Tenant improvements

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    Tenant improvements

    Hi all, new to the site, and to being a landlord.
    The property I'm renting out is a bit unusual, you go in on the middle floor, and access the garden by going through the house.
    The tenants just moved in and want to have an external staircase from the front of the property down to the garden like some of the neighbours have. In principal I like the idea, and would like to keep my tenants happy, but I'm not sure about how to go about it. Clearly it needs to be safe, I don't want to be liable if it collapses, and obviously I want it done to a good standard as otherwise it'd be detrimental to my property. I don't particularly want to shell out for it as there's nothing wrong and I've just spent a fortune getting it up to spec.

    Thanks in advance
    Jon

    #2
    Anything like this, I ask a tradesman for a price for labour and a price for materials. Then I suggest tenant pay the labour, and I pay the materials.

    Thus job is done professionally, at a reasonable cost, and tenant has no justification for unscrewing anything when they leave.

    Comment


      #3
      Why didn't you think to do this alteration before letting the property?

      Surely tenants saw the premises before accepting it and moving in?

      If you do decide to get the work done ask Freeholder for consent, and neighbours for recommends of suitable builders.



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

      Comment


        #4
        Well it's not a vital piece of work. I lived there for 5 years and always thought of it as something I could do but wasn't particularly fussed.
        Consent from the tenant won't be an issue, he wants to do it, himself as he's a builder. I'm even fairly happy for him to do the work provided I get consulted throughout and am given plans etc. My reservations are a - costings, who pays for it including if they move out, b- liability if something goes wrong of collapses on the tenant in a years time, c - if it's not a good enough job and needs removing when they move out
        They did see it, and I don't think it'd be an issue if I said no, but I think they'll be long term tenants so I'd like to be supportive.
        Thanks

        Comment


          #5
          NEVER, ever let a tenant carry out any work at your property.
          Any improvements they make are yours to keep. ( should you ever allow modifications )
          Never ask them to pay.

          You will find that they may ask for a rent reduction, or take the stairs away with them when they leave, or complain that they did all that work and expect freebies later on.

          Something such as a fire escape, which it is also, MUST be done by a qualified tradesman, and not by you or your tenant.
          Any additional structures outside the building cannot be put there without freeholder consent.

          You will have to have your lease updated to show the stairway is your responsibility to maintain, and not the freeholder. The other lessees have to be changed to also show the stairway is not to be maintained by the freeholder through the service charges.
          I have lived in flats, 2 and 3 story, and you walk down the stairs and into the garden. That's normal.

          Do you have 5 to £ 9000 for a concrete base, and framework ?

          The answer should be no,
          and if one was to be put there, you would pay, not the tenant, is not getting one, and the tenant cannot make any additions to the property ( it will be in the A.S.T. as well.)

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Jonny2509 View Post
            Well it's not a vital piece of work. I lived there for 5 years and always thought of it as something I could do but wasn't particularly fussed.
            Consent from the tenant won't be an issue, he wants to do it, himself as he's a builder. I'm even fairly happy for him to do the work provided I get consulted throughout and am given plans etc. My reservations are a - costings, who pays for it including if they move out, b- liability if something goes wrong of collapses on the tenant in a years time, c - if it's not a good enough job and needs removing when they move out
            They did see it, and I don't think it'd be an issue if I said no, but I think they'll be long term tenants so I'd like to be supportive.
            Thanks
            Then I'd tell him it won't be happening.

            Comment


              #7
              Some of the replies have mentioned the freeholder, but I see nothing to indicate that the property is leasehold.

              Please advise if you own the property leasehold or freehold.

              Comment


                #8
                Yeah it's mine, no leasehold

                Comment


                  #9
                  I know there are implications to consider, such as mentioned by Ram and others, but it would be a shame not to build that staircase. What you have is a win-win situation: tenants want staircase and its addition will improve your house. And costs will be split by both parties.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    I agree with kelbol.

                    Make your own investigations of him as a tradesman in the same were you would if you were employing him.

                    Obtain references of previous work etc and if he has a good reputation then go for it.

                    If it's going to be his home long term he's likely to do a good job.

                    I would advise that you previously had no intention of undertaking such work but if he's willing to put in the labour at his own cost then you will pay for materials, providing a contract is drawn up that it belongs to you and will remain if/when tenant departs

                    Comment


                      #11
                      If you go ahead, then don't forget planning permission, updating (addendum to?) inventory, and taking pictures of finished item.

                      If I were the tenant, I would want some assurance that recompense would be available if S21 were to be used within a certain time after completion (which prompts me to advise that the contract to fit it should have agreed timescales for completion, e.g 3 months from start of work or 3 months from provision of materials).

                      One other thought, that others here may be able to advise on: given that the plan is that the tenant provides labour for free, does the agreement need to be signed as a deed?

                      Comment


                        #12
                        A promise to do work is consideration - so no need for a deed.
                        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


                          #13
                          Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                          A promise to do work is consideration - so no need for a deed.
                          I was thinking from the other side: does the tenant get anything that would make it an equitable contract?

                          Comment


                            #14
                            It would be a lovely world where contracts had to be equitable!

                            Sadly, they don't - the limit is more like not being under duress or containing unfair terms if it's a consumer contract.
                            Which is more at the "not actually abusive" end of the "equitable" scale.
                            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

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