Responsibility for clearing gutters

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  • flipper
    replied
    Thanks for your reply. I know I hold a lot of the cards, so to speak, as he is being, as you say, a clown. I guess we are easy-going people who aren't interested in making his life harder, as long as he doesn't make ours harder, or play silly sods over deposit etc when we move out.

    It's funny about the deposit, as when there were some changes relating to the deposit protection schemes a couple of years ago, we emailed him highlighting the changes and suggesting that he sorted it out, as situation would be worse for him if he didn't (I only want what is my rightful deposit back, unless he plays silly sods!) and his response was.... could we pay halves into it! Seriously. I won't repeat what I said, luckily not direct to him as he asked my partner whilst I was out.

    Anyway, as I said, I could bore you all forever, but I'll try not to!
    Thanks for all of your responses, and the information you have given me will help immensely if things become awkward when we move!

    Flipper

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  • theartfullodger
    replied
    Originally posted by flipper View Post
    ....
    he never protected the deposit,
    You'll appreciate that works largely in your favour: Any section 21 notice (to evict you..) will be invalid with an unprotected deposit. Further, you can sue him for up to 3x deposit any time up to 6 years after he should have proetcted it.
    has done 1 gas check on time since we moved in, and I could bore you more but I won't!
    What a clown!

    Here's where to report gas certificates not done...
    https://extranet.hse.gov.uk/lfserver/external/lgsr1

    £5 says he's on the fiddle with his company registered at your home, your property:

    You can either I guess
    - live with it...
    - Inform authorities (e.g. HMRC for possible fraud..Income tax, VAT)
    http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/reportingfraud/
    - Bin all the mail:

    Leave a comment:


  • flipper
    replied
    HI

    thank you for you replies... the post is for a registered business, for which he has a website that shows our address as his business address. I did a lot of searches when we first moved in to try to establish the legalities of this, and it was not clear. As we have now set a precedent for many years of accepting this arrangement, I can cope. But yes, I do wonder about tax breaks and all that!

    As for the hedges - no inventory was ever done, no photo's, nothing. so again we have met the costs from our own sense of responsibility, and the grey area that governs this topic.

    Given the grey area of the guttering, I think I'm going to just stump up and get it sorted, less hassle!

    Honestly, It's a good job we are nice, easy going tenants - he never protected the deposit, has done 1 gas check on time since we moved in, and I could bore you more but I won't!

    once again many thanks for the responses, much appreciated.

    and p.s please ignore the strange wanadooo thing at the start of my previous post! Must have leaned on the keyboard and not noticed.

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  • elniinio
    replied
    Unless the tenancy agreement states otherwise, the landlord only has obligations to repair the structure and exterior (including drains, gutters and external pipes).

    Repair is not maintain. The landlord has no obligation to maintain and, I would go further, has no right of access to maintain. Imagine a situation where a tenant awakes and finds a complete stranger on a ladder outside her bedroom window. He says the landlord sent him to inspect her gutters to see if they needed clearing. Or a landlord who turns up every Sunday morning during the summer to mow the lawn, because it needs maintaining. The tenant would claim breach of quiet enjoyment and correctly so. The landlord does not have the right to do these things.

    The tenant does have an obligation to behave in a tenant-like manner, and a number of examples are given for this. These include clearing the sink when blocked and cleaning the chimney when necessary. The tenant also has an obligation not to damage the house, willfully or negligently, and an obligation to repair it if he does. I see no reason why the gutter is excluded from this, just because it happens to be outside the house or might be a particularly difficult job for the average tenant.

    Just because a landlord or a tenant has an obligation, it doesn't mean they have to undertake it personally. I (as a tenant) am obliged to clean some difficult to reach windows. I don't do it myself, I pay someone else to. I (as a landlord) was recently obliged to repair (actually replace) a cracked flag stone. I didn't do it myself, I paid someone to do that, too.

    All that being said, the really important question is what is the consequence for the tenant who does not maintain? If non-maintenance leads to damage (negligence) which must be repaired, then he is responsible for that. The landlord must carry out the repair but he can seek the costs from the responsible party, the tenant. If the non-maintenance does not lead to damage then it is only a question at the end of the tenancy, whether the property is returned in the same condition as it was at the start, according to the inventory. If the inventory is silent on the condition of the gutter, I think the tenant has not much to worry about. The only other consequence I can think of is if the landlord is unhappy with the state of the maintenance during the tenancy then he may choose to end the tenancy through whatever means are available to him.

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  • theartfullodger
    replied
    Put post back in post-box: "Not at this address". £5 says landlord is on the fiddle somewhere/somehow. Is "the business" named e.g. "Imperial Properties Ltd" or "Mr A B Landlord" or "Dodgy properties agency"??

    Don't think with gutters there is a hard & fast rule that always applies.

    With the 8ft hedges do the inventory & photos show & list the hedges & their height?? Can't see how LL can enforce you cutting them, other than by evicting for no reason at all using S21.

    Leave a comment:


  • Wannadonnadoodah
    replied
    I'm not saying I'd make my tenants do it or that I'd do it as a tenant either, similar to Ram.

    Still very strange to use a rental property as an address for anything. Myself and the majority of landlords I'd imagine have zero items of post going to their rental properties.

    Leave a comment:


  • flipper
    replied
    Wannadonnadoodah,

    Thanks very much. We do behave in this manner, and paid to have a toilet unblocked when we hadn't been in the property long, as we didn't feel we could prove it wasn't us that blocked it in the first place. Just one example really, I consider us good tenants.
    as for the post, his business is registered to this address, so we get his business related post, save it in a bag and then hand it over when he knocks for it.

    thanks

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  • ram
    replied
    When I rent a house, I stipulate that I will not clean gutters.
    I also state the fair wear and tear on tap washers is the landlords duty to replace them.

    They have the oportunity to reject my aplication to rent, but they don't.

    I find that tap washers have never been replaced and gutters have never been cleaned so why should I pay for the refusal by the owners and previous tenants to look after those things, and make me pay for the lack of maintenace by the previous owners and tenants.

    They can issue me with a section 21 if they wish, which will of course cost them money in extra fees, maybe £ 600 loss of rent while they find another tenant, or they can clean the cutters and replace the tap washers for one 10th the cost of the S21 accrued charges.

    I stand my ground, and have not been asked to leave when above is pointed out to the landlord.

    Leave a comment:


  • mariner
    replied
    The LL is the property owner not the home-owner. You wouldn't expect LL to vacuum your carpets each week.
    Gutters only need cleaning poss once per year and may only cost you £50 pa for a helpful window cleaner or odd job man with a ladder to do all the gutters.
    Sounds like yours are overdue, risking overflow and penetrating damp on internal walls.

    Leave a comment:


  • Wannadonnadoodah
    replied
    It means that tenants should behave in a tenant like manner, i.e doing jobs to the home that live in as a homeowner would, such as cleaning windows etc, tenants don't live in a hotel. If gardens need gardening, or windows need cleaning, it's down to who lives there.

    As to the LL receiving post, that's interesting as they shouldn't have any post going to their rental property. If it's mortgage related post, then it's very dodgy.

    Leave a comment:


  • flipper
    replied
    HI

    I'm a little confused as to what you mean in your first sentence that Tenants should generally expect the same. Are you saying T's should clear guttering, or LL? As LL is still the homeowner
    I'm very interested in this thread, as my gutterings are not in great state, I can see moss etc in them, so they will need clearing. I'm a tenant. However, they have never been cleared prior to us moving in, and we have been in the property for 5 years now.
    We already pay out a fair bit of money to get the 8 foot hedges trimmed, and the LL barely needs to do anything for the property as we maintain it (as we should of course) to a good standard, and we only ever see him when he comes to collect his post. is it fair to expect us as T's to pick up the entire bill? shouldn't LL at least pay half?

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  • Direct
    replied
    Homeowners have to clear leaves out of their own gutters. Tenants should generally expect the same in their home. To avoid climbing a ladder, one can ask a window cleaner or other tradesman to do it. If the gutter gets old and breaks, that is a different matter and generally the landlord would be responsible for repairing it. It would depend to some degree on the length of the lease as well as the terms of the tenancy but if there is an understanding at the beginning of the tenancy then that should prevail.

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  • Tolska10
    replied
    If the gutter only needs cleanings is the T's responsability. Since thetenancy states they must do minor repairs, (check this)
    If however not cleaning the gutter is causing/will cause damage for example if the gutter is dipping due to the weight of moss then I think this is the LL who must have this cleaned/fixed.

    It does also state in a tenancy LL must repair external problems, Gutter is external but cleaning it is not repairing, so I guess it's down to the tenant.

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  • thesaint
    replied
    Originally posted by Grrr View Post
    I as landlord would expect (want) to take responsibility for it
    No one is taking that away from you.

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  • Grrr
    replied
    As a landlord I don't have to get the boiler serviced, but I do as it is likely to prolong the life of the boiler but this is something that is of little interest to a tenant.

    Most tenants are unlikely to notice if the gutter needs clearing and it is of little interest to them either way. It is however of interest to the landlord as long term structural damage can result from overflowing gutters. Possibly something you could claim from a deposit, but difficult to prove or quantify, so most likely to fail an appeal.

    Where a) the job is dangerous and b) it's not necessarily something that needs to happen every tenancy and c) the structural maintenance of the building depends on it, I as landlord would expect (want) to take responsibility for it

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