26 Apr 2022

As a landlord before you have any disagreement difference of opinion or need to settle differences with a tenant it is important to make sure your house is in order.

There is a pattern emerging of landlords and tenants having disagreements and and while they cannot be resolved the landlord is in breach of his obligations and most often this is to have licensed the property properly.

Yes arguing with a tenant when your HMO does not have a licence when it needs one or your buy-to-let does not have a selective licence when it needs one is a very costly mistake.

I liken it to the parable of the adulterous woman.Again the story is intended to entrap.The outcome was clear and the advice was if you are without sin then cast the first stone. Of course all the excuses walked away and no stone was cast.Landlords I cry out to you please make sure you are without sin before you have a disagreement with a tenant.

This week I was asked to assist and defend a landlord and the case was already being heard at the tribunal, and was half way through.He did not have a licence and it appears there was an extra occupant that meant one was required and the tenant was claiming just £5,000 as a rent repayment order. They also made an application for costs which was many times the rent repayment order claim. Loosely, the conduct of the landlord in the case prior to our involvement determines what will be awarded if anything.

Please be humble be legal and for your Sake please don’t act in haste.If the landlord had sought professional advice before the judge ordered him to, there was quite a lot of legitimate defence but none of it could be taken into consideration as all the damage has already been done prior to my involvement.Be warned, Do It Yourself defence against tenants is becoming the latest in costly mistakes.

If you have a tenant claiming back rent via the Tribunal, it is serious legal stuff.Seek help it is cheaper than the errors.

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