Added 9th March 2014
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By Chris Owen - stayed here from 1st September 2011 to 31st July 2012
the worst experience of my London renting life - on moving into the 2 bed flat, we agreed an itinerary of items which needed addressing and fixing in the property - items which the landlords never once addressed, and which remained unaddressed on exit. These included mouldy and rotten window frames, a lack of wall round the balcony above a twenty foot drop (!), erratic lighting and electricity... and the bathroom (see below)
The departure dispute came amid problems with the flat, and that below, where water was leaking and causing severe damage to the underneath property, and making our flat smell stale and damp. It also made affected our health, giving us coughs and colds.
The bathroom needed gutting - this was the recommendation of four different builders who came to quote on it (the floor was rotten and the walls had extreme damp. The wall tiles were removed to assess the damage of the walls, and these were never replaced, meaning we could never have a shower - for around four months.
The owner of the property below got his ceiling repaired under our bathroom - which involved a hole in the floor for a week and no bathroom - and still we were paying full rent.
we eventually said we wanted to leave and had written agreement to do so on 31st July, but the property management company didn't start inviting visitors until 28th July due to the state of the property.
We were left to dispute being held responsible for the rent during the gap between our agreed exit of the property, and the new tenant arriving in November. This tenant was the 53rd to view the property - a two bed flat in Canonbury in one of the nicest areas of North London - either a lie from the agent about the number of viewings, or a sign of how bad the flat's condition was. The landlord claimed that there was never agreement to exit, despite it being in writing, and they held onto our deposit, and claimed rent on top.
Despite going to the Ombudsman service, a process which took seven months, we were told they couldn't intervene because it was a contractual dispute. The Tenancy Deposit Scheme advised the same - demonstrating how utterly inept the two associations are.
Eventually we were approached by the property management agency saying 'if you go to court, it'll cost you a few thousand to potentially get it back. You might not win - do you want to walk away and give the deposit to the owners and we'll not go to court?'.
there was nothing we could do. I'm still angry about this two years on - we were utterly utterly ripped off. A disgraceful and shameful episode - avoid Cluttons like the plague if you're renting.Sign in to comment on this review