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You can live rent-free but there is a catch: Homeowners put three-bed fleapit on the market for nothing so long as tenant agrees to do the DIY

A couple whose house was trashed by a past tenant and stripped bare by thieves have put their three-bedroomed terrace on the market rent free - as long as the occupier doesn't mind renovating the property while they live there. Private landlords Jax Ayton, 30, and her husband David, 46, have made the unusual proposition as they look for a DIY enthusiast to take on their Darlington property. They hope that a new resident can give the end terrace a new lease of life after it was left uninhabitable by a previous tenant. She was evicted after knocking holes in the walls, burning the garage down and allowing her pet cat to defecate all over the floor. But the couple's nightmare didn't end when the tenant finally moved out. Once the property was empty, metal thieves smashed their way in through rear windows and stripped the house of it pipes, boiler and electrical wiring. Repairs will now cost between £17,000 and £23,000. Mrs Ayton said: 'It was a lovely house, it was all done up to a good standard and it was a nice place to live. Click here

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