Garage door key

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    Garage door key

    Hello
    We moved into our rented home 4 months ago. The house is very nice, we love it here. I have constantly asked the letting agent for a key to the garage. Despite this, after 4 months, we haven't got a key and cant lock the garage, so haven't been able to use it to store things like we hoped we would. I have sent several email requests for the keys, each has been responded to with a variety of excuses and promises. We have always paid the rent on time and will continue to do so.

    I was wondering if there was grounds to take the letting agent to the small claims court if they refused to compensate us for the portion of the rent that covers the garage, as i'm 99% sure they'd refuse to and it seems unfair to be paying for a garage we are unable to use.

    Would welcome some opinions

    #2
    We have to assume the tenancy agreement includes exclusive access and use of the garage. Clearly we don't know the details of the lock but, if practicable, change the lock yourself and start using the garage. hopefully it's a nice simple barrel lock, easily found in your local hardware shop for a few quid. If it's a complex one, think again and ignore my advice!! Write to the agent one week before changing the lock in case they suddenly come up with a cunning plan, lie give you the key or admit they've already lost it.
    Forget about four months compensation for non use of the garage. It's the landlord who would have to compensate anyway. The issue should have been bottomed out long before now, either by fighting the case earlier or accepting that it wasn't tenable to bother.
    I may be a housing professional but my views, thoughts, opinions, advice, criticisms or otherwise on this board are mine and are not representative of my company, colleagues, managers. I am here as an independent human being who simply wants to learn new stuff, share ideas and interact with like minded people.

    Comment


      #3
      Sometimes they use this sort...
      http://www.hendersongaragedoorspares...s/prod_13.html

      If you buy a new one, keep the old & put it back when you leave - unless landlord wants to buy yours at whatever price you see fit..
      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


        #4
        Depending on the type of garage door you should be able to buy a new barrel or a new lock to use during your tenancy. A barrel set could cost as little as £10 and a new lock around £50 or so. I had a quote recently to supply and fit a Cardale garage door lock and 3 keys for £50.00.

        You would need to store the original lock or barrel and replace it at the end of your tenancy. Easier, cheaper and quicker than court action, and you get to use and secure the garage.

        pm
        Last edited by property mongrel; 18-09-2014, 11:44 AM. Reason: Artful beat me to it as I was typing. LOL
        Before acting on forum advice, you may wish to consult an expert, someone who has all the relevant facts, and who accepts liability for their advice.

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by sango View Post
          Hello
          I was wondering if there was grounds to take the letting agent to the small claims court if they refused to compensate us for the portion of the rent that covers the garage, as i'm 99% sure they'd refuse to and it seems unfair to be paying for a garage we are unable to use.
          You wouldn't though would you, it's not their house, it's not their rent you are paying, they are just middle men. You'd have to take the landlord to court, which if you're prepared to do after 4 months I'm thankful you're not my tenant.

          After 4 months of asking have you not realised that they haven't got a key? I'm sure they're hoping you'll just go away.
          "I'm afraid I didn't do enough background checks apart from checking her identity on Facebook" - ANON

          What I say is based on my own experience and research - Please don't take as gospel without first checking the gospel yourself.

          Comment


            #6
            What level of compensation pcm are you expecting for 4 months loss of garage?
            Indeed you have not been deprived of its use as it is not locked, just no key to lock it!
            Talk to a rep locksmith, he may be able to supply a replacement key.

            Comment


              #7
              Have you inspected the lock closely? Might even be a lock number on it and potentially you could buy the right key for it.
              "I'm afraid I didn't do enough background checks apart from checking her identity on Facebook" - ANON

              What I say is based on my own experience and research - Please don't take as gospel without first checking the gospel yourself.

              Comment


                #8
                Is it a "standard" up and over garage door with a T-shaped lock? These "overlocks" are widely available and mean you don't need the original key to lock the garage.

                Comment


                  #9
                  The only slightly odd thing here is why the agent/landlord doesn't simply say 'there is no key' and be done with it. Unless (unlikely) the tenancy agreement states a 'lockable' garage I see no reason why there should even be a key. Granted, I keep my own garage locked, as it's full up to the rafters with all sorts of assorted rubbish; but people I know who use their garage for storing a car - it's intended purpose, at the end of the day - just keep the car locked and don't bother.

                  Just fit your own lock as per post #4 and move on.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Ericthelobster View Post
                    Unless (unlikely) the tenancy agreement states a 'lockable' garage I see no reason why there should even be a key.
                    It could invalidate an insurance theft claim from the garage, which is where most people store cycles etc. I've just replaced my 'Cardale' garage door lock with 3 keys for under £20 delivered from www.ashleyonline.co.uk and it was very easy to fit. They deal with many makes of door and lock and has a very useful guide on their website.
                    The advice I give should not be construed as a definitive answer, and is without prejudice or liability. You are advised to consult a specialist solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I bet the tenancy agreement doesn't say that the house has a "lockable" front door either.
                      Or that the windows are transparent (or that the bathroom window isn't).

                      You would reasonably assume external doors are lockable in most towns and cities.
                      Small rural communities may differ I guess.
                      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).

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                        I bet the tenancy agreement doesn't say that the house has a "lockable" front door either.
                        Yebbut my point was that however desirable it may be, a garage doesn't necessarily need to be lockable to fulfil its primary function of storing a (locked) car.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          I don't agree, but there's no value in debating that particular point.
                          8-)

                          I wonder how many garages are actually used to store a car overnight.
                          I've never lived in a house with a garage large enough to drive a car in and get out of the door.
                          They may as well be described as a walk in storage room.
                          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).

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                            I don't agree, but there's no value in debating that particular point.
                            I agree

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Assuming that the tenancy says that you have the right to use the garage. You should expect to have a key for a garage. It has a lock, so you should expect to have a key - I would consider that the norm. The usefulness of a garage that you can't lock is somewhat limited, I would assume that it would invalidate car insurance if you were to keep a car in it. It sounds like they are if ignoring you, write a letter and say they have 2 choices. 1. To provide a key for the garage (if they don't have one, then they need be to change the lock); 2. You are happy to change the lock yourself, but this may incur the cost of a locksmith, which you would expect the to pay. If you don't hear back by a certain reasonable date, then you will go for option 2. I would also list all the dates you have contacted them about this. That might kick them into action, however, it would probably be better for you to change the lock yourself, as there is no guarantee that they will actually pay for a locksmith

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