Advice from all you letting experts

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  • Advice from all you letting experts
  • bluebird
    Member

    My question is, am I entitled to tell the letting agents to go **** themselves until our time is up?

    I would hazard a guess that your rental contract says you should keep the place in a good state of repair, not make as much mess as you want so long as you clean it up before you move out. Hardly worth getting all het up about, just give the tyre marks a bit of a rub with a soapy cloth.

    geetee1972
    Member

    My question is, am I entitled to tell the letting agents to go **** themselves until our time is up

    No you’re not. The landlord can give reasonable notice for access and you must allow that access. I can’t remember what ‘reasonable’ means but it will be specified somewhere, usually its 24 hours notice.

    If the state of the property is poor and this is letting down the owner’s ability to rent the place out, then you might well find they require you to allow a contract cleaner in, at your expense(it will come out of your deposit) to put the place back the condition you’re required to keep it in (as per bluebird’s comment).

    But it sounds like you don’t need to let it get to this. If you’ve got a reasonable landlady, which you say you have, just ask her what you can do to help make the situation good. You’re going to have to do it anyway so you may as well make a start now.

    Premier Icon totalshell
    Subscriber

    hang on .. your only legally required to allow 2 non maintenace visits a year..
    tell your landlord that you are currently living in the property and as such are not ‘dressing it up to sell’ when your tenacy is complete you will naturally leave the property in such condition that the whole of your deposit will be returned.

    wattsymtb
    Member

    It is purely coincidental that this has come up so near to the other letting/landlord threads.

    I rent a property that we are moving out of in a month (notice handed in). Our landlady has quite reasonably put the property back on a couple of letting agents websites and we have allowed them to come and show people around.

    She has now phoned me and said that one of the letting agents has called and complained that the house is in a ‘terrible state’. She is a very reasonable woman and is not jumping to conclusions but wishes to come and look at the property (which I am happy with).

    Being honest the carpets need a clean and there are tyre marks on certain walls etc, but we will sort all of this out in the final week when we have moved our things out.

    My question is, am I entitled to tell the letting agents to go **** themselves until our time is up? I am happy to be accomodating and let them show people round but not if they are going to complain about minor issues that will be sorted out before we leave.

    Thanks

    wattsymtb
    Member

    Ok. Thanks for the advice.

    your only legally required to allow 2 non maintenace visits a year..
    tell your landlord that you are currently living in the property and as such are not ‘dressing it up to sell’ when your tenacy is complete you will naturally leave the property in such condition that the whole of your deposit will be returned.

    This is what I was thinking. I don’t think it will come to that as, like I said, she seems perfectly reasonable. It’s the letting agent I’m annoyed with. They phoned me to go and view the property (themselves, not as a showing) during Tuesday afternoon (this phone call being at 11:00 tuesday morning). I said yes but that we obviously hadn’t prepared it for a viewing. They thank me for being so accomodating and then call the landlady. Feels like when you try to help someone at work and they find something wrong and go straight up through the leadership chain. I’m therefore less inclined to be helpful now.

    Anyway as said, it’s nothing to get worked up about.

    Thanks for the help.

    ell_tell
    Member

    Just make sure you are in the lounge **** away like a chimp next time they show someone around. That’ll learn em.

    Premier Icon thepurist
    Subscriber

    Tell your landlandy the facts as above – don’t think you can do much to stop the agent if she’s appointed them, but if they’re one of a few then maybe you can suggest they’re not the most professional of outfits (that’s not saying much for a letting agent though).

    AFAIK (speaking as a landlord) you have no obligation to live in a show home. The place should be reasonably clean and tidy and any major defects should’ve been reported by you, but that’s all I’d expect until you move out.

    toys19
    Member

    Sorry, chaps whilst you may be well meaning and all, you are actually talking bollocks.

    I am a landlord, and I can tell you the legal facts are I can not enter any of my tenanted properties without my tenants permission (in fact most landlords, including myself do) but to do so risks prosecution for harassment, which is imprisonable. The only way to force entry is with a court order. There are certain people who can enter without a court order, I think, but it ain’t landlords and letting agents.

    If you really want to, write to landlord and letting agent, forbidding access ever. It will not engender you any favours, but it is your right to forbid entry. If you give them this notice and post signs on the door, they are taking fairly serious risks entering without your permission.

    Simplest thing to do is change the locks, if they break in then they have broken in and are in the shit.

    wrecker
    Member

    I’d imagine the L/L has more than one agent on the case, so just refuse/delay access to the one you dislike?

    Premier Icon thepurist
    Subscriber

    FWIW the tenancy agreement should detail all of the stuff about locks & access. eg. the one I use says that the tenant agrees :-

    “Not to install or change or alter any locks or security codes at the Property without the Landlord’s prior
    written consent and to provide the Landlord with a set of keys or the new codes immediately upon
    replacement.”

    and

    “To allow the Landlord or anyone with the Landlord’s written permission to enter the Property at
    reasonable times of the day to inspect its condition and state of repair, carry out any necessary repairs and
    gas inspections, and during the last month of the Term, show the Property to prospective new tenants,
    provided the Landlord has given at least 24 hours’ prior written notice (except in emergency).”

    So I’d check what yours says before following toys19’s advice.

    wrecker
    Member

    Doesn’t governmental statute trump contractual agreements?

    toys19
    Member

    purist, wrecker is correct. You cannot sign a tenants rights away in a tenancy contract, especially not a prescribed contract such as the OP’s AST.
    If you as a landlord think you can force access after 24hrs notice, and you have a belligerent tenant who is knowledgeable in these areas, you might find yourself on the thick end of a coppers truncheon.

    (edit, these things are a grey area, but I take the protective advice of the RLA, and various legal blogs that I subscribe to regarding lettings. They often highlight landlords being blase with the tenants right to “quiet enjoyment” and find themselves in hot water ranging from financial compensation to a prison sentence. Some tenants actively seek to make you look like a tosser in the eyes of the law. Be cautious.)

    The point is, whilst you may and often do have a legal right to access as a landlord, you might not be able to exercise that right legitimately without a court order.

    Thinks of it like debt:
    I say you owe me £100, and I want it. If you refuse to pay, can I legally force it from your person/bankaccount/mattress?
    No. I have to prove it in court.
    Whilst it might be legally true that you owe me the money, if i try and force it from you then i am open to prosecution, regardless of whether you do actually owe it to me or not.

    Rockhopper
    Member

    A friend of mine got on the wrong end of some tenants who knew exactly how the law worked – i think it took him around four months to get them out – he wasn’t allowed into his own house until the day the tenants moved out – including his legal costs he’s now down about £6k plus another £3k to repair all the damage to the house!

    ebygomm
    Member

    We were asked to clean the carpets when the house we were renting was up for sale. I told them we’d be cleaning them before we vacated but if they wanting them doing for viewings I wasn’t going to pay for it, although I’d be happy to do it if they wanted to pay (cream carpets throughout, we’d already cleaned them once during the tenancy). Thought that was more than reasonable but as soon as it came to them parting with money to do something to help sell the house they weren’t so keen.

    If landlords want to only show a perfectly clean and tidy house then they need to accept that they’ll have to wait until tenants move out and have a void period.

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