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Guaranto Question


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I wonder if anyone can offer me any advice on this problem.

Last August I acted as guarantor for my great nephew. During the course of the 1st 6months I kept in touch with the agents who assured me that all was well, as did my great nephew.

The tenancy rolled on after the 6 months and became periodic.

At the end of April I heard that the great nephew had left the flat, although he said nothing to me and asked the agents to check. They went round in May and said that the flat was empty and 'damage' had been caused. Needless to say he has since 'disappeared'

I heard nothing till the 10th July when I received a letter with some strange handwritten receipts for repairs asking for immediate recompense as guarantor for damages, cleaning, new sofa and £800 redecorating costs. Plus rent arrears totalling £280 and a printout. The arrears were from two weeks after he moved in in August before his housing benefit kicked in.

The flat was a tiny grotty bedsit with wallpaper peeling off and the agent said that the great nephew might want to redecorate after he moved in.

The agent said that he had photos of the befores and afters.

I am well aware of my responsibility as guarantor and what I am liable for and will pay for what has to be paid for.

I asked to have sight of the photos on the 16th July so I can consider the letter but as yet have heard nothing, even though my email requesting the photos was acknowledged and confirmed they would be emailed to me.

To date I have heard nothing.

Is there a time limit for this kind of thing?

I would like it sorted and pay what I agreed to be responsible for but I have a feeling that something is not right. It seems to me that the agents are trying to get me to pay for things that either have not been done or saying that things needed to be done that didn't.

Where do I stand do you think?

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Was an inventory taken when g/nephew moved in? If so, then call the agency and explain that you understand your obligations but need to verify what condition the property was in when g/n left.

It's worth remembering that LL can only charge you for bringing the property up to the same standard it was in at time of inventory LESS wear & tear. LL can not expect you to pay to bring the property to 'as new' condition - it is called 'betterment' and is not allowed. By way of example, if the property was in perfect newly-decorated condition when he moved in, that decoration might have an expected life of 7 years. If T leaves after 3 years & the place needs re-decorating again, then 3/7ths of the value has gone in wear and tear so T would only pay 4/7ths.

Of course, if there is NO inventory, LL can not prove what condition the property was originally in. In which case he would not be able to prove the value of his losses in court.

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