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Recovering a deposit

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  • Recovering a deposit

    I will cut to the chase and give you the facts.

    I verbally agreed (in August) to rent a room from a private landlord, with a view to moving in at the end of Sept. To hold the room the landlord asked for £100, which would then be deducted from the first month's rent. Due to financial difficulties (redundancy) I am now unable to take the room and would like my £100 deposit back. No contract was signed and there was no discussion about what would happen to the £100 if the agreement was cancelled.

    THe only other point to note is that I wrote a letter when I sent the cheque saying "Please find the £100 as agreed and I agree that the balance of the first month's rent will be paid upon moving in", or words to that effect. I am concerned that this may work against me.

    Any thoughts?

  • #2
    You have actually entered into a verbal contract with the landlord, which you have 'backed up' with a letter stating the fact that you have agreed to the tenancy.

    At best you will loose the £100 deposit, as the landlord has kept the property vacant for you when they could have rented it out. At worst, if the landlord could try and claim damanges against you for reneging on a contract and have you pay the costs for him/her finding another tenant...(although this is unlikey).

    Have you actually advised the landlord of your situation or are they still on the undertanding that you're moving into the property?
    commission free property sales and lettings


    • #3
      Do you have a copy of the letter. That could be of use. In theory though, that's what I deposit is for. Deposits are generally lost if you don't go ahead with it.



      • #4
        Re: Recovering a deposit

        I would think in this instance you can definitely wave goodbye to your deposit, the only thing that you need to worry about is if the landlord decides to hold you responsible for any loss of earnings that he may suffer due to the property not being rented out.

        I would hope that it would not come down to that as it is just a product of the current climate where lots of people are being made redundant
        A Specialist in all things regarding Landlords Insurance


        • #5
          Re: Recovering a deposit

          The holding deposit is simply as what it states - to hold a property or room for a tenant or lodger until a time the tenant or lodger is able to move in. At the time the holding deposit is taken each party makes a promise to each other:

          1. The landlord promises to hold the property for the lodger or tenant until a time they are able to move in. (This will be time restricted since the landlord cannot be expected to hold the property for the lodger/tenant forever.)

          2. The lodger/tenant promises to move in within a reasonable time frame.

          The person who breaks the promise is the one who would have to forfeit or return the deposit
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