Retaliatory eviction

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This is somewhat putting the boot on the other foot.

I have been a landlord with several properties for 20 years and a RLA member for the majority of those years. In addition, I rent a property as my work requires frequent moves.

The house is owned by commercial landlord and managed by a commercial agent, e.g. they are not 'accidental' landlords but engaged in the business full time.

When we moved into the property we submitted a snagging list of deficient items including the fact that the bathroom extractor fan (newly installed) was not working and the kitchen extractor was ineffectual. The snagging list was submitted several times but no action whatsoever was taken.

During an inspection visit in the summer it was pointed out that the first signs of mould were appearing (as a long standing landlord, I know the signs) but still no action was undertaken. The only repair ever performed by the agent was when the boiler broke down (the contractor was incredibly rude and patronising about us allowing the oil to get too low; it transpired to be faulty installation. By himÖ).

During the Christmas period the mould bloomed both in the bathroom & kitchen. The bathroom was so bad that I had to treat the whole room. However, without a change in the environmental conditions, it has already start to grow again. At the end of December we again complained about the lack of repairs and now the mould growth.

On Jan 5th we received a Section 21 notice; our 12 month AST expires March 14th. No reason was stated by this professional landlord. To my mind this is a clear case of retaliatory eviction that the RLA has stated is rare, illegal and protected against by existing legislation.

So what is that legislation and what steps can I take? Obviously Iíll be reporting this to the Environmental Health Department but that is unlikely to stop the Section 21 being enforced in itself.

Kind regards
Ian Price
14/01/2015 10:41

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