i would have thought that water heater is fair wear and tear
i had a heater break once on me (old) and the landlord replaced it
If the water heater doesnt work, this is landlord problem and they cannot provide you a flat that doesnt have hot water. You should sue them for much more than the deposit amount for not providing you with a reasonable place to live!
Perhaps you could negotiate the amount of the alleged repair cost on a without admission basis.
Do you know the background of the landlord?
You're screwed. Landlords have the power once you hand over that key. It's an odd one though. Unless you did intentionally damage the heater (some kind of external damage - I'm slightly suspicious that you haven't used the heater since returning) then I can't see how it is anything but wear and tear. Example: our landlord just paid 15k to get the air conditioning fixed.
What you should have done is get the heater fixed and have landlord pay for it (as someone above notes, it is the LL's responsibility. By ignoring it, you opened the door and the landlord jumped right in.
Lesson learned I hope. Never trust a landlord. Hold back the rent for the equivalent of the deposit and commit to paying for anything you have genuinely damaged. Landlords don't like this? Unlucky. There's nothing they can do about it.
Oh, and don't take cheques. It's 2022.
Last edited by FrancisX; 22-09-2022 at 07:26 PM.