Ireland: 40 students left waiting for return of €20,000 worth of deposits from accommodation complex - - PressFrom - United Kingdom
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Ireland 40 students left waiting for return of €20,000 worth of deposits from accommodation complex

18:50  31 october  2019
18:50  31 october  2019 Source:   independent.ie

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Forty students have been left waiting since September for their deposits - worth a total of €20,000 - to be returned to them from a private student accommodation complex in North Dublin.

Students have been waiting for the return of their €500 deposits since they moved out of Block A apartments in Hazelwood at the beginning of September.

Forty students decided to move out of the accommodation when they were notified at the start of August that rent would be increasing by 41pc - from €440 to €620 a month for a twin room.

The tenants were then given the option of moving out in 28 days, by September 7.

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Sam Pringle, 20 , spoke to MailOnline after his house of five students in Reading were left waiting Students are left furious after being forced to wait up to THREE MONTHS for nearly £10, 000 in rental deposits to be returned . Cintra Estates and Ridgemoor Properties criticised in row over deposits .

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While the tenants were promised that their deposits would be returned by the second week of September, they still haven’t received them.

The students said they were "very frustrated" by the lack of action.

“They sent us a letter saying that rent would increase by over 40pc for the same room,” said Ana Carolina Solis, one of the students affected.

“This is totally insane and no-one wanted to pay the new fee, and we were panicked, because they gave us three weeks to find new accommodation.

“It’s very hard to find accommodation in Dublin in just three weeks. At first, I thought the price changes were a mistake,” she said.

Ms Solis moved out and said that she was promised that her deposit would be returned in two weeks.

“I sent emails to them weeks after week and the response is always the same - that they’ll pay next week or the week after that or that there was no-one in the office that could give an answer.”

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a woman standing in front of a building: Ana Carolina Solis was a resident in Hazelwood student village. Ana Carolina Solis was a resident in Hazelwood student village.

Hazelwood student accommodation is managed by Home Estates and Lettings Agency. The tenants from Block A said that all of their communication in relation to their accommodation was with the staff of Home Estates and Lettings.

The email and phone number on the Hazelwood student accommodation website is monitored by Home Estates employees.

Sandra - a receptionist at Hazelwood who declined to give her last name - told Independent.ie that the agent company would not be in charge of returning the deposits as it would be up to the landlord, Hazelwood, to do so.

“The deposits would be overseen by the landlord, not the estate agent,” she said.

She confirmed that Hazelwood was the landlord of Block A.

“The deposits are due to be paid out over the next two days.

“There was an issue with the state of some of the apartments were left in, which is the reason for the delay.

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“Some of the deposits will be paid back partially, but the reasons for this will be broken down exactly in an email,” she said.

When a list of queries from Independent.ie was emailed over to the email publicly available on the Hazelwood website, a spokesperson for Home Estates said that the delay in the returning of deposits was due to the poor state of the apartments when tenants moved out.

“Due to apartments being left in a bad state when students departed recently, some deposits have been delayed being returned until we could identify who had left the rooms in a bad state of repair. All deposits will be returned early next week,” the spokesperson said.

They confirmed that Home Estates are the letting agent and added that “deposits are in fact passed for payment and will most likely arrive with departed students tomorrow and Monday”.

Kazim Ersoz lived in the same apartment as Ms Solis in Block A. He said that he’s also been promised many times that his deposit will be returned.

“We’ve waited three months now. Last week, I went to Hazelwood and I started asking questions and none of the staff would answer any of my questions.

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*CAO students will be requested to pay the deposit top up on accepting a room and the 1st instalment of rent between the accommodation offer and Cancellation after check in: If you cancel your room in writing after check in you will forfeit your full deposit and you will be liable for rental fees as follows

“It’s very frustrating and €500 is a lot of money.”

According to the Residential Tenancies Board, a deposit does not have to be returned on the day a tenant leaves accommodation, however "the landlord must return the deposit promptly. Time should be allowed for an inspection at the end of a tenancy, and for any repairs or cleaning to be carried out”.

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Aoife Walsh: Get the administrative part of the CAO form out of the way as early as possible .
As of yesterday, the CAO is open for applications for the 2020/2021 academic year. This year, like every year, I will be encouraging all my students to open their applications as early as possible. Students often delay initiating their application until they have a better idea of the courses for which they want to apply, and are more comfortable with their order of preference, but this is not necessary. The CAO form does not need to be completed in one sitting and, indeed, the most difficult part is selecting courses.

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