Polystyrene and ceramic tiles falling off - rented flat

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Polystyrene and ceramic tiles falling off - rented flat

    Hi everyone

    I was hoping to get some advice about the flat I am renting.

    Every single room in the flat has polystyrene tiled ceilings, including the kitchen and bathroom. Many of these are starting to come off, including one directly above our gas cooker! There is a fire alarm in the corridor but not in the kitchen.

    Another ‘tile issue’ I am facing is in the toilet. The walls have been tiled completely with ceramic tiles and a few tiles have previously fallen (apparently on the head of a previous tenant - ouch!) so there is a big hole where plaster is apparent, and the tiles around are also starting to come off. Looks like it could collapse any time.

    Am I within my rights to ask for the letting agency through which I rent to arrange for the polystyrene tiles to be removed from the kitchen ceiling and for the tiles on the toilet to either be replaced (but because the whole thing is coming off I am assuming this means having the whole room retiled) or removed and replaced by simply painted walls?

    Are there any legal grounds on which these requests might be denied?

    Thank you very much!!


    #2
    You are within your rights to ask for the issues to be sorted out but i doubt there needs to be any legal grounds on which the requests can be denied because there is probably no legal grounds on which your requests can be enforced, although I could be wrong.
    Also in the toilet room there may be a reason that it is fully ceramic tiled, is it just a toilet in there or is there a bath or shower as well? Tiles would be better if there is steam and splashes from the bath or shower, although if they are falling off then it is not really much benefit having them! Sometimes toilet rooms are just single skin brick buildings that were built on to the back of properties and originally used as coal sheds etc before being converted to toilets when coal was no longer needed in which case painted walls could suffer from damp. If you’re in an upstairs flat that won’t apply but if you’re in a ground floor flat of an older property it could be applicable.

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by BTL investor View Post
      You are within your rights to ask for the issues to be sorted out but i doubt there needs to be any legal grounds on which the requests can be denied because there is probably no legal grounds on which you’re requests can be enforced, although I could be wrong.
      Also in the toilet room there may be a reason that it is fully ceramic tiled, is it just a toilet in there or is there a bath or shower as well? Tiles would be better if there is steam and splashes from the bath or shower, although if they are falling off then it is not really much benefit having them! Sometimes toilet rooms are just single skin brick buildings that were built on to the back of properties and originally used as coal sheds etc before being converted to toilets when coal was no longer needed in which case painted walls could suffer from damp. If you’re in an upstairs flat that won’t apply but if you’re in a ground floor flat of an older property it could be applicable.

      Thank you for your reply! I live in flat on the 4th floor, I think it was built in the 1950s and the toilet is a separate room so no steam or anything of the kind.

      I’m more worried about the risk of a ceramic tile falling on someone again and injuring them. Or run the risk of the polystyrene catching fire. It’s quite dangerous. Surely it is a legal requirement to remove these hazards right? I just don’t want the agency to brush it off.

      Comment


        #4
        The property has to be safe for you and your property.
        You can ask for the problems to be resolved, but I don't think you can specify how they are to be resolved.

        The bathroom sounds like a problem with the wall/plaster.

        Polystyrene tiles are notorious for falling off.
        But you might mention that you are seriously concerned about them as a fire risk they aren't a normal material for a kitchen, for example.
        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


          #5
          Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
          The property has to be safe for you and your property.
          You can ask for the problems to be resolved, but I don't think you can specify how they are to be resolved.

          The bathroom sounds like a problem with the wall/plaster.

          Polystyrene tiles are notorious for falling off.
          But you might mention that you are seriously concerned about them as a fire risk they aren't a normal material for a kitchen, for example.

          Thank you. I’ve just seen that the council doesn’t allow those tiles in rented kitchens in our area, so I guess they will have to have them remove to comply.

          Using the toilet in this flat is definitely a hazard. I am surprised the previous tenant hasn’t raised that problem with them. Surely if they decide to do nothing and someone got injured, they could be taken to court, now that they know about the issue? (asking out of curiosity)

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by cfdh View Post
            (asking out of curiosity)
            Several different ways.

            The landlord has a general duty of care to make the property safe for people to live in.
            If they are negligent and fail in that duty and someone is injured, a compensation claim could be made on that basis.
            But this isn't a helpful route, because there's a lot of difficult case law (mostly from the 19th Century).

            If the landlord has obligations in the tenancy agreement that the lack of maintenance puts them in breach of, that would be a parallel claim.

            The most useful route would be a claim under the Defective Premises Act 1972, which is where the requirement that anyone should be "reasonably safe from personal injury or from damage to their property caused by a relevant defect [relating to the property]...

            “relevant defect” means a defect in the state of the premises ... and arising from, or continuing because of, an act or omission by the landlord which constitutes or would if he had had notice of the defect, have constituted a failure by him to carry out his obligation to the tenant for the maintenance or repair of the premise"

            I'd report your concerns about both issues to the letting agency.
            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


              #7
              I think the LA is irresponsible in allowing it to be let with polystyrene tiles in the first place, they should have advised the LL to remove them, they create a hazard in a house fire. As a T, you should look at the condition of the property if you see polystyrene ceilings walk away, if they wont remove and make good, what else wont they do.

              The bathroom, you should take photo's of, the issue will not go away, as water is most likely penetrating between the wall and the tiles and making the adhesion less, sooner or later the weight of the tiles will come down. I would inform the agent to come and inspect the wall(s).

              Comment


                #8
                Why don’t you first ask the landlord (via the letting agents) to repair these matters, before thinking about what law and regulation to quote? The only reason where such an approach would be reasonable is where the letting agents are already known to be evasive. If they aren’t, then why would you immediately want to throw the legal book at them, rather than just asking nicely? Don’t get me wrong, I’m fine with legal arguments, but all has its time and I wouldn’t start with them straightaway, if unwarranted for?

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by ChrisDennison View Post
                  Why don’t you first ask the landlord (via the letting agents) to repair these matters, before thinking about what law and regulation to quote? The only reason where such an approach would be reasonable is where the letting agents are already known to be evasive. If they aren’t, then why would you immediately want to throw the legal book at them, rather than just asking nicely? Don’t get me wrong, I’m fine with legal arguments, but all has its time and I wouldn’t start with them straightaway, if unwarranted for?
                  Sadly they are very evasive, that’s why my first thought was to immediately think of ways in which I could convince them of the urgency of the matter, especially in the bathroom. They usually refuse repairs unless we show them they legally have something to lose. We’ve had issues with mould in our bathroom which was there before I moved in (this is a flatshare) and they refuse to remove the mould because it would mean retiling the wall AND they refuse to fix the extractor.

                  They even leave arranging for repairs to us, they just give us the name and telephone number of the contractor they want us to use and we have to arrange for everything.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    OK in that case throw the full legalities at them

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I have emailed the agency now so hopefully they will do something. But they have never inspected the flat in the 3-odd years my flatmate has lived here so I think the flat will be inspected by their contractor.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by cfdh View Post

                        They even leave arranging for repairs to us, they just give us the name and telephone number of the contractor they want us to use and we have to arrange for everything.
                        I also give telephone numbers of contractors to the tenant and allow them to make arrangements, I don’t know when the tenants will be at home so there’s no point me arranging for a contractor to go round to do work if the tenant won’t be there to let them in.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by BTL investor View Post

                          I also give telephone numbers of contractors to the tenant and allow them to make arrangements, I don’t know when the tenants will be at home so there’s no point me arranging for a contractor to go round to do work if the tenant won’t be there to let them in.
                          What I mean is that we are the ones who have to inform the contractors of the repairs needed, ask for the repairs to be done, provide pictures, everything. It’s normal that we tenants should arrange the best time for the contractor to come, but I don’t think it’s reasonable we should do everything else. The agency does not even warn the contractors beforehand.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by cfdh View Post

                            What I mean is that we are the ones who have to inform the contractors of the repairs needed, ask for the repairs to be done, provide pictures, everything. It’s normal that we tenants should arrange the best time for the contractor to come, but I don’t think it’s reasonable we should do everything else. The agency does not even warn the contractors beforehand.
                            In that case take some pictures of the tiles in the toilet room and phone the contractor up and tell them that the bathroom wall needs retiling. Hopefully they’ll come round and do it.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by BTL investor View Post

                              In that case take some pictures of the tiles in the toilet room and phone the contractor up and tell them that the bathroom wall needs retiling. Hopefully they’ll come round and do it.
                              The contractor already told us re: our mould in bathroom problem that he doesn’t do tiling jobs, so that’s why we have to run this past the agency. Honestly our situation is annoying, I understand why an honest person as you obviously are would not prepare for the worst, but the landlord and the agency are very very dishonest. Don’t think it’s the majority at all, but in our case we got very unlucky, and we have to wait until our contract runs out whilst hoping they will conduct the repairs that will make the rest of our stay less miserable.

                              Comment

                              Latest Activity

                              Collapse

                              Working...
                              X