In breach of contract / current arrears

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My situation is that I have tenants in arrears by just under two months, they have made a plan to pay me back over this month which I am happy with (if they stick to it!). The property is luckily not contracted to them but under a company let to the company owned by the father-in-law.

Since they moved in in mid 2007 I have not checked the house, I know that they did some decorating and I approved verbally work that they did in the hall and kitchen. When I said that I would check the property this month, he dropped a bombshell telling me that they had removed the fireplace and the hearth to the open fire, taken out the old pipes and back boiler and the inbuilt cupboard that housed them in the lounge (gas central heating throughout so they don't need to us) they have boarded it up and plastered over it and had new laminate flooring laid (the previous flooring was laminate and laid just before they came professionally). They also told me that they have taken up the lawn and put down play chippings instead.

I told them that they should not have done any of this without my permission at all.

In the agreement it says that the landlord should give permission and preferably in writing if the tenants want to do this. Obviously putting the open fire (knocking back through) and fireplace back in will cost more than their deposit - 595.00

My problem is this -
they have no where to go and they can stay if they get up to date with the rent, however do I flag up put in writing about the breach of contract now? Tell the company? Put something in writing to a solicitor? Or do it when they may eventually move out? Stupidly I let my rentguard insurance slip before all the trouble started. So would ther be any way of recouping the losses for at least the fire and the fire place. Also they have had unauthorised people doing the work - where do I stand on that as it was a working open fire they have blocked up!

Many thanks

09/04/2009 00:00

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