Tenants say I owe them money

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M
MST
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Hi,
The tenancy agreement on the house I am landlord of ran out on 29.12.09. My tenants gave me a letter informing me that they were giving one months notice from 29.11.09 to vacate the property. They had added value by installing iron gates, a patio and laying a lawn and in their letter they said that anything they had done outside the house, eg these things specifically they were leaving, which they did.

I visited them and they then informed me that they were moving out on 15.12.09 but would be responsible for the proerty until 29th. I went to check on moving day and they had left and all of the keys to the house had been left, they had moved away and effectively finished with the house - rent was paid up until 29th.

I informed the council tax that their actual moving out day was 15th but they were responsible for the tenancy until 29th. They were on benefits and this instigated a letter from the local council saying that as they had moved out on 15th and their benefits had actually been paid until the end of the month the council wanted 71.00 back from them, overpaid benefit money.

They did themselves in fact ring the utility companies and have final bills made up until 15th but the tenants tell me I should have told the council the they moved out on 29th and not 15th as this is when the tenancy agreement finished. I disagree with this, hence they are mad that they have been asked to pay 71.00 back to the Council.

They moved out og county and the area on 15th.

Now they keep phoning me to say that they cannot afford to pay the money back and I must give them the 71.00 back or else they will have to come back to the property and remove the gates to sell to raise some cash. They paid my rent up until 29th but from 15th they also paid for the new property (which was their choice)

Can you tell me how I stand with this. The gates are worth more and I would rather keep them. Should I bite the bullet and give them the 71.00 or are they now entitled to remove the gates that they said in writing they would leave.

I am sorry this is a long tale. I would appreciate your view.
Thank you
MT

14/01/2010 00:00

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