Sunday, 29 May 2022

Tenant left four tonnes of rubbish and told landlord ‘take care of the mess’

A distraught landlord has been shocked to discover mountains of rubbish, mouldy food and piles of cat faeces in his flat.

Lee Locking, 56, returned to the home for the first time in five years after the previous tenant moved out.

The man had told Mr Locking he could keep his £400 deposit to ‘take care of the mess.’

But the ‘mess’ is likely to cost in the thousands to clear, rather than the hundreds.

Every room in the property had been left piled high with rubbish, old clothes, food and bottles.

Mr Locking said: ‘Every single room is a state. I can’t even go in without wanting to shower immediately after.

‘When I first went to the property, I’d taken the dog with me. I opened the door and the smell just hit me. I took one look at the mess up the stairs and closed the door and put the dog back in the car, because there was no way I was letting the dog come in.

‘I have no idea where the person slept. A neighbour said they saw the tenant take a mattress from the house and assumed it was being taken to the tip. After seeing the state of the property, I’m not so sure.’

A new bathroom, kitchen and fresh carpets will be needed for the home in Waunarlwydd in Swansea, Wales.

The kitchen is one of the worst offenders, with an overflowing cat litter tray, boxes of rotting food and mouldy milk cartons.

There are more cat faeces piled up in the flat’s bathroom, in the bath itself, with the ‘filthy’ toilet said to be surrounded by old plastic bags and food packets.

Mr Locking had letting agent company John Francis manage the renting agreement and says he feels let down by the firm.

He claims the flat was meant to be pet-free and all potential tenants were meant to be vetted.

Mr Locking said: ‘I’ve been told there is at least three to four tonnes of rubbish to clear. I’m at breaking point with it.

‘I understand that people may struggle with their mental health, and keeping on top of cleaning might be tough for them, and I really feel for them, but John Francis allowed it to get to this state.

‘I feel really annoyed and angry that I’ve let them manage my property for the past five years and this is the state it’s been returned to me in.

‘They’ve taken 12% plus VAT for five years and now they’ve left me in limbo.’

A John Francis spokesperson said: ‘John Francis Lettings takes any customer complaint extremely seriously. We are in receipt of an official complaint from the landlord and which we are currently investigating.

‘We will liaise directly with the landlord to resolve the issues.’

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