L's right of access for inspection or viewing?

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  • Jon66
    replied
    . . . xpost. Thank you jpkeates. You said what many were thinking.

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  • Jon66
    replied
    I think if it's that much trouble to ensure the property remains in good condition I'll just give them notice.

    Interestingly auto correct turned my ensure into endure (or I miss hit a key) and endurance is what this is becoming. So I think I'll cease posting for a bit and go and light the barbie and have a swim. Tally ho . . .

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  • jpkeates
    replied
    Originally posted by BobsToaster View Post
    Landlords are allowed to enter by law in emergency without notice which the O/P didn't mention as your point of pedantry attests, but the poster I referred to stated the landlord could enter whilst the tenant is there, then insisting on remaining when the tenant is absent!
    That isn't what the post you linked to and quoted said.

    Reading nuance can be difficult for some, but please please try...
    I have no authority on this forum, but you are making great and helpful points and then devaluing them with this.
    It's both insulting and constitutes trolling.

    It's easier to be polite and you will get more from the forum if you fit in with the community guidelines.

    Which is what the O/P is asking about. So my reply was yes, you might even be legally entitled to do it, but the tenant is equally entitled to sue you for any damages that are likely attributable whilst the tenant was absent!
    That's a good point - which has been made fairly often in the decade that this thread has been going!

    Just because something is legal doesn't make it a good idea.

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  • BobsToaster
    replied
    Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
    That has nothing to do with a landlord entering without notice
    Landlords are allowed to enter by law in emergency without notice which the O/P didn't mention as your point of pedantry attests, but the poster I referred to stated the landlord could enter whilst the tenant is there, then insisting on remaining when the tenant is absent! Reading nuance can be difficult for some, but please please try...

    My example was what happens in such cases where the tenant is absent. In law, it matters not a jot if they are absent and their goods are damaged or alleged to be damaged by a third party not authorised to be in their home. Which is what the O/P is asking about. So my reply was yes, you might even be legally entitled to do it, but the tenant is equally entitled to sue you for any damages that are likely attributable whilst the tenant was absent!

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  • jpkeates
    replied
    The quote says that it's unreasonable for a tenant to demand a landlord supervise workmen on a job that lasts several days.
    That has nothing to do with a landlord entering without notice.

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  • BobsToaster
    replied
    Originally posted by Lawcruncher View Post
    You have to be firm with the tenants. If works are required over a few days it is quite unreasonable for the tenants to insist that you supervise them"

    On the contrary, if the works are not an absolute emergency, there is no reason why the tenant can't insist they should be there. Indeed, most reasonable landlords would welcome it! Here's why:

    Landlord took it upon himself to do an unannounced property check and let himself in without notice. Tenant was in but in a state of undress/sexual congress with partner. The tenant refused to pay 3 months rent by way of penalty for loss of privacy and told the landlord to get stuffed for his rent because of that breach of the tenancy. Now, granted that's an aggravating factor not applicable to what you have said, but the landlord then went on to do what you suggest is okay:

    Several months later, the landlord let himself in with workman to check/replace the electricity meter. They did the necessary work and left. The tenant contended that PC parts that had been left on desk had ceased to work due to electro-static discharge, and refused to pay an additional 3 months rent so those parts could be replaced (at the landlords expense).

    The landlord took exception, and took the tenant to court for eviction/rent arrears. Landlord lost, and the court said the tenant had reasonably withheld 3 months worth of rent in damages (albeit that the tenant should have claimed those damages differently in county court) and then agreed with the additional 3 months for PC damages, and then went on to award an additional £1,500 to cover tenants removal costs/court fees etc. as the tenant no longer wanted to live there regardless. Total cost to the landlord was well over £4,000 and that was 20 years ago!

    And all because the landlord felt he had a right to do what he liked to his property. What he failed to realise, and what the judge explained; the landlord gives up all and any the right to access the property for the duration of the rental agreement (save for absolute emergencies), and gains an income. The tenant loses an equal sum of his income but gains the property. If either party breaks that arrangement without consent, penalties are due.

    That landlord learned an expensive lesson! Don't be like him! If the tenant is absent, and has requested that they be there when someone else is in their home, you only have yourself to blame when they allege that their property ceased working whilst you were there and they weren't, and you were there against their explicit wishes![/QUOTE]

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  • Lawcruncher
    replied
    Originally posted by Sheena McQ View Post
    A landlord cannot enter a property without the tenant’s consent. If the tenant refuses to allow access then the landlord has recourse through the proper channels to apply for a right to enter. It’s as simple as that.
    It is important to distinguish between on the one hand a tenant giving consent and on the other the tenant refusing to allow access.

    If a tenant signs an agreement which provides, whether expressly or impliedly, that he will allow the landlord and/or others to enter for a specific purpose then his consent has been given. Provided the purpose is reasonable, the right is exercised reasonably, any required notice is given and the entry is only for a permitted purpose, then the landlord may enter.

    Whilst, so far as I know, no court has ever given any guidance on procedure, a landlord must bear in mind though that anyone exercising a right must not do anything which may lead to a breach of the peace, personal injury or damage to property. If the landlord arrives and finds the tenant has changed the locks or the tenant bars the way, the landlord should withdraw. On the other hand, if the tenant has informed the landlord with a right to enter that he may not enter, there is no reason for the landlord not to enter if he has a key and can let himself in while the tenant is not at home.

    A landlord can apply to the court for an order that he be allowed to exercise a right to enter included in the terms of the tenancy, but he cannot apply for a right because the court has no power to grant such a right.

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  • Sheena McQ
    replied
    A landlord cannot enter a property without the tenant’s consent. If the tenant refuses to allow access then the landlord has recourse through the proper channels to apply for a right to enter. It’s as simple as that.

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  • Lawcruncher
    replied
    Originally posted by shoobydoo View Post
    Any reason why? Would such clauses be unlawful or unreasonable?
    I just thing they would be unworkable.

    You have to be firm with the tenants. If works are required over a few days it is quite unreasonable for the tenants to insist that you supervise them. Within reason tenants need to be treated as owner-occupiers and that extends to having to do things like being around to let workmen in or arranging for someone else to.

    I have never heard of an owner-occupier asking a plumber to provide references before they let him in.

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  • shoobydoo
    replied
    Any reason why? Would such clauses be unlawful or unreasonable? I did take your suggested approach before but generally got "you are the landlord, it is your responsibility to fix it." and "No we do not want anyone else to have a key" or "please provide a company profile and references for the company you are planning to give key to and then we will decide if they can have a key" and of course, "You (landlord) will be liable for any damage or loss to tenant's items if workmen are left unsupervised".

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  • Lawcruncher
    replied
    Originally posted by shoobydoo View Post

    sorry do you mean I should put suitable clauses into contract?
    Oops! Mental aberration. Sometimes my fingers rush ahead of my brain. I meant:

    You do not want to be thinking about such additional clauses.

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  • shoobydoo
    replied
    Originally posted by Lawcruncher View Post
    You want to be thinking about such additional clauses.
    sorry do you mean I should put suitable clauses into contract?

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  • Lawcruncher
    replied
    You want to be thinking about such additional clauses.

    I think you have to put it to the tenant that if he wants work done he has a choice of the workmen being unsupervised or supervising the work himself or getting someone he trusts to. If he was an owner-occupier that would be his choice and there is no good reason why it should be different for a tenant.

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  • shoobydoo
    replied
    Thank you.

    On another note, I live far away from my property and there are parking restrictions during weekdays, plus I work/have school runs etc so difficult for me to attend repair appts during the week. I have service contracts on the boiler, plumbing & electrics but engineers will only come on weekdays and must have someone present. Is it legal to specifiy in a contract that tenants would need to be present for such service contract visits and indeed other repairs? Can I also specify that if landlord is required to attend, such repairs will need to take place on a weekend?

    I ask because my current tenants would not stay home from work and did not want any unsupervised visits. This might be different for future tenants given the "new normal" of working from home, but I just wanted to get it into contract so that there are no misunderstandings later. They could decline the tenancy if this didn't work for them.

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  • Lawcruncher
    replied
    My basic point is that if the terms of the tenancy include an obligation to allow entry consent has already been given. If the landlord turns up and one of the tenants lets him in he does not need any other tenants, whether present or not, to confirm they are happy for him to be there. If one strongly objects the landlord is wise to withdraw to avoid a breach of the peace.

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