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Sharif continued to pay rent on time but in every other way was setting off alarm bells left, right and centre. By now we had also signed over another property to Trustee Property Ltd. but Sharif was allowing insurance to lapse and council tax to go unpaid – which we had to chase him for repeatedly.
The bombshell came one day when he text to ask if we could send him our bank details as he had dissolved his company "on the advice of his accountant" and needed to pay us from a different account. With all the other warnings that he had set off over the last few weeks, dissolving the company that was contracted to manage our properties without any warning at all was the last straw. Conveniently enough, this action also voided our contract as it was explicitly listed as a prohibited action. Sharif also failed to come up with an alternative contract within an alloted time, voiding the contract a 2nd time over.
We got out. We took back the properties and changed the locks. Sharif protested but it was too late as his own actions had voided the contract between us, and this and many other actions (or inactions) beforehand had destroyed our trust and faith in him.
Three days later I received a call from Salford Council claiming that Sharif had a tenant on an AST at one of the properties. He hadn't mentioned her once, not even when we spoke on the phone as I was taking back the properties. This claim seemed unrealistic as the property she was supposedly renting had Booking.com reviews on it from just a couple of months before, during a time she claimed to be living there. Also, while I was there changing the locks, there were no signs at all of someone living there – nothing in the fridge, nothing in the cupboards. However Salford Council stated that with a signed AST, I would have to let her back in. There was no way to prove however that the AST hadn't just been printed and signed that day.
Thankfully the AST was due to expire in just 14 days' time, and this "tenant" of Sharif's assured us that she would be moving out of the property on or even before that date. On the date she was due to move out, the tenant claimed that she had contracted Covid-19 and had been told to stay put in our property, but that she could not pay rent as she had already paid rent and a deposit to a landlord who she could no longer contact.
Of course, none of this seemed true, but with a signed AST that would now default to a rolling monthly contract and claims of Covid-19, we obtained a Section 21 notice "just in case" while taking her at her word that she would be moving out once her isolation was over in 2 weeks.
Her isolation is now over and the tenant is claiming that she still cannot reach this landlord. The tenant has so far refused to contact the police nor the council to report this landlord, even though if he is real and has really taken rent and a deposit, refusing her entry to this other property is illegal.
The tenant has shown no interest in paying rent – neither reduced rent nor deferred rent. She has an entitled demeanour and talks to me like she is doing me a favour by refusing to engage on the subject of rent.
But what is really odd here is that she claims to be discussing everything with Sharif who has expressed glee via text message that she continues to stay at the property without paying rent, which leads me to suspect that they may be in this together.
I would therefore suggest that you stay away from Sharif Miah of InCityNow or Oracle Estates.
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