Tenants’ problems – part 1

Where does the responsibility of the tenant end and the landlord begin. Toby’s friend was adamant that the tenant is always right and the landlord should jump to attention and fix a problem immediately. Landlords are ogres and tenants are defenceless little mice. 

But is that the case? We’ve all come across a tenancy where the landlord has been summoned to deal with a lighting issue and all that was wrong was that a light bulb needs replacing. Or the shower room leak that turned out to be the toilet brush holder tipping over. These are examples of clear overreach and tenants thinking that just because they pay rent, they can have access to the landlord 24 hours a day for trivial matters that are not his or hers to deal with. 

And what about the tenants who summon you for one problem, have you call out, say, your plumber who spends a lot of time tracking a leak, departs and invoices you, only for said tenants to remember three days later that there is a dripping tap in the kitchen! Aargh!!!

Toby’s view is that landlords should be able to raise invoices claiming money back from tenants for time wasted, trades people summoned out with a callout cost and actual stresses caused!

Actually, being called out a lot where the wear and tear is getting above normal levels should be ringing alarm bells. Should standard fittings wear out during one short tenancy if x people are living there? Are there more people living there surreptitiously? Is the property being sublet multiple times for short stays? Or did my builder use cheap fittings in the first place so he could make more profit off me?

In the press recently, scare stories were being escalated about government plans to make things even tougher for landlords (https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10921407/Landlords-refund-rent-homes-not-kept-good-condition.html). It would appear that no matter how sympathetic and proactive landlords are about the environment they provide and maintain, they must be made to jump through ever more hoops!

The tenant/landlord relationship is a balancing act. When someone has found the right balance, could they let me know?!

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