I went to see a property a few days back and the LL advertised it unfurnished. He said that the furniture is available to buy at a price. I put an offer in for the rent he had advertised and sent him a list of furniture I am interested to buy. He then sent me a message to say he’s getting many offers and wanted me to place my best offer with furniture which I did. He then replied and said he will start the referencing process now, but he’s having a difficulty making a decision between me and someone else and he will decide when references come back.
My question is can he still decide between me and someone else when he’s accepted the deposit? Meanwhile the rent figure has gone up on the advert to my figure but the property has been taken off marketing on open rent.
Just wondering above all is “normal practice” or anyone come across it?
In a competitive market this is common, unfortunately.
Their property their choice.
If he decides on someone else you will get the deposit back.
If you fail credit check you will get it back.
Not if false info given (not suggesting you have done this!).
Thanks Mark. But I thought he cannot be looking at someone else once he’s accepted my deposit? Can he actually do that?
Can anyone stop him doing that?
Anyone being who?
I am just asking because it doesn’t seem right to me. A bit.
I think it stinks if LL does this. I wouldn’t as it inconveniences tenants. Technically agents and LL only allowed to take one holding deposit.
What would you advise me as a tenant if you were in my situation?
I would advise that you let him know that taking a holding deposit from more than one prospective tenant is a breach of the Tenant Fees Act. That will almost certainly lose you the property, but it sounds like you’d be better off out of it.
Personally I wouldn’t do anything other than maybe try to enforce your position as a reliable or keen tenant, without sounding desperate. He wouldn’t like to “be told his business”.
And look at backup properties.
Thank you. Why do you think I’d be better out of it?
If the landlord is willing to break this law then what other laws is he willing to break?
I may be over-reacting of course. You are in a better position to judge whether this is an innocent mistake on his part.
Thank you. And what’s your view on the furniture / non furniture aspect?
It is unfortunately a bit of chicken and egg situation. From outside it looks unreasonable but for him to guarantee your interest he needs deposit. If he does not take deposit and he completes referencing it will cost him if you pull out. If he does two different tenant referencing and decide on one he is prepared for the additional referencing cost and this is his decision. Unfortunately for you this will be a bit messing around and can be inconvenient. I personally would not follow this route.
But why do 2 referencing? What’s his concern?
I wouldn’t pay much for the furniture. You would be saving the landlord the cost of removing and storing it and that would be factored into any offer I made. Also check that soft furnishings have fire retardance labels
I think he’s trying to minimise any void period.
He is only allowed to take one holding deposit at a time so if one tenant fails referencing he then has to move onto the next and this is time wasted.
So he does two at a time and if one fails he has the other one right there.
However, if you both pass he has wasted one person’s time and made them think they have a property to go to, when in fact they haven’t.
dont sweat it and keep looking for other accommodation. It’s a big deal putting a tenant in your property so referencing is key. his response is fair. as David said you are doing LL favour by taking on fiurniture
If hes going to do that he should not have accepted your deposit. I certainly dont until the decision is made. No wonder landlords get a bad name. I dont think its against the regulations as long as he returns it. Just bad form.
Having had so many applicants lie costing me time and money and loss of rent due to void period, I think this is a great idea and will be using it in future.
The “law” has given applicants the right to put the costs onto landlords regardless and we are having to find ways to counter this unfair situation that LL are in.
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