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Problem with tenats after leak

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Over Christmas a property that I have been managing had a burst pipe cause by the freezing weather. The burst pipe cause damage in the back room of the property the rest of the property is still in livable condition.

A few weeks back the tenant called complaining that the hot water was not working. I called my plumber to go round but the problem fixed itself (obviously it was due to freezing weather) The problem then happened again on boxing day and my plumber went out right away and told the tenant that they need to heat up the room to thaw out the pipes. The next day I got an emergency call to say a pipe had burst and water was leaking everywhere. My plumber was at the property within 45 minutes of me receiving the call and this was on bank holiday 27th December.

The leak is not fixed and I am waiting for the insurance assessors to come round to sort out the damage.

Today I got text messages and calls from the tenant who was shouting and swearing and being abusive saying that he is not paying his rent as his clothes and a few items were damaged and that the property is not fit to live in and that I did not sort out the problems (that were clearly due to the weather and not the fault of the landlord).

The legal points I wanted to know are:
1. Does the tenant have any legal rights not to pay rent?
2. Who is responsible for the tenants belongings that were damaged
3. The tenant is causing problems, he already owes over a months rent and now is refusing to pay any more. Can he be evicted at the end of the 6 months (section 21)? does a section 21 always work or is it very complicated?
4. Do I have to give the tenant the landlords phone number if the landlord has appointed me to deal with the property?

Thanks for your help,

30/12/2010 00:00

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