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I am looking for advice on making sense of a mess of transactions for a 'flat account' which a previous tenant was operating and has handed over to me.

Our landlord had notified me that to my surprise we were behind in rent, and it turns out the person in charge has been pretty slack - not paying bills on time, paying from seperate accounts, not recording transfers/payments in and out.- and then mentioned hes been paying some bills out of his own money.

I am trying to figure out who hasn't paid, and who's owed what. (5 people paying in at different times, paying out to one landlord and four utilities.)

Im trying to think of the best way of going about this but was seeking some advice. I will use a spreadsheet and match up rent payments (from bank records), but I am unsure on how to best balance all the deposits and withdrawals from the various accounts, with payments going out. They all seem to be very asynchronous. Is the timeline (building a chronological order of accounts) approach the only way? Is there any computer software that may help?

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Could you give us a little more information about the situation? Are you moving into this flat, or merely taking over the account? Are there other tenants? –  DJClayworth Nov 7 '12 at 19:51
    
Taking over account. Basically 4 of us and the person taking care of it were paying into this account. Now he has left, and left a bit of a mess, and is claiming owed monies etc. –  theringostarrs Nov 7 '12 at 21:16
    
I asked for flat account bank records and have those, but I'm scared there will be something missing. So I just want to get my process for figuring it out sorted. –  theringostarrs Nov 7 '12 at 21:21

1 Answer 1

You may have to ask each tenant to provide copies of bank statements or copied of deposited checks indicating what was paid, to whom and when. Using a spreadsheet is a good idea. It doesn't have to be complicated.

If everyone co-operates then this exercise might not be too much of a hassle. But if anyone is combative or unwilling to produce these records, I would recommend reminding them that their other choice is to take each other to court where these records would be required anyway - or face eviction if the landlord doesn't get paid.

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Is the amount of money really worth a trip to court? Eviction yes; court maybe. –  MrChrister Nov 11 '12 at 19:36
    
@MrChrister indeed, I think court is a good deterrent/incentive for the flatmates to work this out amicably. –  Jeremy Nov 11 '12 at 21:16

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