UK house rental legal advice
June 20, 2005 4:09 AM   Subscribe

Friend is moving out of a flat, their is some mould/damp around parts of the flat. Landlord says its her responsibility and wants to reparations out of her deposit. Is this legit?

I would have thought if anything, the landlord should have been coming in and sorting it out to ensure they weren't living in a mouldy flat. Seems dubious to me but I'm deeply supscious of landlords and their grasp on deposits. Her responsiblity or theirs? Will it have to be small claims court if they won't give the deposit back?
posted by biffa to Law & Government (8 answers total)
Response by poster: Oops, mentioned it was UK in the title but then left it out of the post itself. Anyway, it's in the UK.
posted by biffa at 4:10 AM on June 20, 2005

Other questions your friend needs to ask herself - did I cause this mould (for example by taking showers without a curtain)? When I noticed it, did I inform the landlord?

If she didn't inform the landlord when the problem arose, she's on shaky ground. If she did, and she didn't cause the mould, then the landlord should not be keeping the deposit for this purpose, based on my common sense and my limited knowledge of housing law.
posted by altolinguistic at 5:15 AM on June 20, 2005

All the rental contracts I've had have explicitly stated that it's my responsibility to keep the flat 'adequately ventilated' to prevent mould/damp. If her contract says that, she's in all probability screwed.
posted by corvine at 5:30 AM on June 20, 2005

It's a bit of a grey area, but I would think that mold = poorly ventilated property = landlords responsibility. Unfortunately, taking them to the small claims court is the only way to get deposit back.

See here for advice: CAB and Shelter
Also: Going to court
posted by echelon at 6:44 AM on June 20, 2005

The landlord says? Didn't she have the independent inventory clerk routine?

I wouldn't even consider moving out of a UK rental without a professional cleaning. But I always have the inventory clerks inspecting, and rent houses, not flats. (LOL, always=twice in two years). I lack the patience to clean to the required level of pickyness.
posted by Goofyy at 6:54 AM on June 20, 2005

Seems dubious to me.
In my experiences of renting or knowing people that rent out property (either directly or through an agent) the owner of the property has always been the one responsible for paying for this kind of issue. But to be honest, unless you post the contract here, I doubt anybody will be able to give you a definitive answer, just opinions on past experience.
Sadly, it is my experience of renting in the UK that when you move out you are required to bend over and let the landlord fuck you in the arse, unless you are prepared to take the matter to the small claims court and prove that being fucked in the arse by the landlord isn't really called for. In the past I bent over and took it, and I really regret that I let some scum landlord steal £100 of my money. There are decent landlords around, but really, many of them do so love to fuck you. So read that contract carefully and fight it is possible.
posted by chill at 10:03 AM on June 20, 2005

is possible. if possible.
posted by chill at 10:05 AM on June 20, 2005

Response by poster: Cheers for the replies all, my experience with landlords has been similar to yours chill, which is why I'm not happy to see my friend get stitched up, potentially over quite a bit of cash for him to solve a problem which looks like it's been there a while and which (I have found out since posting the question) they certainly knew about before she moved in. Will be having a good look at the contract certainly. Not heard of the independent inventory thing of Goofyy's reply, a shame as I've moved a lot over the years, will look into that for my next time.
posted by biffa at 11:15 AM on June 20, 2005

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