Bonds withheld to meet arrears - can I include the late payment charges?
One tenant was persistantly in arrears &on the leaving date owed me
£1282. He received a rent statement to this effect on 31/8/05. £70 of this was late payment charges.
He had received monthly statements up to that point showing the increasing arrears &I included a £10 a month late payment charge each month, which 'roughly' averaged out the same as the charges laid out in the RLA agreement.He had had numerous reminders ®ular statements.
I had received, with difficulty, all the rent from the other tenants by the 31st Aug so I was holding 4 bonds of £280 each, totalling £1120.
I withheld the return of the bonds which the others reluctantly accepted. In the next few months I received payments totalling £400 from the tenant, which stopped in Jan06, as did all communication with him. I had returned £280 worth of bonds by Jan 06 as well. I sent an updated statement to ALL the tenants, &the owing tenant's parents in May 06 with the arrears now totalling £982, again including another £100 in late payment charges.
I still have £840 in bonds. Am I right to include the extra charges in the arrears total as far as returning bonds is concerned? I assume so.
PS The other tenants are thinking of suing him for there money.