A landlord has been left to front a £10k clean-up bill after nightmare tenants left his property filthy, damaged and even rat-infested.
The three-bedroom property in Plymouth had been the home of a young family for five months when landlord Nick Saunders attempted to evict the tenants for failing to pay the agreed rent.
Battle to evict
It eventually took a year for Mr Saunders to recover his property, having originally served a one-month eviction notice.
After repeatedly failing to pay their £600-a-month rent, the couple - who also had two young children - were asked to leave, but a legal dispute dragged out the proceedings for almost a year.
Tenants weren’t what they seemed
Having initially met the prospective tenants, landlord Mr Saunders was confident that they were ‘decent people’, and they’d paid the £300 deposit required.
But the truths soon became clear - first they had lied about their three dogs, having claimed they only had one, whilst it also emerged they didn’t have jobs as they had indicated.
Out of pocket
Mr Saunders is now faced with a whopping £10k bill to clear up the mess that the family left behind, and he’s not alone - unpaid rent and property damage cost landlords £5.4bn every year - a frightening statistic for landlords.
But how did one family cause so much expensive damage? Well, the final bill was calculated based on unpaid rent, legal costs and refurbishment of the house. This figure hasn’t, however, factored in the time Mr Saunders will now lose having to deal with the aftermath of the incident - such as dealing with contractors and presumably claiming on his landlord insurance.
Photos of the property show everything from ripped up carpets and piles of cigarette butts to dog faeces.
Mr Saunders said: “You literally couldn’t breathe when you went into the house because the smell was so bad.
“The dogs were allowed to urinate on the floors, they had taken all the carpets up and when we finally got rid of them, we found two rats in the boiler.”
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