Garden Pests - Landlord or Tenant Responsibility?

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    Garden Pests - Landlord or Tenant Responsibility?

    • Swarm of bees suddenly settles on bush in garden
    • Leatherjacket larvae are destroying the lawn
    • Moles are digging up the lawn


    .......

    Who is responsible? My personal opinion is, as these are not caused by the landlord they are a tenant responsibility in acting in a 'tenant-like manner' - they are something that can occur naturally during the course of being an occupier of a property which nobody could predict.

    Your thoughts please

    P.S. Make an assumption that none of these problems were evident at the start of the tenancy and they are not caused by disrepair.

    #2
    What does tenancy say about garden?

    What do inventory & signed agreed photos show about garden condition at start of tenancy?

    Tenant's responsibility however, enforcement could be tricky.



    If this is a whiny complaining tenant I'd give notice..

    Cheers!
    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


      #3
      The tenant has not caused this damage.

      You could say the same about pigions in the roof space, then the bugs
      they bring in go down the cavity walls into the house.
      Not the tenants doing.
      Costs £ 1000 to remove all soiled insulation and bug treatent, and
      scaffolding to repair hole in eves where the pigions got in.

      Not the tenants problem.

      Who owns the bushes and garden. The landlord.
      If things drop in that is out of control of the tenants, you cant expect
      the tenant to repair that which was not his doing.

      Tenants keep the place tidy ( meaning cutting and trimming )
      It does not extend to repair and maintenance of property that does
      not belong to them.

      If you want them to REPAIR AND REPLACE items in the garden, then
      you need a contract that states they will repair, and replace items
      damaged by
      frost, wind rain, bees, Leatherjacket larvae, moles etc.

      Your A.S.T. will not be a full repair and maintenance package.

      Therfore, in the same way as frost may crack a pipe, which is
      not the tenants remit to repair, as it was not him that froze the pipe,

      then it is not the tenants remit to replace bushes and lawn,
      as it was not him that destroyed the bushes and lawn.

      Your property.

      R.a.M.

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by theartfullodger View Post
        What does tenancy say about garden?

        Cheers!
        Many thanks for the response. It was mean't as a general question as no Tenancy Agreement would ever list everything that could land in the garden. Since there are no garden laws or laws on pests (apart from perhaps rats and mice) what would be considered fair and reasonable?

        Comment


          #5
          I take the point cymro but (hopefully) there will have been a couple of photos & general description of outside (eg "garden tidy, grass trimmed and beds weeded") other wise that's a big hostage to fortune..

          I still think it is T's problem but Shelter appear to have other advice see...
          http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_ad...sts_and_vermin
          What if it is nobody’s fault?

          If nobody has caused the infestation, then it is likely to be your landlord’s responsibility to get rid of any pests and vermin.
          - I think they are wrong ...
          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


            #6
            R.a.M. I can understand that where something falls under the HHSRS or Section 11 repairing obligations then it clearly is a LL issue but I am not sure that everything else should fall to the LL?

            In my mind, care of the garden includes dealing with pests?

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by theartfullodger View Post
              I still think it is T's problem but Shelter appear to have other advice see...
              http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_ad...sts_and_vermin

              - I think they are wrong ...
              I have oodles of respect for Shelter but I don't agree with everything they say and this article is not well written. For example there is no legal definition of 'vermin' and whoever wrote this article have obviously not read the Prevention from Damage by Pests act 1949 so I cannot take this bit of advice seriously.

              Comment


                #8
                Likewise: We may all need them one day.... (hope not!!)

                What's that you say they never help landlords?? Well, yes but if the individual is having their own home (rented or mortgaged) threatened with possession they are arguable as you say Cymro amongst the best advice mobs going...

                Re. laws etc there must be something that covers bees as a danger to neighbours and also this general area is within the purlieus of Environmental Protection Act 1990, Public Health Act 1936 & Prevention of Damage by Pests Act 1949 I think...
                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


                  #9
                  Originally posted by cymro123 View Post
                  R.a.M. I can understand that where something falls under the
                  HHSRS or Section 11 repairing obligations then it clearly is a LL issue
                  In my mind, care of the garden includes dealing with pests?
                  I agree that small pests in the home are the responsibility of the tenant.
                  Such as spiders, the odd beetle that files in, and in my case,
                  some wood lice.
                  But I am not going to dismantle the kitchen cupboards and
                  skirting boards to find out where they are coming in from.
                  Nor do I want to overspend if there IS a way for these woodlice
                  to get in.

                  It is also costing me hundreds of pounds in the garden, as the
                  previous owners did not do what you say residents should do.
                  They did not Eradicate pests in the garden before I rented the
                  place. And these were the Owners of the property before they
                  rented out. ! !
                  So their FAILURE to ensure THEY got rid of pests, now falls on me.

                  However, I WANT to keep the garden free from pests, but I am
                  entitled to complain to the landlord that they made no effort to
                  eradicate the pests before I moved in, nor to ensure the kitchen
                  was free from small access cracks.

                  SOME small effort on the part of the tenant to spend £ 6 on bug
                  killer would be expected, but your suggestion that they have to
                  spend on eradicators to remove bees / wasps nests, bring in
                  Mole eradicators and returf your lawn is a bit much !

                  And if you lived in America, and termites destroyed your timber
                  framed house, do you expect the tenants to be responsible,
                  because they did not spot them ( you never see them, anyway )

                  So, Landlords expect tenants to spend a nominal amount in
                  the garden to help keep the little bugs away.
                  But if something in excess of two £ 6 sprays a year, then it
                  should be the landlord who meets the additional costs to keep
                  THEIR property safe.

                  There has to be a line drawn somewhere, and that is difficult to judge, therefore, I suggest if costs more than £ 15 to eradicate
                  bugs etc, per year, then the landlord pay the rest.

                  If you don't agree with that figure, then sugggest one,
                  £20 ? £ 500 ? £ 5000 ?

                  R.a.M.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by ram View Post
                    The tenant has not caused this damage.

                    You could say the same about pigions in the roof space, then the bugs
                    they bring in go down the cavity walls into the house.
                    Not the tenants doing.
                    Costs £ 1000 to remove all soiled insulation and bug treatent, and
                    scaffolding to repair hole in eves where the pigions got in.

                    Not the tenants problem.
                    The garden infestations are not remotely comparable to an infestation caused by disrepair - i.e. 'holes...where the pigeons got in'.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by cymro123 View Post
                      • Swarm of bees suddenly settles on bush in garden
                      • Leatherjacket larvae are destroying the lawn
                      • Moles are digging up the lawn


                      .......

                      Who is responsible? My personal opinion is, as these are not caused by the landlord they are a tenant responsibility in acting in a 'tenant-like manner' - they are something that can occur naturally during the course of being an occupier of a property which nobody could predict.

                      Your thoughts please

                      P.S. Make an assumption that none of these problems were evident at the start of the tenancy and they are not caused by disrepair.
                      See http://blog.painsmith.co.uk/2010/09/...rds-liability/

                      Comment


                        #12
                        R.a.M No LL is entitled to betterment so this is not what I am suggesting BUT the LL is entitled to have the garden returned in the same condition as at the commencement of the tenancy (fair wear and tear excepted) so I don't think the LL deserves to inherit the mole hills all over the lawn or the grass completely killed by leatherjacket larvae because the T could not be bothered to deal with it.

                        If the T did not want to have the responsibility of having a garden which they would have to care for and return in the same condition they really should have taken a property on the top floor of a block of flats that bans window boxes.

                        Price? How long is a piece of string? I believe Lords cricket ground had problems with leatherjacket larvae years ago and I hate to think how much that cost to put right - more than £6

                        Comment

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