I was left speechless by my landlord's bizarre rent request… it's divided opinion | The Sun

A WOMAN has revealed how she was left speechless by her landlord's bizarre rent request – but people are divided.

Evie Muir took to Twitter after she and her housemates were stunnedby a text message their landlord sent them after they paid their monthly rent.

She said: "Our landlord increased our rent and… speechless."

The message from the landlord read: "Morning all. Thanks for the rent payments.

"However, the total was 50p short.

"Not a big deal but if you could correct in next month's payment that would be appreciated. Thanks."

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Evie's followers were divided over the baffling WhatsApp message.

While some blasted the landlord's requests as unreasonable – others disagreed.

Lucy said: "You can barely buy two Freddos for 50p."

Another said: "Give him next month's rent entirely in pennies."

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Others said the message was fair, saying Evie should have paid the correct amount.

One said: "Are you so skint you need to keep 50p?"

Ell said: "You wouldn't go to Asda and expect to pay 50p less than the total bill."

Here we take you through your rights as a renter if your landlord makes an unexpected request:

1. You can't be charged admin costs or renewal fees

Estate agents and landlords are banned from charging tenants extra fees to cover administration costs, such as renewing a tenancy.

Other charges they cannot pass onto tenants include to view a property, carry out reference checks and guarantor request.

The Tenant Fees Act was introduced to stop tenants getting ripped off with the extortionate fees which could amount to hundreds of pounds on top of the cost of moving.

The ban has been in place for new rental agreements since June 2019 and for existing agreements from June 2020.

Agents risk being fined £5,000 for breaking the rules, and could be taken to court if they offend again where the penalty could be extended to up to £30,000.

Tenants who think they have been wrongly charged, can complain to their local council which has the power to fine a landlord or agent, according to Shelter.

If the landlord or agent refuses to give you the fee back, tenants can apply through the First Tier Tribunal, as long as they agree the fee was unfairly requested.

Your council will be able to advise you on how to complain through the tribunal.

2. Deposits are capped at five weeks worth of rent

Under the Tenants Fees Act, landlords and estate agents are limited to charging renters up to five weeks worth of rent for deposit.

If you paid more than this for your deposit, for example you paid six weeks, you now have the right to request that any funds exceeding five weeks' worth be refunded.

For example, if your rent is set at £150 a week then the a deposit worth six week's rent is £900. But you can ask for £150 of that back.

You'll need to speak to your landlord directly to ask them to refund the cash.

3. You may be entitled to a payout if your landlord refuses to carry out repairs

Your landlord is responsible for most of the repairs that need to be carried out on your home.

According to housing charity Shelter, these include, fixing issues with the electrical wiring, gas pipes and boilers, heating and hot water, sinks, baths and toilets.

Tenants are responsible for repairing their own furnishings, such as a fridge or freezer if the property is let unfurnished.

You may be entitled to compensation from your landlord if they fail to carry out repair work within a reasonable time, or if your house is unfit to live in due to poor conditions.

This may be in the form of a rent reduction or a payout. If your landlord agrees to this, Shelter advises you get it in writing.

If your landlord won't agree, renters can take legal action to claim compensation either during the tenancy or after it ends.

You must have reported the problem to your landlord during your tenancy, and you have up to six years to make a claim.

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It comes after a woman was horrified after she found a rat climbing out of her toilet – but her landlord said she was lying.

Elle Silvester, 20, from Canterbury in Kent, found rats drowning in her toilet bowl two days in a row in December.

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