Roof window problem

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    Roof window problem

    My current tenants moved in at the end of May. I obviously did the inventory when they moved in and it was all in order. Whatever was not had been noted.

    In June one of the tenants said the roof window in one of the bedrooms was broken.

    It is an old window and we wanted to replace it anyway, especially as it's not Velux and they are old.

    However, they were not broken when we did the last inspection before they moved in.

    Today I went there to inspect it and the window is much worse than what it was, now it doesn't close at all and the fitted blind (nearly new) is completely borken.

    None of these things were like that when they moved in.

    My queston is, is this something they are liable for or would it be considered wear and tear?

    I don't want to get in a fight with the tenants for no reason, I knew the window was old and I wanted to replace it, but it was certainly not broken nor was the blind.

    I was very surprised, it seems to be more than simple wear and tear...




    #2
    Something being broken is not fair wear and tear.
    Without seeing the window it's hard to imagine whether or not it could be broken by accident or if it would have to be deliberate.

    If you do want to recharge the tenant, don't forget to adjust the claim for the age of the window, because it sounds like you've had a lot of use already.
    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).

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      #3
      The window is old, it was already there when we bought the flat in 2011.

      However, it was not broken! We did some repairs before the tenants moved in and found no issues with the window.

      As for the blind, it is around 2 years old, it is certainly not old, I was shocked that the state of it...

      Funnily enough, I have a video that the tenant sent showing the problem with the window. In that video the clind is perfect, not broken like it was today, so clear evidence that they've done it.

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        #4
        Could the blind damage be caused by wind coming through the broken window?
        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).

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          #5
          Nope, no chance. It's 100% mishandling because it is a fitted made to measure blind that actually is fitted to the glass. It's not a roller blind or anything.

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            #6
            Replace the faulty window and charge the T for broken blind (50% of original cost)?

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              #7
              Breakage doesn't mean it wasn't fair wear and tear.

              Structural materials are prone to fatigue failures. Plastics can become brittle as the result of plasticisers evaporating or UV damage. One would need to know the exact failure mode to establish fault.

              Also, the expression is wear and tear, and the tear part implies that some level of minor damage is inevitable.

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                #8
                Originally posted by onecuriousll View Post
                I knew the window was old and I wanted to replace it,
                So simply replace it as you were intending to do anyway.

                If the (already needed by yout own admission) replacement were then to get broken then that would be a different issue.

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                  #9
                  Hello all, thanks for all your replies.

                  Changing a window is not something cheap.

                  Also, it's a leasehold flat, the freeholders need to authorise it and they make some requirements such as the contractor needs to be FENSA approved. This is fine for normal windows, but it proved to be incredibly hard for roof windows that are done by roofers rather than glass people. Most of these are not FENSA registered.

                  The tenant broke the window that was not broken. It's the hinge rather than the glass, so it can still be closed. The one I wanted to replace was the kitchen window, but he managed to break the one in the bedroom, which had no problems.

                  I have asked the contractors to evaluate how the damage was done and let's see what they come up with. It may be a case of a claim for accidental damage on my building's insurance.

                  What I needed to know was whether it would be fair to deduct something from the tenant's deposit.

                  What would you do in my case?

                  Thank you!

                  Comment


                    #10
                    If you can't get a FENSA (/CERTASS) fitter, you will need to pay for building control consent, regardless of what the lease says. Using a FENSA fitter is likely to be the cheaper option.

                    It sounds like the window was near end of life, so even if you can find the original cost, there will be little of that left when you discount it for the amount of useful life that has been used; you cannot charge a penalty for breaking it. Inflation will further reduce the effective value.

                    Incidentally, having recently broken a double glazing hinge myself, they are really quite flimsy. It takes relatively little force to bend them if they stick and most people will not break them often enough to have a good feel for how much force can safely be used. (This was in an owner occupied context, so I had to pay the full repair cost.)

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                      #11
                      Get it fixed! Tenant probably made it worse to get you to put in a new one. Once it is done take pics and notes on condition and give to tenant. Roof blinds are notorious for going wrong I find especially in the hands of someone not taking are.
                      If anything else looks like deliberate damage it's S21 time.



                      Freedom at the point of zero............

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