blocked drains: who should pay

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  • blocked drains: who should pay

    My agent has sent my tenant a bill to unblock a drain as the plumber said it was caused by them putting food down it.

    This sounds reasonable but I am just a bit concerned because they are good tenants, and they are not well off, and I want to keep good relationships between me, the tenants and the agents.

    So do you think I should:

    a. accept the tenant is wrong and let them pay up
    b. offer to pay some of the cost as a gesture of goodwill?


  • #2
    What does T think about it --- do they accept responsibility?

    How long have they been in the property --- can you be sure it's their food that was the problem or could it have been developing when they moved in?

    Our contract says that if it can be proved that T caused the blockage, then T will pay 100% of costs; if it can be proved that T didn't cause the blockage, then LL will pay 100% of costs; and it neither can be proved, the cost is split 50/50.

    Peter

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    • #3
      Originally posted by pete's properties View Post
      My agent has sent my tenant a bill to unblock a drain as the plumber said it was caused by them putting food down it.

      This sounds reasonable but I am just a bit concerned because they are good tenants, and they are not well off, and I want to keep good relationships between me, the tenants and the agents.

      So do you think I should:

      a. accept the tenant is wrong and let them pay up
      b. offer to pay some of the cost as a gesture of goodwill?

      If it is clear that the tenany has caused the proplem, then the cost will be down to them. You just need to make a commericial decission on who pays the bill and why.

      Comment


      • #4
        Either the landlord or the tenant accepts liability - you can't have a 50/50 solution as it has no basis.
        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


        • #5
          Originally posted by pcwilkins View Post
          What does T think about it --- do they accept responsibility?

          How long have they been in the property --- can you be sure it's their food that was the problem or could it have been developing when they moved in?

          Our contract says that if it can be proved that T caused the blockage, then T will pay 100% of costs; if it can be proved that T didn't cause the blockage, then LL will pay 100% of costs; and it neither can be proved, the cost is split 50/50.

          Peter
          Thanks pc wilkins

          I'll see if I can find out more about it then decide whether to offer something

          Comment


          • #6
            thanks Paul and Colin

            I will chase this up and find out more info

            Comment


            • #7
              I take the view if the drains are blocked in the house but the pipe work isnt faulty it is the tenants fault.

              Last week a tenant phoned up to say the sink wouldnt unblock and they had put loads of off the shelf products down it without it getting better. They were sure there was a fault with the pipe work and the landlords responsability and he must pay. I send one of my maintenance chaps round, he came back not very happy the sink trap was filled with vomit. Nice

              So he charged them £40 for unblocking it.

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              • #8
                Well I've now paid it this time and let the tenant know.

                The agent will tell them this is a one-off and normally they would pay.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I unblocked a tenants drain and it was filled with flash wipes but she denied using them. Her house is on a 4 house drain but she is at the top and it all flows away from her. 2 months later they were blocked again. I went round again and must have pulled hundreds of flash wipes out all stuck together in a horrible slimey mess. Again she denied it and said it must have backed up from further down as next doors was also blocked. When i'd finished i made her come out to look that the drains were perfectly clear and again reinforced flash wipes shld not be put down drain. If it happens again then i'll ask her to pay. My agent said Thames water will unblock a drain for a maximum charge of £69, but i cld find no record of this on their website. Anybody familar with this?

                  Also if you're not cleaning them out yourself then just ask teh drain guy what caused it and therefore liability is established

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by jackboy View Post
                    .....

                    Also if you're not cleaning them out yourself then just ask teh drain guy what caused it and therefore liability is established
                    Yes, our plumber told us it was food down the pipe that the tenant must have been putting down.

                    As the drains are now clear, we can easily prove any further blockage is their fault.

                    But hopefully now they know they are liable, they wouldn't dare block 'em again!

                    Comment

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