Landlord being fussy with cleanliness or am I just dirty

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    Landlord being fussy with cleanliness or am I just dirty

    Hi folks, this has been an issue since the LL has started inspections again (stopped due to Covid). He has done 2 since and each time complained about the state of the place, making it seem like I am leaving the place in utter disarray, and today even said it was causing damage to the property.

    Last time he complained the oven was dirty, the place was generally untidy, the garden needed cutting and windows needed cleaning. I assumed I fixed all these issues because the garden is now well kept, the windows I clean around once every 3 weeks and the oven I cleaned (there was some tough areas I couldn't get on within the inside of the oven, but the glass is spotless).

    The most recent inspection he complained the limescale was building up within the shower, as well as the little gullys the door uses to slide, also there is some dirt in the same sorts of gullys for the back door, the oven is still dirty, there is some soil near the garden fence so might cause rotting and that the carpet was ''filthy''. I'm not having a moan, I just want advice because I am being made to feel like I am living in squalor and that I am a terrible tenant. I've never had this problem before at any other properties, and I've rented 4 different ones. I also regularly cleaning the carpet with a carpet cleaner, but the carpet is in the room next to the garden, so despite getting rugs etc, it does get dirty, I mean I have 2 kids...

    I just want to know any suggestions to keep the place in a good state because it makes me proud to have good feedback, and gives me horrible anxiety about getting kicked out if my LL throws around phrases such as causing damage to the property because I know what he is insinuating.

    The landlord doesn't have any right to determine how you live in the property which is your home.
    There's nothing to stop them giving useful advice if they think that what you're doing or not doing is going to cause damage to the property, but that's about all.

    But the landlord is clearly going to carry on, so your choices are limited to moving out, ignoring the landlord, doing what the landlord "asks" or stop agreeing to inspections (which might be a breach of contract).

    If you do return the property damaged or in a lesser state of cleanliness than you received it, the landlord can claim compensation for that, but they have no right to tell you how to live in the meantime.
    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).


      It's hard to form a judgment to be honest. One person says it's not clean and one says it is - reminds me of arguing with my mum when I was younger about my room!

      Some thoughts:
      Oven, Limescale etc I'd say are irrelevant until you move out.
      Tidiness is not his concern
      The bits about causing damage you should pay some attention to as you know they'll be checked over when you leave

      If you want some honest opinions about whether you're "tidy enough" I'd ask good friends to give you their opinion on the state of your place. You sound like you care though, if that helps - I doubt someone living in a total state would post the question you have.

      All the best


        Thanks for your replies and not jumping on me lol, I honestly am just feeling anxiety about keeping the place to a good standard. It stresses me out so much when the place is messy and I keep buying organisers to help... I will focus on the places he mentioned, like I did last time, but I feel it will be in vain because the LL seems like the kind of person to find a fault in anything unless it is absolutely perfect which will never happen because we are a working family..


          I think that's all you can do.
          When you do leave make sure you do a really good inventory for yourselves and take lots of good photos, you may not need them but you'll be glad you spent that hour.
          Some people cannot be satisfied and the best thing is to be aware of that and not to waste energy trying


            What did he claim was causing permanent damage? I can't see anything from that list, although a lawn can be damaged if the grass is not cut reasonably regularly.


              Originally posted by DPT57 View Post
              What did he claim was causing permanent damage? I can't see anything from that list, although a lawn can be damaged if the grass is not cut reasonably regularly.
              The limescale buildup on the shower & the dirt on the fence posts..


                Dirt on fence posts? He needs a stronger prescription for his "challenge".

                Just thank him politely and nicely for his kind suggestions then ignore him.

                Such a shame tenants don't demand references from previous tenants over the behaviour and sanity of landlords/agents. No legal reason they can't ask afaik
                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...


                  How often is the landlord inspecting?



                    I know, it seems silly that we are being called messy for some dirt in the garden.

                    The LL is inspecting every 3 months, but said in his email that they will increase now that he needs to monitor the place. Eugh, I hate inspections. I've said to my wife that we should start gathering evidence on all the stuff we buy to maintain and clean the place, last haul was 50 pounds for the stuff we used just to clean.


                      Inform him no more often than 3 monthly. Change locks.
                      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...


                        Inspections more than 3 monthly suggests either a serious issue with the way you are treating the fabric of the place, or he's totally overreacting and bordering on breaching your right to quiet enjoyment, only you know which it is.


                          well obv I'd go for the latter, but he would say I am treating the place terribly, so it's a hard situation to deal with without an independent person. If I feel he is doing it too often then I will seek legal advice..


                            Three months is just about on the borderline of what is reasonable. make it clear to the landlord that more frequent visits are unacceptable.

                            It is no business of the landlord how tidy you keep the property. When it comes to cleaning, he cannot expect that you do a spring clean once every three months. So long as no visitor enters the property and cries "Oh my God!" it should be clean enough.


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