83 King Street, Leeds, LS27 9ES

Added 20th March 2014

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1. Tread carefully

By Maria Spadafora - stayed here from 20th April 2010 to 31st July 2012

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I reported quite serious problems with this property (lack of ventilation in the cellar causing a build up of condensation so bad water dripped off the ceiling, through a light bulb, and blew the electrics on more than one occasion). The electrics also hadn't been checked before I moved in (the last given date was 2006). They visibly were very old, with broken circuit covers and exposed wires. The landlord/estate agent only took action when a fire almost started - caused by water getting into the circuitry. Thankfully we were home and the smoke alarm woke us around 2am. Only then (two years after I started complaining) did they install air bricks and the cellar improved very quickly, plus they had to remove lots of wiring and install a brand new circuit panel. It was only when my son and I were put at serious risk of fire that they took action. Off the record their regular odd job man told me the landlady was actually a nice lady (I never actually met her) and had known for years work needed doing to the cellar, but didn't want to spend the money.

Current and future tenants should at least be safe from dodgy electrics and fire hazards, but I doubt problems with the general damp have been solved. Despite using dehumidifiers I had to throw away a number of personal items (such as leather shoes) that repeatedly went mouldy. There were also large patches of rising damp on certain walls (they'd been painted over before I moved in).

I made a formal complaint about negligence that was brushed aside by the estate agents (Manning Stainton). I did not find them pleasant to deal with. I was happy to get out of there and move on. And, despite the danger we were put in, and the damage to our belongings because of damp conditions, for the first time in my 25 years of renting I had money removed from my bond - a £10 charge for a mark on the wall cause by a chair leaning against it.

So my advice to anyone considering renting this property is ensure they are asking an appropriate rent (they raised it considerably after I moved out), check for signs of damp and tread carefully.

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Reply to Maria Spadafora:
Comments:
J kase said:

See: https://www.gov.uk/private-renting/your-landlords-safety-responsibilities Apart from the Landlord’s Common Law duty of care, the Landlord & Tenant Act 1985 (and several other statutory regulations ) requires that the electrical equipment is safe at the start of every tenancy and maintained in a safe condition throughout the tenancy. Electrical hazards are also covered by the Housing Health and safety Rating System under the Housing Act 2004. In the case of commercial property and houses in multiple occupation there is a statutory duty under the Regulatory Reform Fire Safety Order 2005 for the responsible person (the property manager) to carry out annual Fire Safety Risk Assessments, which include electrical safety risks. If you let property you must ensure that the electrical system and all appliances supplied are safe – failure to comply with the Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994 and the The Consumer Protection Act 1987 is a criminal offence and may result in: A fine of £5,000 per item not complying Six month’s imprisonment Possible manslaughter charges in the even of deaths The Tenant may also sue you for civil damages Your property insurance may be invalidated These regulations are enforced by the Health & Safety Executive.

on 7th May 2014 at 12:53pm