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  • #986489
    haydiemay
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    Hi,
    I am a myotherapist and was renting a room from another local business. So I was running my business through theirs.
    The original agreement (verbal only) was that I was to be charged $30/day 6 days a week, plus 3% commission of my services.

    This was all well and good, until a couple of other financial factors came into play. At the end of November, and notified my ‘landlord’ of my leaving due to financial difficulty. At that point I told her by the end of December I would have moved my things out of the room I rented.

    The landlord then proceeded to tell me that if it makes it easier she can just charge me for the days that I was actually there, at not for the 6 days a week of our original agreement (as I was not practicing every single day of the week, just when I had clients). I assumed this agreement would be for both November and December as I hadn’t received my November bill yet, though dates weren’t clarified.

    I thought this was quite understanding and generous of the landlord as they knew about my financial position and I thought they were trying to help, and their business was doing pretty well and if I was renting that room it would have literally been empty space. So I was basically giving them money for a room that wasn’t going to be used anyway.

    So I ended up being a little sick, and being Christmas time was generally very busy, and was only there 6 days of the month.

    I finally received my bill and the landlord had continued to charge me for 26 days in November, and 24 in December.
    When I brought this up with her, her response was ‘No I was proposing that could be the new arrangement, starting January, if you had stayed on to help you out’

    When we made the new arrangement, I had already clarified I was leaving by the end of December, and she said ‘we will charge you the days you’re here’, nothing about starting in January, because I made it clear that I wasn’t going to be there in January. This was at the end of November, it wouldn’t have been wrong of me to believe that this new charging agreement would have been made effective from then on (keep in mind, I hadn’t received my November bill yet).

    Her response to my points was that ‘nothing was in writing stating it, so nothing changes’. As if just dismissing me like there’s nothing I can do about it.

    All of our arrangements and agreements have been verbal, nothing was ever in writing about anything. I never signed anything for her, nor received any written documentation to anything whilst I was there, except the monthly bills.

    Although personally having thought about it now, changing the November bill was wishful thinking on my behalf so I conceded that it was fair to leave it as is.

    So I am being charged almost 4 times the amount I was expecting for the December bill because she has literally just changed her mind on that agreement, or the person running the business (not the actual owner, who was the only person I discussed agreements with) told her that wasn’t acceptable. I worked that month believing I was being charged for the days I was there, only.

    PLEASE tell me there’s something I can do. I know legally our verbal agreement is unreliable, but surely having our whole arrangement only on a verbal agreement must be worth something.

    Thanks in advance – Haydie

    #1158041
    Anonymous
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    • Total posts: 11,464
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    Hi Haydie,

    Sorry to hear you’re having a tough time. I hope that some of the brains trust here can give you some good advice.

    Thanks for joining the forum,
    Jayne

    haydiemay, post: 182241 wrote:
    Hi,
    I am a myotherapist and was renting a room from another local business. So I was running my business through theirs.
    The original agreement (verbal only) was that I was to be charged $30/day 6 days a week, plus 3% commission of my services.

    This was all well and good, until a couple of other financial factors came into play. At the end of November, and notified my ‘landlord’ of my leaving due to financial difficulty. At that point I told her by the end of December I would have moved my things out of the room I rented.

    The landlord then proceeded to tell me that if it makes it easier she can just charge me for the days that I was actually there, at not for the 6 days a week of our original agreement (as I was not practicing every single day of the week, just when I had clients). I assumed this agreement would be for both November and December as I hadn’t received my November bill yet, though dates weren’t clarified.

    I thought this was quite understanding and generous of the landlord as they knew about my financial position and I thought they were trying to help, and their business was doing pretty well and if I was renting that room it would have literally been empty space. So I was basically giving them money for a room that wasn’t going to be used anyway.

    So I ended up being a little sick, and being Christmas time was generally very busy, and was only there 6 days of the month.

    I finally received my bill and the landlord had continued to charge me for 26 days in November, and 24 in December.
    When I brought this up with her, her response was ‘No I was proposing that could be the new arrangement, starting January, if you had stayed on to help you out’

    When we made the new arrangement, I had already clarified I was leaving by the end of December, and she said ‘we will charge you the days you’re here’, nothing about starting in January, because I made it clear that I wasn’t going to be there in January. This was at the end of November, it wouldn’t have been wrong of me to believe that this new charging agreement would have been made effective from then on (keep in mind, I hadn’t received my November bill yet).

    Her response to my points was that ‘nothing was in writing stating it, so nothing changes’. As if just dismissing me like there’s nothing I can do about it.

    All of our arrangements and agreements have been verbal, nothing was ever in writing about anything. I never signed anything for her, nor received any written documentation to anything whilst I was there, except the monthly bills.

    Although personally having thought about it now, changing the November bill was wishful thinking on my behalf so I conceded that it was fair to leave it as is.

    So I am being charged almost 4 times the amount I was expecting for the December bill because she has literally just changed her mind on that agreement, or the person running the business (not the actual owner, who was the only person I discussed agreements with) told her that wasn’t acceptable. I worked that month believing I was being charged for the days I was there, only.

    PLEASE tell me there’s something I can do. I know legally our verbal agreement is unreliable, but surely having our whole arrangement only on a verbal agreement must be worth something.

    Thanks in advance – Haydie

    #1158042
    JacquiPryor
    Member
    • Total posts: 2,344
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    Hi Haydie,

    I offer this as ‘food for thought’ and not advice on your situation.

    Generally an agreement (verbal or written) implies there has been a meeting of the minds; that both people are of the same understanding. The discussion you had at the end of November (regarding only being charged for the days you were actually there) doesn’t sound like there was such a meeting of the minds – that you assumed this would apply from the date of the discussion forwards, where as it sounds like the other party has meant this arrangement to perhaps keep you from leaving at the end of December.

    Pursuing anything ‘legally’ that could reduce the December bill is going to be time consuming & possibly costly.

    My maths says that you feel you should have been charged $180.00, and they are charging $720.00? The difference therefore being $540.00.

    Perhaps it is worth contacting the landlord (preferably in writing), outlining your understanding of the discussion (being that only being charged for the days you were there would include December) and it would appear that their thoughts would be for this new arrangement to commence from January, should you stay on (but, that this was not made clear to you) – and, maybe offer to split the difference? i.e you absorb $270.00 of the December invoice, as do they (so you would pay a total of $450.00). This additional $270, if they agree will more than likely be cheaper than having to pursue any action with no guarantee of success. (This $270 is less than most lawyers’ hourly fees!)

    Anyway – like I said – food for thought until someone more in the know on rental matters pops in to comment.

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