Must landlord disclose (to tenant) previous burglaries?

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    Must landlord disclose (to tenant) previous burglaries?

    We're marketing a flat on behalf of an ex-pat landlord. It's in an ex-local block in Dollis Hill that I've recently learned is notorious for break ins. We've found a new tenant. They're about to move in next week.
    In the last 10 days the current tenant has been broken into twice (probably by the same burglars). We now have a duty of care to inform the new tenant don't we? They will probably pull out. If it comes back on the market do we have to inform all interested parties of its history? Surely that means it will never get let....cripes!

    What would you do???

    Thanks for your opinion...

    #2
    I cannot see that you have a duty of care to warn the incoming tenant about something which happened to the outgoing tenant.

    Its a bit different when selling a house where you have to declare neighbour disputes.

    Taking it to the ridiculous - are you obliged to warn your tenant that it hurts if he slams the door on his fingers? Of course not!!!!!!

    Comment


      #3
      Your duty of care is to make sure that the flat is made safe, so that you reduce the likelyhood of another break-in. See HHSRS.

      This may require you to install BS standard locks, window locks, and an alarm, a stronger front door, etc

      Do a risk assessment.
      All posts in good faith, but do not rely on them

      * * * * * ** * * * * * * * * * * * *

      You can search the forums here:

      Comment


        #4
        .... or allow them to have a fierce looking dog.

        or even a not too friendly 'house bunny'

        Comment


          #5
          Do you know you are much more likley to be broken into for a second time soon after you have experienced the first break in. This is because the theifs know that you are likley to replace the stolen property with brand new stuff, hence... the repeat break in. Once you have been a victim of crime, your something around TWICE as likley to be a victim again in that year. I will try and put my hand on the statistics.

          My point is..... this could just be a flash in the pan? and the new tenants will have no trouble?

          Comment


            #6
            Thanks. God there are some real scumbags around aren't there?

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Planner View Post
              Do you know you are much more likley to be broken into for a second time soon after you have experienced the first break in. This is because the theifs know that you are likley to replace the stolen property with brand new stuff, hence... the repeat break in.
              Indeed; except the lag time is much longer than this because the toe-rags wait until the insurance co has paid up before returning. In this case I'd say it's morre likely that they returned to collect stuff they couldn't manage last time for whatever reason.

              And by that reckoning, the property is still due for a post-insurance visit...

              In terms of duty of care... how did they gain entrance on both occasions? Same route? You should certainly make sure that the entry routes are prevented or blocked in some way.

              Comment


                #8
                If the tenants ask if you have been burgled be honest if not they will find out from neighbours and feel you are not to be trusted.

                A good burglar alarm, which is wire free can be bought cheaply, and installed within minutes in comparison to the problems you will have, if the low life’s comes back.

                Honesty best policy!

                Comment


                  #9
                  If you are an agent, then you are legally obliged to act in the best interests of your principal, who is the landlord. Acting in his best interests may well be that you get his approval to improve the security in the property so that it becomes more marketable, so in that way you are as a consequence also acting in the interests of future tenants.

                  As suggested, do check how the intruders gained access, and secure those access points. It may be as simple as getting additional locks fitted to the front door, or getting security catches fitted to windows. This is not an expensive job, particularly if compared to the loss of rent, so your client should be fairly easily persuaded if you phrase it well.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    My parents in law were burgled -they took all portable things like TV/microwave, video player etc. - even the bloody wall clock - so we reckon a van was used - they weren't insured.

                    We helped them replace stuff and I recall saying to them "The thieves will be back again to collect the stuff you will have replaced - they now know how to get in, the layout of the house, and what you are likely to have for them to take"

                    Over the next 2 months, I pestered them to get insurance - it would have costed £8 a month back then! They resisted until one day they walked into their building society to draw some money out - I went in behind them and asked one of the staff to give them an insurance quotation, adding in a loud voice "They have not got any house insurance"

                    Father in law goes "FFS lets take some insurance out and get David off our backs" So they did. They had only paid two months premiums when the house was forcibly entered and over £2k worth of stuff taken plus damage to the window. Insurance paid out.

                    I believe in the maxim that if you are broken into successfully, it is 90% likely to be attempted again within 6 months - proof as above!!!!!

                    Comment

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