Questions of Cash: I moved out but it didn't stop flow of water bills
Friday 18 January 2013
Q. I rented a house from August 2008 to August 2009, paying rent and all bills to the end of August 2009. The house was rented from Real Properties (Doncaster) Ltd, whose registered office was in Retford, Nottinghamshire. This company has since gone into liquidation.
Unfortunately, the landlord apparently ignored all letters from Anglian Water asking for the name of the person responsible for paying the water bill for the period from September 2009. The property was in a very poor state of repair and I believe that extensive improvement work began after I vacated the property, but was not completed prior to the company going into administration. I also believe that the property is still unoccupied.
I am now being pursued by Advantis debt collectors, asking me to pay the water bill for the period from September 2009 to the present day. At their request, I have provided evidence of the addresses I have lived in from that time. Anglian Water must be able to confirm these addresses, as I have paid its water bills for these addresses. Surely, responsibility for water bills passes back to the landlord once the tenant has moved out. CG, Doncaster.
A. The Companies House register confirms that Real Properties (Doncaster) Ltd was dissolved in October last year. Consequently we took the matter up with Anglian Water. A spokesman said: "Our debt collection agency contacted [the reader] as she was still listed as the bill payer at the address until very recently. Following the query from The Independent however, an investigation has confirmed that she did indeed move out in 2009. Clearly, she is not liable for the arrears as she was not living at the address. We have now spoken to the collection agency and [the reader] should not have any further contact from them." Anglian Water apologises for the requests for payment that were sent to you.
Q. We recently had a new gas boiler installed by our usual gas fitter, who is fully certificated to carry out gas installations and whose workmanship is excellent. He purchased for us a new Baxi Potterton boiler from Plumb Centre and fitted it at a cost, including parts, of £1,750. The boiler developed a major leak within days and Plumb Centre changed it for another. The second boiler leaked in a similar way.
My supplier persuaded Baxi's engineer to attend our house, who confirmed that the heat exchanger, the core of the boiler, was leaking. New components have been ordered, but after the same failure with two boilers, I am not convinced that these boilers are of adequate quality.
I wrote to Baxi, arguing that the quality was unacceptable, but I have not received a reply to my letter, nor has our gas fitter received replies to the emails of complaint that he sent to Baxi. Our fitter and ourselves have been inconvenienced and we expected more of a premium priced product. DH, West Midlands.
A. We put your complaint to Baxi. Its managing director for domestic boilers, Andrew Keating, responded: "The heat exchanger used in the Potterton Apollo is a highly reliable product. It is extremely unusual for a heat exchanger of this type to have failed. We are very keen to examine both the heat exchangers and installation on site to see if we can determine what has caused the system failure. Our own engineers were on site to investigate and resolve the problem.
We are providing [the reader] with a five-year warranty, free of charge, which is three years more than the standard two-year warranty that comes with the Potterton Apollo … We would like to stress that we take the quality and reliability of our products extremely seriously and will do all we can to ensure that this matter is resolved." He added the company has no record of your letter being received and that action was taken in response to your fitter's emails to the company.
Q. On 29 December, articles by Simon Read and Rob Griffin considered the transfer of assets by husbands and wives to the one with a lower or non-rate of income tax. Where this involves transferring the ownership of shares, should this be done by advising the registrar of the company? What is the situation on fixed-rate cash ISAs? Can the tax-free concession be transferred to the spouse? What is the situation for anyone having a form R85 savings if the instruction is terminated and does income tax then only apply from that date onwards in the tax year? JL, by email.
A. Mark Giddens, the head of private-client services at accountancy firm UHY Hacker Young, said: "On the assumption that the shares are not held through a nominee – for example, where they are held as part of a managed portfolio – the simplest way to effect a transfer from husband to wife (or vice-versa) will be via the registrar for the company concerned. The full name of an ISA is an Individual Savings Account and as the name implies, this can be held only by the individual. Monies can be withdrawn and transferred to a husband or wife for them to invest, but that investment will count towards their personal ISA allowance.
Regarding the form R85, if the form is withdrawn and the instruction to pay interest gross terminated, you can expect the bank or building society to deduct tax from all future interest credits. Note that it is your responsibility to monitor your tax position.
If your untaxed income for the tax year in question is not fully covered by your personal allowance, you should advise HM Revenue & Customs." (A form R85 notifies a bank or building society that the account holder is not liable for tax on the interest paid. Where a person's income goes up, above their annual tax-free allowance, they have a responsibility to notify HMRC of this change. A separate R85 must be completed for each bank and building society with which a person holds an account.)
Donald MacInnes: 'I have to have £500 a month spare from now until at least 2035'
HSBC becomes first bank to offer five-year fixed rate mortgage with interest rate under 2%
Pension freedoms: How to deal with cold calls from scammers
Wonga results could get even worse this year, chief admits
Barclays new Blue Rewards hands cash to customers. What’s the catch?
- 1 Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin file for divorce after 10 years of marriage
- 2 Rarest Beanie Baby bought for just £10 at car boot sale could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
- 4 Bookies now say Ed Miliband is more likely to be prime minister than David Cameron
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
Katie Hopkins on LBC: Listen to caller taking The Sun columnist to task over migrant comments
iJobs Money & Business
£12000 - £15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An expanding Insurance Brokerag...
£60000 - £70000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...
£30 - 35k (DOE): Guru Careers: We are seeking a Pricing Analyst with experienc...
£24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...
Day In a Page
Surrounded by woodland, this five-bedroom manor house has plenty of outdoor storage space in the form of three converted loose boxes, two smaller outhouses and a woodstore.
This four-bedroom detached home comes with a double carport, useful workshop, garden and two walkways that offer views of the adjacent countryside.
With space for an equestrian business, a greenhouse for growing your own veg, a wine store and a gym; this five-bedroom home has all the ingredients for a country retreat.
This four-bedroom home has exposed brick chimneys and a vaulted ceiling in a breakfast room that's ideal for summer entertaining - the doors open to the patio and garden.
The decked roof terrace of this two-bedroom flat is perfect for summer drinks while large windows and ample storage space make for a light and spacious interior.
Surrounded by approximately 15 acres of grounds, this six-bedroom grade II-listed home has been extensively refurbished yet retains many period features.
This four-bedroom home comes with a two-bedroom cottage and commercial office, with planning to extend, in a stunning courtyard setting.
In a pretty Norfolk village, this four-bedroom family home is surrounded by landscaped gardens, with even a self-contained annex for guests.
A few miles from the seaside at Perranporth, this four-bedroom farmhouse sits amongst nine acres of idyllic grounds - including a lake and two barns used as holiday lets.
This five-bedroom home is arranged over three floors of a converted Victorian hospital, offering spectacular views of the Pentland Hills - only three miles from the city centre.
This four-bedroom detached home comes with grounds that span to approximately 2.5 acres, as well as two large patio areas and a double garage.
This four-bedroom cottage is a Grade II-listed town house, well-located for the thriving market town of Nailsworth.
A four-bedroom apartment on the ground floor of a stunning period property in North Yorkshire, with two kitchens and a large south-west facing garden.
This high-spec two-bedroom home is part of a smart collection of new flats at Beaufort Park and has a large decked balcony that's perfect for summer drinks.
Capitalise on the fabulous views of Trevone Bay by taking two homes and creating one spacious boutique B&B. Just a cliff-top walk from Padstow.
Overlooking a golf course, this six-bedroom Edwardian detached home spans four storeys and retains many period features including the original, operational servants' bells...
On the edge of the city, this six-bedroom home comes with an outdoor swimming pool and a large garage block that has annexe potential.
In a Grade II-listed manor just outside of Bath, this three-bedroom home is arranged on two floors with a skylight in a vaulted roof line.
Open the living room's bi-fold wooden doors to reveal a retro-style kitchen, and a conservatory leading to a paved garden at this three-bedroom home.
A Grade II-listed, four-bedroom home, in a charming Somerset village, with a two-storey studio that could be converted into a holiday cottage
A modern four-bedroom Victorian home, within walking distance to the high street
A luxury apartment in the Gothic mansion of Wyfold Court in Kingwood, offers six bedrooms spread over three floors and a turret
This school conversion, near Stockwell Tube, oozes New York loft style. The one-bedroom flat features double height ceilings and exposed brick work
This six-bedroom Georgian home is on three floors with open fireplaces, a two-oven Aga, an annexe, and cottage gardens with outbuildings and a car barn
High Crest House covers an impressive 9384sq ft, with almost three acres of grounds including a tennis court and summer house enclosed by electric gates
A six-bedroom farmhouse with separate accommodation in converted stables. Situated in the village of Church Aston, within walking distance to the market town
A two-bedroom flat with under-heated walnut floors and bespoke built-in storage. The Tube and Clapham Common are a short stroll away
A refurbished seven-bedroom townhouse with staff quarters, cinema room, superb gym, steam room and plunge pool
A minimnalist four-bedroom home designed to the highest spec, featuring glass walls and a kitchen space lit by a glass roof
Hibernate during winter and make your living during the summer at this busy guesthouse with panoramic sea views, in the village of Lynton
A four-bedroom penthouse next to the Tate with direct views of St Paul's from two floors of luxurious living space
A four-bedroom detached home surrounded by spacious gardens and woodland, close to New Pudsey
An 18th-century, three-bedroom home near Langstone Harbour built from ships beams with vaulted ceilings and wood burning stoves
A five-bedroom semi-detached home with a mix of period and modern features in a popular and convenient location
This five-bedroom red-brick beauty overlooks the village green and sits in just under two acres of land
A three-bedroom villa with self-contained flat, minutes from Lake Windermere
A five-bedroom Victorian home with four receptions, superb gardens and paddock in Pembury
An eight-bedroom house on the south side of the The Green with cinema, wine cellars and summer house
This 17th century beauty is full of rustic cosiness, while the detached home office means you can also run a business
Four exclusive apartments in a Grade II-listed former medical school with 2,275 sq ft of living space and 18ft ceilings
A five-bedroom terraced house on the popular Peterborough Estate, ideally located for both Eel Brook Common and South Park
A state-of-the-art farm-building conversion on the former Cliveden Estate, with 11,420sq ft of internal space, cinema and wine cellar
Windsor Castle overlooks this three-bedroom Victorian cottage located on one of Windsor's smartest roads
A boutique mews house, set around a central courtyard, with three bedrooms and a private roof terrace
A four-bedroom farm-conversion with three bathrooms and two reception rooms
A two-bedroom detached house with ensuite bathrooms and a sun-drenched decked terrace, £750,000
A modern and spacious two-bedroom, penthouse flat with two bathrooms in a prestigious development
A beautifully renovated five-bedroom terrace with three reception rooms and a courtyard garden, £700,000