CASE STUDY – RENTAL PROBLEM (Difficult Landlord)


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We recently had an email from some tenants looking for advice, and the topic is something quite common as a problem for tenants:

“Dear Spanish Solutions,

We are looking for some advice and were wondering if you could help.

We rent a bungalow on the Costa Blanca at the moment and our landlord has suddenly decided that instead of 900€ per month he wants six month’s rent in advance. We think this is rather unfair, but he got very angry, let himself into the property and left a letter saying that unless we pay he will throw us out. It will take us time to arrange another home, so what do we do please? We do not want him entering the property when we are not there, or there, without being invited in.”

Having examined the contract (you must always have a contract…), our solicitor advised the following:-

1º) The Landlord is not entitled to charge 6 months in advance when the contract says 900 euros monthly. He has no right to get more money in advance.
2º) The Landlord cannot break into the property until the contract finishes. This is absolutely forbidden. In fact it is a crime (trespassing).
3º) The Landlord can not evict them unless they breach the contract. Moreover, an eviction proceeding takes around 1 year, and he can not access to the property until a judge authorises him to be able to.

Our advice was for our lawyer to prepare a letter to the Landlord advising him of these breaches of contract.


  • Warner K Djerwig

    My question> I was forced out of my apartment after 5 years with 30 days to go !!
    I ask for extention in order to move and find another place to live and the landlord say yes
    but ask for more rent to do so. After my move in Febr. 2019 the landlord ask for money for
    re-paint the whole apartment even if no damage was to see exempt what consider to normal after my decorations as well the owners leave some marks.
    I was told, the landlord can’t ask for that after 6 years, may that be true ??

    • Nicola Ryan

      Good Afternoon Warner,

      We understand your frustration.

      Our Solicitor said ¨In principle It is an expense that the owner must assume because it is normal wear and tear due to the use of the house.¨ We hope this helps.

      Kind regards

  • Leo

    I have a question. My landlord refuses to put the Utilities in my name, insisting we give him an extra 100EU a month to cover the bills. This is in our contract. It also states in the contract that he much provide us the bills once a quarter so we can pay any difference that we owe him or vice versa. He never did this and after my repeated requests he finally did so after a year. He presented us with a 1200EU bill without providing copies of the utility bills. Can he do this? Are we required to pay without evidence and if he does have evidence are we still required to pay since he is in breach of contract and isn’t providing us the bills in a timely manner?

    • Amanda Thomas

      Dear Leo,

      You have the right to ask for the utility bills, Kind regards, Amanda

  • Anna

    We have started renting a flat less than 2 months ago. The washing machine broke. We don’t have direct contact with our landlord and all communications are through the letting estate agent. The landlord refuses to pay for the repair or buy a new washing machine. We called an engineer to check the washing machine and it broke as it was very old and rusty. The new washing machine would cost almost the same as the repair. The landlord said to replace the washing machine ourselves and it will be ours. We rented the fully furnished flat and it should be landlord’s responsibility to arrange a replacement or repair. What can we do in this situation? Is the only option to go to court? Is there any organization that protects tenants? The landlord has our 2-month rent deposit + we paid 6 months worth of rent in advance.

    • Amanda Thomas

      Hi Anna, Unfortunately there are not many options here. The solicitor said you have asked the landlord and they have refused so the only option really is to buy a new one and take with you when you leave the house in the future. You can go to Court but it will be more expensive than to buy a new one. Legally you cannot deduct it from the rent as it is two different concepts, With kind regards

  • Lins

    Will i be in breach for trying to make contact with the owners of the apartment, via our urb administrators, behind our corrupt unlawfull rental agents .. 1yr broke wash machibe ruining all our clothes, not fixing tiles on roif black mold bedroom shutdown for 27months, i disputed paid half rent agent cut our electric. Agents stole oyr electric money did not pay owners luz bill. I have chest infection, it has contaminated all our possesions, mold in air conditioners, hairdryer, on my clothes, hoovers rugs, in matresses in ceiling plaster, .over €5,000 of our stuff got to go in bin . i dont think owners know, i need to cut agents out, they are known 4 corrupt, i cant live like this anymore.

    • Amanda Thomas

      Dear Linzi, If you are in our area please contact us by email regarding this case and we will try and help you. If you are in another area of Spain it is best to take local legal advice. Kind regards

  • Melannie McGalliard

    Do you know where and how I can file a formal complaint against a landlord? Is there a chance of getting help? Is the system here legitimate or based on nepotism?

    • Amanda Thomas

      Dear Melannie, You can make a claim through the civil Courts legally. If you would like to send us details by email we can comment. With kind regards

  • Susan Sullivan

    My landlord took me to court as a squatter and the judge awarded me a 5year contract but before being awarded they cut of electricity and even after I won it is still off they r facing fraud charges that I filed and for cutting power but r now trying start a repossession order after breaking the law

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