Tenant disabled mid tenancy

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    Tenant disabled mid tenancy

    My situation as a landlord

    3 student HMO fixed for 2 yrs, 1 person wanted to leave contract mid term after 1 year, I told the tenants find a replacement and we do a new contract if the replacement passes reference checks

    Replacement found, references all good about to sign new tenancy but just got reported that tenant 2 wanting to stay is facing disability as per doctors note.

    Now my house is not equipped for disabled friendly.

    What are my options

    1) can I still go ahead with the new tenancy to be signed knowing one of them might be disabled?

    2) Where do I stand if I were to continue the existing tenancy and not take the new tenant on new contract instead allow the 4th new person to swap the tenancy with the outgoing person..I have seen NRLA template to deal with this.

    3) take a reduced rent with only 2 students and continue with existing tenancy. But not sure if this means I have to provision for disabled person. And I don't think in the short time changes to the property can be done.

    Any other options you could think of?
    What is the best thing to do under this circumstances?






    #2
    What sort of disability?



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

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      #3
      Injury in spine reported. Not able to walk currently. But what happens in future is unknown as this happened recently. The tenant might need to live with this condition forever and take painkillers..the situation is bit uncertain at the moment

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        #4
        I took up a new tenancy in July 2010, 3 person HMO, and had to give up work as disabled in Dec 2011 (neurological condition).

        Stayed as a tenant in the same place until 3 months ago when I applied for and secured a social housing flat.

        You don't have to make any special adaptations for a disabled tenant.
        If they are needed then you may be asked to agree to allow them, but it's not your expense to fit any.
        It may (read will) will be your expense if you want to remove them if/when no longer needed.

        So although I don't know your tenants prognosis I wouldn't worry too much about it - as long as the rent is below or not too much above LHA rate.
        Obviously the tenant will not be working and will be claiming benefit, so in a HMO their UC Housing Element will be set at 1 bedroom LHA rate for the area.

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          #5
          Do I need to put any clause for disability on the AST which won't will stop the tenant to force the landlord to make structural changes to allow the disabled person to live in the property or anything similar?

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            #6
            It would be an unenforceable clause and potentially a breach of the Disability Discrimination Act.

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              #7
              You can't contract out of compliance with the Equalities Act.
              I am not a lawyer, nor am I licensed to provide any regulated advice. None of my posts should be treated as legal or financial advice.

              I do not answer questions through private messages which should be posted publicly on the forum.

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                #8
                Originally posted by zrux View Post
                Do I need to put any clause for disability on the AST which won't will stop the tenant to force the landlord to make structural changes to allow the disabled person to live in the property or anything similar?
                As said above a landlord cannot be "forced" to make any changes or adaptations for disability - so it's a non-question.

                Where do urban myths like this get started?

                Under the Equality Act 2010 you are required to make 'Reasonable Adjustmants' if asked by a disabled tenant - that's reasonable adjustments, not major alterations.

                From Mencap:
                Under s20 EA 2010, a landlord may be required to make changes to any policies or practices they have which disadvantage a tenant because of their disability. This includes changing a term of a tenancy agreement. For example, a term saying pets are not allowed in the property could be changed to allow a disabled person to have an assistance dog.

                Where a tenant requires ‘auxiliary aids and services’ to rent or live in the property, these may have to be provided. An example may be supplying a tenant with a copy of their tenancy agreement in a format that is more suited to their needs, such as easy read or braille.

                However, landlords will not usually have an obligation to make structural changes which would substantially and permanently alter the property. For example, there is no obligation to remove walls, widen doorways or install permanent ramps, or to carry out any change that would alter the physical features of the property.
                From Scope: https://www.scope.org.uk/advice-and-...ing-your-home/

                Go further than that and look at the actual legislation: https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/15/schedule/4
                Schedule 4, paragraph 2(8) of the Equality Act 2010 clearly states: ('A' being the landlord or he controller of let premises)
                8) It is never reasonable for A to have to take a step which would involve the removal or alteration of a physical feature.

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