What should Tenant Pay from their deposit?


It all seem fair and square when tenant pays for your damages when they leave, but it turned out to be more difficult than it is.

First of all the tenant damaged the wall and burnt the carpet so it needs replacing. The new tenant would want to move right on the day the current tenant moves out or when the flat is readily fixed to move in.

How do we go around rectifying the fixes? If I want it fixed now before current tenant leaves, it will need the bed to be removed before doing carpet and fixing walls. If it is after they leave then the new tenant would not want those “building” work to happen while they start paying.

What is the usual practice? is it that if the work takes 2 days to complete and new tenant wants to move in ASAP, I charge the 2 days rent if the current tenant wishes the work to carry out after they leave or they can leave 2 days earlier than their tenancy end date so I carry out the work?

Effectively the question is do we usually get tenant to pay for the rent loss for fixing their problem?

Well firstly, you cant claim for a replacement carpet, only for the loss in value of the existing carpet. If it was already more than about 10 years old, the deposit schemes will consider it has no residual value and youd probably get nothing. Anything less than 10 years should be depeciated in proportion.

Secondly, its a mistake, imo to agree a new tenancy to begin as soon as the old one ends for this very reason. Repairs and cleaning usually take a few days to organise.

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The tenant burnt the carpet of a new build, shouldn’t they pay for what they did?

its your place you decide what to do

That’s what I initially thought. this “can’t” is it physically not able to do from Open rent’s deposit scheme?

You can claim anything that is ruined. But Deposit Protection Scheme adjudicator will only award deprecation costs. For example, when our T broke shower, they didn’t award full replacement cost. They requested a purchase receipt, and when we provided it (bought and installed three years ago), they gave, I think half of the cost, without plumber’s work, which was the lion’s share of the total. So, it was a pittance.

So basically it is only when people disagrees? If they agree then it is fine? Also does it have to have a inventory at hand? e.g. if you don’t have an inventory report, can you claim anything?

You pose an interesting question…
I think most LLs usually have at least a couple days between let’s to do extra cleaning and carryout repairs. Also the landlord would require the property to be empty so they can take new pictures for the advert. However, if it was a short let of say 6 months you may be able to use the previous pics if the general condition of the property remains the same as when first let.

From what I have read, you can make a claim against the tenants deposit for a fraction of the cost of replacing the carpet. You can’t claim the whole cost if the carpet wasn’t new. So the lifespan of a carpet is 7 years and if it is already 3 years old there is a calculation that is used to give a percentage of depreciation for the 3 years the carpet was laid. You cannot claim for betterment, which means you cannot expect the tenant to pay the whole cost of a brand new carpet to replace a 3 year old carpet.

As for claiming for the loss of income, I agree with you. INMO a LL should be able claim but I doubt whether the adjudicator will award you for the potential loss of income. In another scenario if a tenant moved out and left their belongings in your property. You would be obliged to keep those belongings for 14 days before disposing of them. You would be able to make a claim for your disposal costs but I am yet to hear of anyone who has successfully claimed for the potential loss of income. And with any claim for damages you would need to evidence your claim with an inventory showing before and after pictures. It’s not fair, but that’s the way it is.

If the tenant wants to give you money for the damage without going through the deposit scheme then fine, but if they dont, how are you going to prove to the scheme adjudicator that the burn wasnt already there when the tenancy began?

No harm in trying. I used to add it to my dilapidations account but, from a legal standpoint, a judge would tend to disallow that aspect, in my experience. However, if you made a money claim online, and the tenant did not respond within 2-weeks, you can apply for an automatic judgement and that would be for the full amount of your claim.

Otherwise simply delay the new tenants start date a few days, assuming it’s not inconvenient for them and doesn’t cost you hotel charges etc, and accept a few days missed rent. It is more usual, and sensible, to allow a few days between tenancies for making the property presentable for the new tenant, just in case.

Although I once had a fantastic agent who checked out the old and checked in the new tenants over a lunchtime, with the place lemon fresh clean and pristine, oh happy days! He advised me the old tenants even painted the front gate, which was a surprise to me as there wasn’t a gate on that entrance way when I left it…

Personally, I would insist on access to complete the repair works to the wall during the existing tenants notice period and arrange for the carpet to be fitted the day they move out, before the new tenant moves in, if you really cannot get any leeway from the new tenant.

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