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I didn't sign a tenancy agreement but they're asking for money I can't afford?! watch

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    Help,
    I was a student but i have withdrawn from my course because i was no longer interested. I had booked a student room for me to move into around the end of septmeber 2015. I cancelled the room around the end of August 2015. I never signed and returned the tenancy agreement as i had already decided i wasn't going back to Uni. They have requested i pay the first term amount of £1650.32 but i never signed the tenancy agreement, only accepted the offer of the room online, paying £1 as a deposit, which they said over the phone "agrees to their terms and conditions". I have already spoken to them on the phone and explained i only work part time and struggle to live on my current salary anyway. Me and my family have never been rich and we struggle everyday and physically cannot afford to pay such a high amount of money. They mentioned i could advertise the room to get someone else to move in and then it would cancel me out and i wouldn't have to pay anything, and they offered to help advertise the room also. They also said i could start paying little bits a month, but i explained this would only be a maximum of £25 a month as that is all i can afford, taking into account everyday things i need to pay for, travel and paying board being the most expensive. I need help and advice on anything else i can say to the student halls when i ring them again. They have also been clumsy with my emails cancelling the room, i first rang them and spoke to someone on the phone to cancel my room and they didn't seem professional at all and just told me to email as its written, so i emailed them, cancelling my room and then confirming my cancellation. They emailed back saying i still need to pay and then this is when i decided to ring them. Once i rang them they have said they haven't received anything from me in regards to cancelling my room, but i have the saved the emails as proof! I want to ring them again to get things sorted, i don't mind paying a small amount each month, but it would just take months for me to pay it all. Me and my mom have also collected and printed the emails off, and i have also kept my letter from the Uni confirming i have withdrawn from the course and i will never be receiving and student finance as proof.

    Please help!!

    Thanks, Stacey
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    Well they aren't going to care much about your financial situation, you either owe them the money or you don't so don't bother with any sob stories.

    My understanding was that until you sign the tenancy agreement then you haven't entered into a contract and therefore aren't liable for the rent. I don't think the deposit would constitute a binding contract. Were you given any terms or told you were not obliged to pay X amount of rent when you paid the deposit? Was there any 'do you accept terms and conditions'? If you aren't sure ask them directly where the terms and conditions stating you would owe rent just from paying the deposit were located.

    Work out whether or not you genuinely owe them this money before you do anything else.

    If you think you do owe them the money then set up a payment schedule and stick to it, there's nothing else you can do unless you do find an alternate tenant.

    If you can't find any evidence of terms and conditions stating you are obliged to pay rent if you cancel at X point then find a number for head office or ask for some contact details for them. Refuse to deal with the desk staff and say you want to make a formal complaint to someone high up. Then explain you haven't signed anything or entered into any agreement and therefore won't be paying, you want to make a formal complaint about the staff pestering you illegally for money. Make it clear you're prepared to fight them on it and know your rights. Head office will probably just give it up at that point, they don't like dealing with petty things like this.
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    I'm not sure that a deposit constitutes a legally binding contract. I would suggest getting proper advice before paying a penny. Even if they do have it written into the terms and conditions, that doesn't necessarily mean it is legal and should be checked anyway. The paying of the £1 sounds like it is a holding deposit (albeit a small one) which should only mean that in the event you don't sign the agreement (which would make you liable for rent) you lose the £1.
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    (Original post by ruitfruit)
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    The whole point of a deposit is that it's lost if you pull out. It sounds like you paid a £1 holding deposit and so that's all that should be lost.

    What do the terms & conditions that you agreed to say about cancellation? I'm not a legal expert, but I'd be tempted to tell them to jog on if no tenancy agreement was signed.
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    Citizens Advice Bureau usually good for this stuff.
    (That's what they do all day).
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    (Original post by ruitfruit)
    Help,
    I was a student but i have withdrawn from my course because i was no longer interested. I had booked a student room for me to move into around the end of septmeber 2015. I cancelled the room around the end of August 2015. I never signed and returned the tenancy agreement as i had already decided i wasn't going back to Uni. They have requested i pay the first term amount of £1650.32 but i never signed the tenancy agreement, only accepted the offer of the room online, paying £1 as a deposit, which they said over the phone "agrees to their terms and conditions". I have already spoken to them on the phone and explained i only work part time and struggle to live on my current salary anyway. Me and my family have never been rich and we struggle everyday and physically cannot afford to pay such a high amount of money. They mentioned i could advertise the room to get someone else to move in and then it would cancel me out and i wouldn't have to pay anything, and they offered to help advertise the room also. They also said i could start paying little bits a month, but i explained this would only be a maximum of £25 a month as that is all i can afford, taking into account everyday things i need to pay for, travel and paying board being the most expensive. I need help and advice on anything else i can say to the student halls when i ring them again. They have also been clumsy with my emails cancelling the room, i first rang them and spoke to someone on the phone to cancel my room and they didn't seem professional at all and just told me to email as its written, so i emailed them, cancelling my room and then confirming my cancellation. They emailed back saying i still need to pay and then this is when i decided to ring them. Once i rang them they have said they haven't received anything from me in regards to cancelling my room, but i have the saved the emails as proof! I want to ring them again to get things sorted, i don't mind paying a small amount each month, but it would just take months for me to pay it all. Me and my mom have also collected and printed the emails off, and i have also kept my letter from the Uni confirming i have withdrawn from the course and i will never be receiving and student finance as proof.

    Please help!!

    Thanks, Stacey
    I'm 99% certain the bit in bold is a complete lie and they're just trying to scare you into at least starting a small payment plan. Because once you have started to pay a debt (regardless of whether it is yours in the first place or right) you have agreed to the debt and have to continue paying it.

    Don't ever start paying for a debt unless it is legitimately yours and you 100% know you are legally obliged to pay.
 
 
 
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