Landlord and handyman repairs

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    Landlord and handyman repairs

    My friend is a landlord and a handyman. We were talking about charging his own tenants for repairs he does.

    Can he charge for repairs as a handyman?

    Or, will the repairs he makes be counted as part of a landlord's duties?

    An example might be unblocking a a toilet due to it being blocked with a toilet refreshing block container (the sort you hang over the bowl)?


    #2
    As a landlord you are responsible for certain things, but blocked toilets is not one of them, unless it's a broken pipe or the likes of.
    I've recently had a phone call from a shop that we own, ( not run ), complaining of water coming through the ceiling from the flat above, ( which we also own ), when I phoned the tenants to ask what's leaking I was informed it was the overflow from the sink that had broken off and was just hanging there, but they were still using the sink as normal.
    I kindly asked them to replace the waste etc as it was causing problems downstairs, they were more than happy to oblige.
    I sometimes winder how people get out of bed in the morning, or even exist.

    Comment


      #3
      You can't charge for you own time as a landlord... AIUI. Perhaps if landlord was a company not 100% owned by you but I'd vote to refuse that also.
      I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

      Comment


        #4
        The tenant is responsible for the blocked toilet you describe. I'd get a super expensive plumber and charge it to them. Better still invite them to get the plumber and pay directly.

        Comment


          #5
          He could invoice them for the work or invite them to contact a well known reputable company. It was an accident, but it was their fault.

          I would not get an expensive plumber, as that will encourage them not to report problems in future.....



          Comment


            #6
            If you're talking about repairs that the tenant is liable for and for which the landlord would otherwise not get involved, then it may be possible for him to charge for them, but there would need to be very clear paperwork and agreement surrounding each event. The landlord would not be able to insist that they use him to do the work under the Tenant Fees Act, but he could offer his services for a price. In each case, he would need to be absolutely clear that this was a tenant liability and not something that fell within his repairing obligations as landlord.

            Comment


              #7
              Thanks everyone. I'll give another example:-

              As a landlord (me), the tenant has left the property and two walls have been re- wallpapered in sparkly glittery view-of-the -universe wallpaper complete with rainbow unicorns smiling as they head heavenwards. Previously the walls were neutral and must be returned to neutral. As a landlord, if I do the work can I charge for it , or will it be considered 'landlord's work'?

              If I can't charge for it but have a DIY business, can I charge for it?

              Or would I have to ask the T to arrange to have the work done at their expense, or chose me?

              This might take more than the 14 days(arranging quotes and getting the work done to a satisfactory standard) in which to return the deposit.

              Comment


                #8
                Your claim is for a loss beyond fair wear and tear (which this is!) and you have an obligation to mitigate the loss, which means that you have to resolve it in the most cost efficient way.
                Which isn't as simple as it sounds - because you can't realistically charge for rent lost while the work is done, so time becomes a complicatopn.

                If you do the work yourself, you'd have to do it at cost, because the profit goes against the requirement of mitigation.
                And cost would be limited to any other income lost while this work was carried out.
                If you pay someone to do it, their costs (provided they're reasonable) are allowed.

                Which doesn't really make a lot of sense, but there you go.
                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


                  #9
                  Thanks jpkeates, would the LL who is a handyman, have to prove (at any point) he has lost work due to repairing his own tenants's damage?

                  He would be doing work for the tenant which might be instead of doing DIY for somebody else, and adding that to his weekly work timetable might mean he won't be losing work for somebody else. So he might, or might not, have lost other work.

                  I hope that makes sense!

                  I said to him that if a LL could charge a T for work done, then every LL would set themselves up as a handyman/woman and charge the tenant for time as well as materials, instead of just charging for materials.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    As its a private arrangement the LL can charge what he likes and T can decide what to pay. Nobody is going to be asking for "proof".
                    I would be saying something like, "this is up to you to pay for, you can either get a professional in or I will sort it in the morning for you for fifty quid ?"

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Yes, Section20z, I think that's the thing to do. thanks.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                        Your claim is for a loss beyond fair wear and tear (which this is!) and you have an obligation to mitigate the loss, which means that you have to resolve it in the most cost efficient way.
                        Which isn't as simple as it sounds - because you can't realistically charge for rent lost while the work is done, so time becomes a complicatopn..
                        What incentive is there for the tenant to report problems before they leave? Did they notify the landlord, they had put glittery wallpaper?. So the works could have been done, whilst the tenant was still living there? The landlord may have to take a day off work, which is a loss of a day's holiday.

                        If a tenant damages a wardrobe, because they moved it from one one room to another. If it it happens to be an IKEA wardrobe, then my time to pick up from from the store. Or alternatively, the delivery cost plus my time to wait at the property waiting for the delivery. As well as the time to put the flat pack together again. As well as disposal costs of that wardrobe (some council will remove big furniture items for free for tenants, but will charge landlords, if they book a service).

                        I explain to tenants when they move in, that if there is a problem at the property, they should notify me early one, so they can be resolved whilst they are living there. After they leave, everything is more expensive and I loose rent and it costs my time.

                        I try to be fair to tenants, but tenants have to try to mitigate my losses too.







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