My partner and I have been living in this flat for 6 months now, the flat looked in good condition when we moved in, but we have been 4 months with leaks, and every time it rains half the flat flooded , there is mold growing everywhere (even though we try to clean it), and the flat gets very damp. There are some other ‘minor’ issues such as the bathtub blocked and unusable.
We have contacted our landlord (many times and via several means), and she ignores us. We have seen options like taking the landlord to court, but these would take lots of time, and would be quite an investment of money, and we know our landlord has more time (both me and my partner work full time) and money. Therefore, we are thinking of the following 2 options. Note that our contract is for a total of 2 years and does not have 6-months break clause.
- Stop paying rent, until they evict us , and find a new flat in the meantime.
- Leave the apartment and stop paying rent . We make monthly payments to a real estate agency, but do not have a standing order, so we could simply stop paying and find somewhere else.
We are honestly a bit desperate and very frustrated about the situation, particularly in the current atmosphere, otherwise we would not resort to this. However, we are worried on the impact this could have , could we get brought to court? Are there any laws that would make us pay for the remaining time? Is there any way that this affects other things like credit scores?
Never stop paying rent, even the council will tell you that.
Speak to the council. They have a tenant liaison officer. They will mandate the Landlord do structural work. If you have to leave so they can get it done then it gives you a legally accepted get out.
Speak to an Environmental Health Officer at the Council and ask them to inspect. They have the power to send a hazard notice to the landlord compelling them to take action.
If you get no joy, follow this process for doing the work and withholding rent: Shelter Legal England - Tenant deducts from rent or offsets rent arrears because of disrepair
I hope you would have kept the photographic evidence
when it rained and got flooded. Also the record of emails and record that you have contacted your landlord.
Regarding the bathtub get blocked then you could use plunger to keep clear and looking after drains tenants should look after
and also report to your landlord.
Best thing to contact environmental officer with all
issues and evidence and they will contact your landlord.
You cannot assume that not paying rent and you can get eviction or stop paying rent and get another flat.
One of my tenant contacted environmental officer even
there is nothing wrong with the flat and heating and because he was feeling cold and not leaving heating on because we got single glazed window and when it’s cold need to leave heating longer.
I had a letter from environmental officer and I asked him to give me access to the flat but he did not and also cc to tenant as well. As I knew that my flat is fine as I live in the
same block. I know in this case my tenant was complaining for no reason.
So I would suggest write to environmental officer and they are good at replying to tenant’s complaints but give tenants 14days to resolve and if not resolved then you can contact them again. The best and quicker way resolve.
I meant environmental officer gives 14days to landlords to resolve any issues.