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House mate will not pay his bills watch

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    So me and my house have had a lot of issues when it comes to dealing with our housemate. Let's call him 3 (his room number, all tenants will be known by their door numbers for now on). At the beginning of the academic year, we lost two tenants as they needed to leave University for personal issues - that meant we needed to recruit two new ones quickly or get charged. We found 3 and 4.

    When 3 moved into the house it was fine, although he smoked a lot of weed. Which I am fine with as long as it is not in the house - which he ended up doing! One time I found out he had a green recycling bag of weed in his room, which he showed me - I told him to remove it from the house in case the landlords found it on inspection and he was fine with that. We have also had his drug dealer and lots of random people walk straight into our house. We know for a fact he has been dealing on the property.

    However, things started to get worse. One night he came back drunk and high on valium and his girlfriend somehow got into our property - domestic ensued and he pushed her down the stairs. She called the police on him so we had the police round and they got rid of her. But the same night after I had locked the door, she managed to get into the property again (we think she has stolen a key from someone living in the house) and became violent - which I then called the police on her to remove her from the property. This happened around the end of October.

    About mid-November, 4's Marc Jacobs watch (worth £300) had been stolen from the bathroom in our house and number 3 was the only person who had left the house an hour before. We had to go down the police station to let them know the watch had been stolen, and we told the house the police will be round to search the house. This frightened 3 as he has stolen things in the past, including a tv he had sold to 1, which 3 had taken back to avoid suspicion.

    After this incident, he has not been living in the house. He does come back occasionally and when he does food always goes missing. We know that he was very late paying his rent which he was avoiding the landlord and ignoring their phone calls to pay it, when they eventually got into contact he said the was having trouble financially. This is true as he owes £1,600 in damages to his landlord last year, is in debt of £1,070 to some company and lots more - we have had debt collectors threats come to the house addressed to him and addressed to the house.

    Nevertheless, his name is still on the Water, Gas and Electricity bills for the house and on our Joint contract it states that ALL tenants must pay their bills that are forwarded to the house. He is very rude to me when all I have ever done is help him get a job etc, I know why he feels he should not pay the bills because he's not living there - but it is not fair to anyone else that lives there, and they will not pay for him what-so-ever because of the type of person he is. And since he is named on the bills and contracts he should pay for them regardless.

    I have gone to my student union about the situation but there's only so much they can do. SO, what should I do? Should I tell the landlord he has no intention of paying his bills, should I contact the debt collectors company who is trying to get hold of him? I don't know. I suffer from severe Depression and Anxiety so this really does nothing for my health. I can't wait to just move back home.
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    Is there a way you can evict him and find someone else?
    I cna understand his point about bills if he is not there but it all depends how its worked out. Is it just split between the housemates or its based upon what you use? Notwithstanding that he will have known before you moved in.


    1. Can the LL help? Without seeing your tenancy agreements and knowing what the arrangements are then its hard to know how this works. If you are sub letting to him, then on the one hand the LL isnt interested, but on the other you are his LL and can evict/ terminate the agreement

    2. You should tlak to him, but I doubt you will get any money from him. You cna write him a letter wth the bills setting out how much he owes. the aim is not that you expect him to pay up, but its evidence that yu cna use to sue him later. As you already mentioned debt ccollectors, then people are already chasing him.

    3. So that most likely means LL arent interested and unpaud bills will damage your credit record. he either doesnt have the money and suing him may not yield any money either. the only way forward would be to terminate his contract to physically get rid of him and sublet the room for the short remaining period. That would probably be better for all as youd know he wasnt in the house anymore.

    Not ideal, but.apart for getting the heavy mob in I cnat see what you cna do. If you wnat to go nuclear then sue him and et an attacchment of earnings order so its decucted from his salary, but he sounds like such a pain hes likely to get violent. Much better to evict him, use part of his deposit to pay bills. Ui cna tell he LL but its unclear whether they will care or not. Depends how your agreement works, it might just be soemthing for you to sort out between yourselves.
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    Bottom line: don't get a contract where you are liable for people other than yourself.
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    You should have sorted your utility bills through Glide
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    (Original post by CarlieeeeA)
    SO, what should I do?
    Ignoring the wall of text as almost all of it is irrelevant; Who's name is on the specific bill (s) not being paid?


    (Original post by CarlieeeeA)
    Should I tell the landlord he has no intention of paying his bills
    Nothing to do with your landlord


    (Original post by CarlieeeeA)
    should I contact the debt collectors company who is trying to get hold of him?
    Yes, advise them that he is a tenant at the address but not currently living there.
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    (Original post by Reue)
    Ignoring the wall of text as almost all of it is irrelevant; Who's name is on the specific bill (s) not being paid


    Nothing to do with your landlord




    Yes, advise them that he is a tenant at the address but not currently living there.
    The reason why I gave a background was to show how difficult he is.
    Anyway, on the letters it gives the reference number from the debt collectors, if I phoned them with the reference number I'm worried they'll think the debt is to do with me haha. All tenants names are on the bills.
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    (Original post by CarlieeeeA)
    The reason why I gave a background was to show how difficult he is.
    Unfortunately that makes no difference.

    (Original post by CarlieeeeA)
    Anyway, on the letters it gives the reference number from the debt collectors, if I phoned them with the reference number I'm worried they'll think the debt is to do with me haha.
    Who cares if they do? Just refuse to give your name. I've phoned up debt collectors before chasing previous tenants at my address and just told them to person no longer lived here without giving them any of my details.

    (Original post by CarlieeeeA)
    All tenants names are on the bills.
    Then you are all jointly liable. The utility companies will come after whoever they want for repayment if the bills are not met.

    You could try speaking with your landlord in order to reclaim the money from his deposit? However the landlord is under no obligation to do that.

    Otherwise it will be a case for small claims court.
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    (Original post by 999tigger)
    Is there a way you can evict him and find someone else?
    I cna understand his point about bills if he is not there but it all depends how its worked out. Is it just split between the housemates or its based upon what you use? Notwithstanding that he will have known before you moved in.


    1. Can the LL help? Without seeing your tenancy agreements and knowing what the arrangements are then its hard to know how this works. If you are sub letting to him, then on the one hand the LL isnt interested, but on the other you are his LL and can evict/ terminate the agreement

    2. You should tlak to him, but I doubt you will get any money from him. You cna write him a letter wth the bills setting out how much he owes. the aim is not that you expect him to pay up, but its evidence that yu cna use to sue him later. As you already mentioned debt ccollectors, then people are already chasing him.

    3. So that most likely means LL arent interested and unpaud bills will damage your credit record. he either doesnt have the money and suing him may not yield any money either. the only way forward would be to terminate his contract to physically get rid of him and sublet the room for the short remaining period. That would probably be better for all as youd know he wasnt in the house anymore.

    Not ideal, but.apart for getting the heavy mob in I cnat see what you cna do. If you wnat to go nuclear then sue him and et an attacchment of earnings order so its decucted from his salary, but he sounds like such a pain hes likely to get violent. Much better to evict him, use part of his deposit to pay bills. Ui cna tell he LL but its unclear whether they will care or not. Depends how your agreement works, it might just be soemthing for you to sort out between yourselves.
    If we evict him we will be liable for his rent, and there is not chance in getting another tenant to replace him at this time of the semester ''/. Thank you for responding though. I feel like I will be the one paying his bills now because none of my other house mates understand the severity of it and that it could impact our credit scores. I rather not deal with that hassel - even though I would love to take him to court.
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    (Original post by Reue)
    Unfortunately that makes no difference.



    Who cares if they do? Just refuse to give your name. I've phoned up debt collectors before chasing previous tenants at my address and just told them to person no longer lived here without giving them any of my details.



    Then you are all jointly liable. The utility companies will come after whoever they want for repayment if the bills are not met.

    You could try speaking with your landlord in order to reclaim the money from his deposit? However the landlord is under no obligation to do that.

    Otherwise it will be a case for small claims court.
    Unfortunately, we cannot claim from his deposit because the deposit does not belong to him. The deposit still belongs to the tenant who was in his room before him - the landlord just did a swap over with names on the contract but did not ask 3 for anymoney as the depsit is going straight back to the previous signed tenant (if that makes anysense). So, he isn't really tied down with any money to the property.
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    (Original post by Tom78)
    You should have sorted your utility bills through Glide
    I have never heard of that
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    (Original post by CarlieeeeA)
    Unfortunately, we cannot claim from his deposit because the deposit does not belong to him. The deposit still belongs to the tenant who was in his room before him - the landlord just did a swap over with names on the contract but did not ask 3 for anymoney as the depsit is going straight back to the previous signed tenant (if that makes anysense). So, he isn't really tied down with any money to the property.
    Your landlord is an idiot. What if he trashed the place?!
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    (Original post by Reue)
    Your landlord is an idiot. What if he trashed the place?!
    Sorry, I miss read your last comment. Yeah if he trashed the place we would probably have to pay for it out our deposits or upfornt.
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    (Original post by CarlieeeeA)
    Sorry, I miss read your last comment. Yeah if he trashed the place we would probably have to pay for it out our deposits or upfornt.
    What a mess.

    Personally I would forget about trying to get any money out of him and get the landlord to officially evict him.
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    (Original post by CarlieeeeA)
    At the beginning of the academic year, we lost two tenants as they needed to leave University for personal issues - that meant we needed to recruit two new ones quickly or get charged. We found 3 and 4.
    WTF? Why is it your job to recruit tenants for a landlord when other people decide to move out? You should have said no as surely charging YOU for that can't be legal.
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    (Original post by Reue)
    Ignoring the wall of text as almost all of it is irrelevant; Who's name is on the specific bill (s) not being paid?

    Nothing to do with your landlord


    Yes, advise them that he is a tenant at the address but not currently living there.
    Its worth looking at the tenancy agreement so someone can assess exactly what the rleationship and obligations are between the LL and tenants as well as between the tenants themselves.

    Whats the point in telling debt collectors? How does that help the OP?
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    (Original post by Sephiroth)
    WTF? Why is it your job to recruit tenants for a landlord when other people decide to move out? You should have said no as surely charging YOU for that can't be legal.
    Unfortunately, it is. I went to the union and asked for advice and showed them the contract. They said the contract was stupid but the landlord can do that apparently.
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    (Original post by Reue)
    What a mess.

    Personally I would forget about trying to get any money out of him and get the landlord to officially evict him.
    Well it if the landlord evicts him we are going to be liable for this rent and no one wants to pay it.
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    (Original post by 999tigger)
    Its worth looking at the tenancy agreement so someone can assess exactly what the rleationship and obligations are between the LL and tenants as well as between the tenants themselves.

    Whats the point in telling debt collectors? How does that help the OP?
    The only thing it would help with is that the letters would go to his parents house, his parents are unaware that he owes about £2,000+.
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    (Original post by CarlieeeeA)
    Unfortunately, it is. I went to the union and asked for advice and showed them the contract. They said the contract was stupid but the landlord can do that apparently.
    Just because something is in a contract doesn't mean it's valid. I mean what if you signed a contract that said the landlord can chop you up and feed you to the dogs? The law will always over-ride a contract.

    I'm no lawyer so I can't comment on the legality of a landlord holding you responsible for operating his business, but one would assume there's protections in place for vulnerable people. If not then the government has a lot to answer for and I'd be writing to my MP and the national newspapers.

    But there is a lesson to be learned and it's exactly as another poster put it - never, ever sign a contract that holds you financially responsible for other people. I can't think of anything worse.
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    (Original post by CarlieeeeA)
    If we evict him we will be liable for his rent, and there is not chance in getting another tenant to replace him at this time of the semester ''/. Thank you for responding though. I feel like I will be the one paying his bills now because none of my other house mates understand the severity of it and that it could impact our credit scores. I rather not deal with that hassel - even though I would love to take him to court.
    If you dont have anyone competent at the SY to deal with it, then take the issue to Shelter or CAB ro see if they can throw light on it. Its unclear to me exactly how the tenancy works and someone will need to look at the documents.

    If he is paying his rent but not the bills, then thats something.

    If your agreement has you hoping and severally liable for the whole rent, then evicting him would mean you had to make up the shortfall. You may or may not be prepared for that.

    Alternatively if he isnt there hes paying rent and the bit missing is the electric he isnt using, then you cna either just absorb the extra money between you or sue him later. You need to do it in conjunction with the housemates. It cnat be that much money?

    What is apparent is its causing you stress and if you are depressed plus you are studying thats even more unhelpful. leave him a letter with the bill and if he doesnt do anything decide if ts wrth suing or evicting him. there isnt an easy answer.

    Btw dont worry about the wall of text, its useful to get an inside track on the problem. It was fine. Take care and try not to worry.

    http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_advice
 
 
 
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