As well as being a landlord, I took tenancy of a flat managing by an agent on 11-09-10. Soon after I moved in, there were 2 problems: firstly a leak from upstairs which the agents had assured me was resolved before we moved in (because I noticed the damage a few days prior). Secondly, the air extraction wasn't working at all from the day I moved in (which I hadn't realised until I noticed the bathrooms being damp/smelly). The agents didn't fix these problems within a reasonable amount of time; I suspect to save on costs. I also had to do all the chasing around, calling suppliers to source parts, talking to neighbours etc etc. In a nutshell, they didn't 'manage' anything. As a consequence, I was left with one of the two bathrooms that I pay for out of use, plus mildewy and smelly bathrooms for several months. I'm not happy that: a) that the agents lied to me about their fixing the leak upstairs before I moved in (because the occupants tell me that no-one asked for access to fix it); b) they took so long to fix the problems and did very little. I approached them about it very reasonably and said that under the terms of the tenancy, the Housing Act and the Supply of Goods and Services Act, I am entitled to compensation and I would like to sit down and discuss the matter and come to some arrangement. They sent me a threatening email saying that if I deducted a single penny from my rent, I would be evicted. I have suffered through their negligence and haven't got what I paid for and now I'm just threatened with eviction. There must be something I can do.
I would never subject my own tenants to this because I give them a reasonable standard of living, whatever the cost (I don't use managing agents), but if I had slipped up, they wouldn't have to ask me for a rent reduction - I would just expect it.
I would appreciate any advice for any members or the RLA Helpdesk.