Property Hawk the landlord's homepage since 2006
Free Tenancy Agreement FREE tenancy agreement
Free Landlord Software FREE landlord software
Home | Property Manager | Free ASTs | Landlord Forms | Mortgages | Insurance | Inventory | Magazine | Landlords Bible | Directory | Forum | Training | News / Blog |

Monday, June 21, 2010

Tips on Tenancy Deposit Disputes 2: Verbal Agreements

Tip 2: Don’t make verbal agreements.

Verbal agreements are notoriously difficult to prove, and reliance on them is asking for trouble. You may have a touching sob story about why you trusted the tenant, but how nice they seemed or how well you knew their aunt is unlikely to influence the outcome of your dispute. Renting out a property is a business transaction and should be treated with the appropriate formality regardless of who the tenant is.
If you have made a verbal agreement with your tenant and you find it is the subject of a deposit dispute, all is not lost. A compelling argument can be pieced together from emails, phone bills and other fragments of evidence, which can be used to show that a particular agreement was reached. Adjudicators employ the civil standard of proof and determine cases in the balance of probabilities. They are looking for evidence to show which version of events is the more likely. It doesn’t necessarily take a great deal of properly presented circumstantial evidence to outweigh a bare denial on the part of the tenant.
The same is also true if the tenant claims you made a verbal agreement which you deny. With the truth on your side, a bit of detective work can usually create a solid case. If you are the type of landlord who never makes verbal agreements, then a little evidence of your usual business practices may also be persuasive.

Tom Derrett is the Principal of Deposit Claim
 and an expert on the Tenancy Deposit Scheme.

Bookmark and Share

1 comment:

Tom Derrett said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.