Window cleaning - who is responsible

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    Window cleaning - who is responsible

    I own a flat in a block, it is leasehold. I sublet to a tenant. I believe the lease says that the management company are responsible for the external cleaning of the windows to my flat, and that I am responsible for the internal cleaning of the windows in my flat. I argue that the following point in the lease makes them responsible

    Schedule 6 Management obligations of the lease and it reads as follows 4.6 Cleaning etc. Keeping the serviced areas and common parts; "clean and tidy and cleaning of the outside of the windows in the estate at such times as the management company shall reasonably consider it necessary or desirable to do so.

    The management company have said the clause 4.6 referred to above is in regard to common parts and not individual owner's windows which are not communal and that the following clause in the same lease make me responsible

    Schedule 4 Tenants obligations - Reads as follows 1.2 Repair, Decoration and cleansing The tenant shall clean the windows and glass in the premises at least once in every month. Has any body come across this issue before and how could I enforce the management company to perform the cleaning, assuming I can? The windows is at a height which I cannot reach, not even with a ladder.

    #2
    What is the definition of "serviced areas" in the lease?

    They sound different to "common parts" as there's an reference to serviced areas and common parts.
    When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
    Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

    Comment


      #3
      Common parts wouldnt mean individuals flats.

      So it comes down to what serviced areas means.

      Personally Id agree with management company... 1.2 clearly says you must clean the windows, although you could argue that only means the inside.

      If you believe the MC should so the work simply employ a cleaner, send the MC the the bill and sue when they dont pay.
      Advice given is based on my experience representing myself as a leaseholder both in the County Court and at Leasehold Valuation Tribunals.

      I do not accept any liability to you in relation to the advice given.

      It is always recommended you seek further advice from a solicitor or legal expert.

      Always read your lease first, it is the legally binding contract between leaseholder and freeholder.

      Comment


        #4
        Hi, funny old caper leasehold. Before RTM our external windows were never cleaned on the service charge even though, unlike your lease, ours said in simple English "Clean the external windows of all flats every four weeks" in the service charge schedule. No SC cleaning for 30 years! The rain washed the windows. Never short of the stuff.

        When we got RTM, some flats mithered that all the windows should be cleaned every month on the SC as the lease said. Had us cornered. So we did. The unavoidable cost for each flat miffed those mithering because obviously all flats paid the same because all flats had their windows cleaned - maybe they thought Santa would pay?

        Given the ambiguous wording in your lease my first thought would be, are there any windows in the communal parts? If not, contra proferentem could hardly be taken as intending cleaning non-existent windows. No excuse for claiming it was an off-the-shelf contract.

        Second thought would be, is the block high-rise more than ground floor and first floor? Hardly reasonable to have intended every lessee climb cherry pickers to clean their outside windows.

        On the other hand, if your block is low-rise within say two stories and you could pay a local bloke with a ladder and a wet shammy or one of those more common hose and long pole thingies, you could have your own windows cleaned when you liked and at least control the cost and timing.

        Pays to be careful what you wish for in this caper.

        Edit: As your lease uses the word verb "clean" twice in the same sentence, I'd personally say you have some grounds to argue the clause, contra proferentem, refers to two separate service charge actions: (1) Keep the common parts clean and tidy as one act, and (2) clean the windows in the estate as a separate act. If your flat is not within the estate then either you have the wrong lease, the wrong agent, or a lease reader at the 'professional' agents who doesn't understand commas are strangers to lease draughtsfolk.
        Do not read my offerings, based purely on my research or experience as a lessee, as legal advice. If you need legal advice please see a solicitor.

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by t_trader View Post
          The windows is at a height which I cannot reach, not even with a ladder.
          Sounds like a job for a magnetic window cleaner?
          https://www.amazon.co.uk/s/?ie=UTF8&...l_2aqswqim8z_b

          Comment


            #6
            Who owns the windows? are they demised to the flat or the freeholder?

            Comment


              #7
              Most windows get cleaned when there is heavy rain in stormy weather and for most rental flats , the majority of rental tenants don't care if the windows are cleaned or not.

              For compliance to Safety Requirements , most window cleaners will not work on ladder higher than first floor windows .

              Comment


                #8
                I can only imagine the tenant is moaning the outside of the windows need cleaning. I can't think of any other reason for the op post. If so, tell the tenant what Gordon999 just said.

                Comment

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