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Renting and bathroom repairs

(19 Posts)
NoMoreMrRight Thu 17-Mar-16 15:25:51

I privately rent my flat; the landlord and owner of the building is the same company and they manage the whole building of flats as well as the repairs etc. I have been here for about three years.

The other day the toilet lid in the master bathroom became loose and a guy from the repairs team came to fix it. He was here for about 10 mins. during which he looked at it quickly, assessed that the reason why it was loose was that one of the rubber thinghies had come off (we couldn't find it) and he said he would just replace it with a completely new seat. He disappeared and returned five mins later with a brand new seat which he installed. He said his goodbyes and left.

Now out of the blue, a week later, I receive an email from the renting company saying that they are charging me £100 for the toilet seatconfused; roughly £80 for the seat and £20 for labour. At no point I was informed that there was a charge for the toilet seat (or the labour) otherwise I would have chosen to source the small rubber part and fix it myself! Especially as the seat itself was secure, it was only the lid that had become loose.

I would just like to know where I stand from a legal standpoint please. They are saying the toilet seat was replaced and it being tenant's liability I have no option but to pay for it. Thank you

dementedpixie Thu 17-Mar-16 20:03:06

Ffs was it gold plated?? I wouldn't pay that for a toilet seat. Don't know where you stand with it though. I wouldn't have called for a repair for the toilet seat though and would have sorted it out myself

NoMoreMrRight Thu 17-Mar-16 21:37:13

I tried to do it myself but couldn't and they have come in the past to fix stuff with no issues so I called them. It's a soft close type one. ...I know, it's outrageous sad

MsJamieFraser Fri 18-Mar-16 06:40:56

Have you got your tenancy agreement, I work in this area and toilet seats are not included as "repairs", its down to the tenant to repair this?

bollocksontheinternet Fri 18-Mar-16 06:42:07

Good grief a toilet seat costs about £40 for a posh one.

SavoyCabbage Fri 18-Mar-16 06:57:00

We rented out our house through an agent and at the end of the tenancy the agent deducted a toilet seat and the cost of someone to fit it from their deposit.

SavoyCabbage Fri 18-Mar-16 06:57:32

It wasn't £100 though! I think it was £20.

wowfudge Fri 18-Mar-16 07:19:27

In your shoes I would dispute the charge for the toilet seat - outrageous. In fact I'd be tempted to take it to their office and just pay the labour charge. That is a huge piss take, no pun intended.

NoMoreMrRight Fri 18-Mar-16 07:20:27

Hmm...so it looks like I might have to pay for it after allsad. Would it be included under the House Contents insurance as it technically broke? I guess I could perhaps source the toilet seat myself online much cheaper and tell them that's what I'm happy to pay? Do they have the right to charge for labour costs if they're part of the service they offer as a landlord company?

Thank you all

Lamu Fri 18-Mar-16 07:53:49

I wouldn't pay it op. Challenge them on it. At the very least they should have informed you of the cost before the work was done. In which case you could have fixed the issue yourself.

You'd only be liable if it was delibarate damage and from what you've said here, I would say it was wear and tear which is the responsibility of the landlord. I'm a landlord btw.

NoMoreMrRight Fri 18-Mar-16 08:22:48

Thank you Lamu. There's two bathrooms in the flat and this one has never had the toilet seat changed/replaced; I've been here for three years.

Won't they be able to withhold that amount from my deposit when I leave though our delay me getting it through a lengthy dispute? This is a large letting/owner company with their own marketing, legal etc teams. ..

Lamu Fri 18-Mar-16 09:08:29

They're trying it on.

Tenants should not be liable for reasonable wear and tear on a rental property. And you could argue that a toilet seat that's been there for three years possibly longer has had more than a fair amount of use.

Your deposit should be held by a tenant deposit protection scheme. This should give you better protection should they try and withhold some of your deposit. I don't have any actual idea of how the appeal process in a case like this works. As I've never had to use it touch wood. Just make sure you have a paper email trail of the discussions you've had about it.

NoMoreMrRight Fri 18-Mar-16 10:00:25

Thank you Lamu, I'll email them and hopefully they won't put up a fight (unlikelysad).

Lamu Fri 18-Mar-16 11:02:21

If you can't be bothered with the hassle then just write it off and pay up. But you'll know for next time, it's easier to deal with minor issues yourself.

I personally wouldn't out of principle but then I'm as stubborn as a donkey. Hope you get it sorted.

NoMoreMrRight Fri 18-Mar-16 11:25:43

Same here, stubborn as a donkey (and, I rather spend the £100 on DC not on a blimming toilet seat! angry). Thank you again for your help.

Lighteningirll Mon 21-Mar-16 07:41:11

A soft close seat (£40 )a plumber plus Mark up for admin time would be reasonable at £60 to £80 I would offer them £60 as good will they will possibly accept that rather than upset a good tenant. Out of interest do you usually call them out for this sort of wear and tear? We have a tenant who calls us for everything even her washing machine that's nothing to do with us we do it all but it's getting to the point we will may have to charge her just to stop it. My dh spent half hour on the phone to her gas company sorting out her dd as she complained about her gas bill to us and demanded a new boiler (hers is eighteen months old). Last week she called us Sunday afternoon raging that the cooker had stopped working and she'd had to throw her Sunday roast away. Turns out the battery in the ignition needed changing.

Lamu Mon 21-Mar-16 11:07:44

Lightenin op is well within her right to report broken items and expect them to be fixed. She doesn't own the property and therefore shouldn't have to pay out for a broken toilet seat. Similarly you wouldn't charge your tenant for roof repairs or new windows etc.

More fool you for being dragged into your tenants affairs. You shouldn't be being called out to sort out a washing machine which isn't your property. Or sorting out gas bills! Her boiler is your boiler, in your property and if it's inefficient you do have a moral/legal obligation to see to it.

Lighteningirll Tue 22-Mar-16 07:36:21

My dh would help out anyone in distress our tenant is unexpectedly single with young dc and hopeless he would help her out whether or not she was our tenant. Obviously an inefficient or broken boiler is our problem a new boiler the tenant doesn't realise she has to set thermostats or use timers on shouldn't. Be.

Lamu Tue 22-Mar-16 07:48:56

See, I see it as a business transaction and keep it as such. I'm happy to help my tenants where I can, but I would not get that involved.

I don't want phone calls or emails from multiple tenants needing xyz. I just don't have the time to be running around after them. confused

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