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  • Landlords in Distress

    Student Tenants Gone. Guarantors. Agent WWYD?

    In brief. Student 4/5 bed property that was let in Sep to 4 tenants. For various reasons of theirs they have left the house after one month, and I do have some short term tenants in place now which go through to January, and advertising from Jan to June 2017 (which is when the original tenants' agreement ended).

    The Agent failed to vet the tenants properly (imo, but not theirs... I wouldn't have let to them) and also failed to put in place the required Guarantor Agreements - failed to chase them up and I think they forgot. They also implied to me several times that they had the Guarantor Agreements in place! Ok didn't say directly but when discussing them and discussing the possibility of claiming through the Guarantors didn't say 'oh we don't have any yet'. I do have the proposed Guarantors' details / emails, that's all.

    Agent is denying any responsibility. Won't even return their Fees - which are greater than the amount of rent received plus my extra costs! Suggesting I chase the tenants for the balance due and if not the (non-) guarantors. I hold the Agent liable. Can I chase the Guarantors?

    By the end of June the property could have let anyway (hopefully) and no loss of income.

    I have made an email complaint to the Agent, been sent their Complaints Procedure, and found out their Redress body.

    What to do... :-)

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    If the "guarantors" haven't signed anything you can't chase them - that much is/should be obvious.

    Your email doesnt clarify as to whether you had specifically asked for guarantors (in writing?) or whether LA had said that guarantors would be in place (in wirting?).

    If you need guarantors, they need to be signed up prior to the AST - otherwise why would anyone agree?

    Without more details its tough to see where you go from here - clearly the LA have screwed up but if you can't demonstrate that you had asked for guarantors (or that they had said guarantors would be taken) then you might be in a tough spot.

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    Yes obvious to me but doesnt seem obvious to the LA !!

    The LA stated policy is no deposits and Guarantor Agreements - which they will put in place.

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    "The LA stated policy is no deposits and Guarantor Agreements - which they will put in place"

    i'm sorry but i dont understand what you are saying here.

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    They "do not ask for a security deposit if the student is able to obtain a UK guarantor"

    They "obtain a signed Guarantor Agreement".

    Well that's what the Agent was meant to do anyway!!

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    Did their policy form part of the terms of your contract? Does the agreement you signed with the LA state this?.

    As an aside why would you ever let a property out without a deposit - especially to students.  Relying only on a guarantor is foolhardy, in partticular if the amount of claim is small.  Say a tenant does £300 of damage and you go to a guarantor for payment.  They say NO.  You have to take them to court - most people will say not worth the time and hassle and that you should put it down to experience.

    Always get a deposit.

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    Yes to the first question.

    It seems to be the norm to do this. I agree with your comments totally. I won't make the same mistake again.

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