Landlady refused to pay any deposit back

Anyone else had this? In 2020 I was furloughed, my landlady gave me a 20% reduction on the rent due to the impact of COVID on wages. I did not ask for this, she offered and we gladly accepted. She wanted to sell up at the start of 2021 and so served us a section 21. We moved out after a nightmare time of finding somewhere else to live, due to the housing crisis which she was aware of. She refused to pay our deposit back saying we were in rent arrears to her, for this reduction that she gave us! I had to send evidence of discussions around the reduction which luckily I had kept, and she caved in and eventually returned our deposit, please let this be a warning to other people, it’s just another example of landlady/landlord greed at the expense of hard working lower income families. This lady holds down a very highly esteemed and trusted role in community and I’m sure if her employer knew the way she went about this, it would not reflect well. If anyone else had a temporary reduction please keep documented records as you could well be stung for hundreds of pounds!

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Most landlords gave rent payment holidays rather than reductions. This essentially means a deferral of some portion of the rent to be paid back at a later date. From what you’ve said, it sounds as though she gave you a reduction, which she may or may not have intended at the time. I think its right that you’ve pursued this and got your deposit back, but given that you weren’t expecting the reduction in the first place and the landlady was trying to claim rent that you’d originally pledged to pay, I think that calling it “another example of landlord greed” is a bit rich.


I would agree with David122.

For your LL to offer this ‘reduction’ out of the blue and out of the kindness of her heart, I wouldn’t say that sounded ‘greedy’ at all. Quite the opposite in fact as Covid does not only affect tenants. Her mortgage repayments and bills would not have been reduced and you know nothing of how this pandemic has affected her personally.

The fact that she was selling, could also indicate things were not as rosy for her as you would like to assume.

From what you state, it appears that she used the wrong terminology which under the circumstances of an unprecedented pandemic was totally understandable.

Once pointed out to her, it would appear she has accepted the mistake with good grace and cut her losses.


sounds more like tenant greed to me and ungrateful with it


I think you’ve mis understood the reason for posting, it’s to warn people about documenting any agreement re: reduction of rent due to COVID, landlady was in the wrong in this and hence the reason my particular money was returned :sweat_smile:

I was commenting on your statement about “landlord greed”, not your motivation for posting.


Sounds like she tried to be nice and then regretted her decision, very unfair of her to do this to you. I gave a 50% rent reduction for three months to my tenants who were furloughed and made clear this was a reduction and would not need to be paid back. They weren’t high earners (two chefs and a waitress) so stacking thousands of pounds up as a debt for them could hardly be considered helping them. I didn’t make any money that year, but i also barely had to pay any tax so the only person who really missed out was the taxman. :blush: