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    Hey

    Last year I found someone on Gumtree, and got a good deal for a place. He was trustworthy at the time, and has a profile on AirBnB which is really well regarded and reviewed.

    Unfortunately, since I moved out he has turned quite nasty and said he will not be returning my deposit due to factors he has made up himself

    Due to the trust we had at the start, we didn't sign a specific contract. I emailed a proposal to him which he agreed though, and then I bank transferred the amount to his bank and then paid first month's rent.

    I moved out in June last year.

    I'm more to the point wondering what my rights are at this stage, as he is just being a bit of a **** about it, which is disappointing as he was actually the most generous and pleasant person to live with when I did live with him, but as I wasn't able to get hold of him for a few months as his number changed, his tone has completely changed towards me and is refusing to give my deposit back. We never discussed that I was losing this before and so I accounted for the money coming back to me. It's a shame because he gave me free rent at the end due to issues with the property, so he's claiming that free rent means he can take it out of my deposit. I would have been happy enough to have agreed this at the time, but it's the mere fact he gave me this rent for free and never suggested I would lose my deposit. Ultimately it isn't free if he's taking from my deposit? but we were very clear when we moved in we would be open with each other and talk about what annoyed us etc and he comes back as being a snipey, two faced man as I ever had the feeling he was unpleasant. I sent him a very reasonable response back which I had backed up by friends, as I still respected him for how he was when I lived with him, but my patience is running thin now as he is ignoring my messages and reporting my messages to airbnb - as I had a message from airbnb saying I wasn't allowed to email about personal non airbnb issues...

    So to summarise, we agreed over email/text terms of contract, but it wasn't signed. And he didn't put deposit into a deposit protection scheme.

    What are my rights? Meant to go to the CAB today but walk in had closed by the time I realised it had opened!

    If I have no rights, what would you recommend, as he does have his own business so I'm sure personal reputation for him is very important.


    Thanks
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    Can't really help as my knowledge is very limited but:
    It is illegal not to put the money in a deposit scheme and it is taken very seriously. I suggest you threaten them with court action at the first instance.

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    (Original post by *Stefan*)
    It is illegal not to put the money in a deposit scheme and it is taken very seriously. I suggest you threaten them with court action at the first instance.

    Posted from TSR Mobile
    THIS, also in regards to a contract being signed, if this is taken to court although they may be inclined to throw it out based on no signed contract. you should provide email and text evidence to prove that the terms were agreed.


    Good luck!
    • Thread Starter
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    Cheers guys,

    I was just a bit worried about the contract situation...

    In a way if I threaten him and I have grounds for the threat then it should be fine as he's the type of person to cave imo

    I was considering sending a further message to him outlining what I will do, and then if no response in 7 days will send a recorded letter to his address with proof of our interactions.

    Just want to make sure both have the correct and relevant info though, what would you suggest I put in the first message?
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    (Original post by Gob Bluth)
    Cheers guys,

    I was just a bit worried about the contract situation...

    In a way if I threaten him and I have grounds for the threat then it should be fine as he's the type of person to cave imo

    I was considering sending a further message to him outlining what I will do, and then if no response in 7 days will send a recorded letter to his address with proof of our interactions.

    Just want to make sure both have the correct and relevant info though, what would you suggest I put in the first message?
    Again, no specialist knowledge but I would cite Chapter 4/Part 6 of the Housing Act 2004 (for the deposit), and you may want to include some information page/website on this to make sure he understands, along with evidence that the contract had been concluded (if you have these). It is not necessary for the contract to be signed on paper for it to be concluded, but it is more difficult to prove that such contracts are valid.

    Thus, you should refer anything that you think helps your purpose.

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    • Study Helper
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    (Original post by Gob Bluth)
    Hey

    Last year I found someone on Gumtree, and got a good deal for a place. He was trustworthy at the time, and has a profile on AirBnB which is really well regarded and reviewed.

    Unfortunately, since I moved out he has turned quite nasty and said he will not be returning my deposit due to factors he has made up himself

    Due to the trust we had at the start, we didn't sign a specific contract. I emailed a proposal to him which he agreed though, and then I bank transferred the amount to his bank and then paid first month's rent.

    I moved out in June last year.

    I'm more to the point wondering what my rights are at this stage, as he is just being a bit of a **** about it, which is disappointing as he was actually the most generous and pleasant person to live with when I did live with him, but as I wasn't able to get hold of him for a few months as his number changed, his tone has completely changed towards me and is refusing to give my deposit back. We never discussed that I was losing this before and so I accounted for the money coming back to me. It's a shame because he gave me free rent at the end due to issues with the property, so he's claiming that free rent means he can take it out of my deposit. I would have been happy enough to have agreed this at the time, but it's the mere fact he gave me this rent for free and never suggested I would lose my deposit. Ultimately it isn't free if he's taking from my deposit? but we were very clear when we moved in we would be open with each other and talk about what annoyed us etc and he comes back as being a snipey, two faced man as I ever had the feeling he was unpleasant. I sent him a very reasonable response back which I had backed up by friends, as I still respected him for how he was when I lived with him, but my patience is running thin now as he is ignoring my messages and reporting my messages to airbnb - as I had a message from airbnb saying I wasn't allowed to email about personal non airbnb issues...

    So to summarise, we agreed over email/text terms of contract, but it wasn't signed. And he didn't put deposit into a deposit protection scheme.

    What are my rights? Meant to go to the CAB today but walk in had closed by the time I realised it had opened!

    If I have no rights, what would you recommend, as he does have his own business so I'm sure personal reputation for him is very important.


    Thanks
    It all comes down to who can prove what.

    You need to prove that:

    a) he agreed and allowed you to stay rent free at the end due to issues with the flat. i.e. a reduction on your rent because of the issues.

    b) that he has your deposit money and is refusing to return it.

    c) that you have not caused the problems he claims resulting in a deduction from your deposit.

    He needs to prove that:

    a) you had a contract with him saying he can deduct any damages caused by you from your deposit.

    b) that he never agreed to reduce your rent.

    c) that you caused the damages.

    If you still have a saved copy of the e-mails and texts then this will go a long way to proving some of your case.

    Find out from the CAB how to raise a claim through the small claims court, file the case, pay the fees and send him the court summons. Make sure you include the costs of raising the claim together with the court costs. I don't think it should cost too much as you don't need a solicitor.

    That should be enough for him to return your deposit since he is unlikely to want to go to court over this and also that he may lose and then not only does he need to pay you back the deposit, he will also have to pay for your expenses and court fees.

    Good luck.
    • Very Important Poster
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    Was it a tenancy or a licence. Were you sharing the house and he was LL or did you have a tenancy and he lived elsewhere?
    What was in the proposal?
    Do you have a copy of that e-mail/ chain of correspondence?

    Tenancy deposit schemes only cover assured shorthold tenancies, so it does not apply if you live in the same house as your LL.You should go to CAB, Shelter or your student welfare services for advice.

    It will boil down to asking him formally for the return of the money in a letter, which covers all the points needed. cover the issues, point out what was agreed, why he hasnt complied and what he can do to remedy the situation.

    This gives him a last chance. You may agree a compromise, but if he fails to agree or doesnt return anything then you will take action through the small claims procedure in the county court. Ofc he will probably waive this off and say sue me. If he doesnt wnat to play ball and you want your money you then have to sue him for the money. Its pretty straightforward.

    Once the court issues proceedings against him then its a game of bluff/chicken. If he still doesnt agree then it will boil down to following procedure where you will provide evidence and a statement. It will be your word against his and then up to the registrar about which version he believes. Any evidence/e-mails help. You will get 2 sorts of reaction 1. He will be prepared to go the distance 2. he will cave in.

    You should also look at the terms and conditions that apply to airbnb as its unclear what length of time you were living with him. They may have an internal mediation service? Airbnb suggests a licence and a further indication the tenancy deposit scheme does not apply. You can check this at CAB.

    If it were me. I'd send him the letter because its good evidence to be used at court. more for your benefit than his as you can say look I explained my position and this is his reply. I tried to avoid court etc. Issue a claim against him. Its up to you whether you want to pay the court fees and expend the time. The idea is once he sees you are suing him he gives in, but people are unpredictable and it might boil down to your word against his.

    About getting your deposit back
    http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_ad...r_deposit_back
    What you need to do
    http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_ad...dgers_deposits

    Everything you need to know is above, but i'd suggest going to see an adviser so they can check what the facts are so they can give the correct advice. An interview is the best method for that.Good luck.
    • Thread Starter
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    Cheers both,

    Extremely helpful

    I meant to go to Shelter today but missed the chance.

    I've sent an ultimatum too him to say I will be exploring this further and going to court if necessary. It was another very reasonable message, and he was a very reasonable person, so hopefully that I am prepared to take this further may hit home to him he needs to cooperate. If he doesn't, I'll speak to Shelter next week, and see what my options are.

    I have a copy of all our texts and correspondence which helps. I just find this whole situation bizarre - it almost seems he is angry over it being brought up and remembered more than anything - I think he thought it was forgotten? He changed his phone number so was just really hard to get hold of...

    Fact is though looking at messages, he's being a ****, if he isn't cooperating with me and at least discussing it with me after 3 very reasonable emails, to hell with him and what I thought of him before!
    • Very Important Poster
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    For correspondence make sure you get a read receipt on the e-mail or he cna claim he never received it. letters sent by registered post with a signature would be a better alternative. I expect he knows how to deal with court proceedings, so he isnt likely to care. he will take more notice if you issue. Shelter are unlikely to tell you anything more than ive pointed out to you. Your agreement all sounds very vague which isnt helpful.
 
 
 
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