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If you are renting a home, whether from a social landlord or housing association, which has fallen into disrepair through no fault of your own you may have a claim against your landlord.
All landlords have an obligation to ensure that your home is in a reasonable state of repair to reside in. If your landlord has failed to repair faults which you have reported to him in your home for example, damp, mould, electrical faults, infestation problems and this has resulted in your home has becoming damaged we can help.
At Driscoll Kingston Solicitors we understand that living in poor conditions can seriously affect your quality of life as well as cause distress, this is when you need a specialist team on your side. We can help you obtain the compensation you deserve for the damage sustained to your home as a result of your landlords failure to repair and we can obtain a Court Order to force your landlord to repair your home. The Courts often award compensation of around £1500 – £3000 for those living in severe conditions in addition to ordering landlords to repair the home. You are entitled to claim for up to 6 years.
To find out whether your landlord has breached the terms of his contract to you as a tenant you will need legal assistance.
Driscoll Kingston Solicitors have a team of experts in our Housing Department specialising in this area. We can provide a fixed fee service and a ‘no win no fee agreement’ where possible. Our fees will be paid by the landlord at the conclusion of the case.
Please contact us today and speak to our specialist department for help.
Stated that they have issues with damp and mould.
Stated that their homes were not in a good condition.
Stated that they had plumbing problems.
Said that they had electrical issues at their property.
Stated that they needed property maintenance.
Your Landlord’s Responsibilities
That your home is in a good state of repair structurally
That your home is free from damp and mould
That your drains and gutters are clean and working as they should be
That you have a working heating system
That you have sufficient means to ventilate your property via window and working extractor fans
That you have safe access to gas, electricity and water within your home
That you have working sanitisation facilities ie toilets, basins, sinks, etc.
That your home is free from infestation such as rats, mice and bed bugs.
Eligibility to Claim
Is your home currently in a state of disrepair?
Have you complained to your landlord on more than 1 occasion regarding this disrepair?
Have they failed to carry out satisfactory repair to your property within a reasonable period of time?
Housing disrepair calculator
Use the calculator below to work out an estimate of how much compensation you could be entitled too.
How much will it cost me to bring a Housing Disrepair claim?
We work on a ‘No Win, No Fee’ basis. If your claim is successful, your landlord will pay our reasonable fees. If your case is unsuccessful then we will not charge you.
In terms of any compensation you receive, we take a maximum of 35% from your compensation to cover our success fee. The cost of an After the Event Insurance Policy is also taken from any compensation you receive which is currently priced at £666.40. The main purpose of the claim is to force your landlord to carry out the repair work so any compensation that you receive on top of this is deemed a bonus by our clients.
How long will it take for my Housing Disrepair claim to settle?
Generally speaking, it can take between 6-12 months for your Housing Disrepair claim to settle. There is a Protocol in place that we must use to bring your claim and this sets out the time periods that both your landlords and ourselves must keep to. After the protocol ends we may need to issue court proceedings on your file if we have not been able to agree settlement. We therefore allow for a full 12 month period for the claim to settle although some claims settle much sooner than this. Sometimes it may take more than 12 months to settle a claim if the matter is very complex or there has been unforeseen delays.
How will I know what repair work will be carried out to my property?
As part of your claim, we obtain a Surveyor Report from an independent court-appointed expert. This Surveyor will attend your property and will prepare a report which sets out what disrepair is in your property and what repair work is necessary. We send this report to you and your landlords and any settlement agreement must allow for these repairs works to be carried out.
Who will pay for the repair work once settlement has been agreed?
Usually you have up to 3 years from when the accident occurred to make a claim.
For industrial disease claims, you have 3 years from when you realise that your symptoms are caused by a work-related illness, or when it is discovered by a medical expert.
How much compensation will I receive?
Your compensation will be calculated on a rent reduction basis. We will take into consideration how long you have been complaining to the Defendants about the defects (the ‘notice period’), how much monthly rent you pay and the level of inconvenience that you have suffered as a result of living in a house that is in disrepair.
If you have only suffered minor inconvenience then we would reduce your rent by 10-15% whereas if you suffered severe inconvenience then a reduction of 40-50% could be applied. In rare cases, the courts have awarded up to 80% reduction of rent for the most severe cases. Our helpful Rent Reduction Calculation can give you a general outline of the level of compensation that you might obtain.
Please note that there is a 6 year statutory limitation in place so you can only claim for the last 6 years that you have been complaining to your landlord for despite the fact that this time period may have been longer.
I am worried that my landlord may evict me if I bring a claim. Can they do this?
No, it is illegal for your landlord to evict you as a result of bringing a claim for Housing Disrepair. Generally speaking, the Housing Associations and Councils that we deal with understand the law and your rights.
Can I claim back the cost of damaged furniture, appliances and clothing?
Yes, you can claim back the cost of items that have been damaged as a result of living in a property that is in disrepair. The courts understand that damp and mould can ruin sofas, wallpaper, clothing and soft furnishings meaning that our clients have to either throw these items out and replace them or spend a lot of money on cleaning products to cover up the smell. Leaks within properties can also cause electrical items to become void meaning they also have to be thrown out and replaced. Sometimes clients have sentimental items that have been destroyed which can be difficult to value but we will work with you to outline the inconvenience that you have suffered as a result of this loss.
We ask that you provide as much evidence in support of these losses in terms of receipts and photographs in support of this loss.
Will I have a go to Trial?
Most of our claims settle prior to Trial. We will make every reasonable attempt to settle your claim with the Defendants prior to the matter going to Trial.