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A question for Landlords

(19 Posts)
wwydmoney1 Fri 01-Feb-13 10:50:18

I don't want to say what side I am coming from so have NC!

If your tenant had been without heating/hot water (although there is a small immersion, not enough for a bath but enough for washing up) for a period of about 4 weeks would you offer a rent reduction and if so how much/what percentage?

The heating is currently not working as quotes are still being gathered and the tenant is running plug in blow heaters and oil radiators, but on a prepayment meter.

Thanks

ISeeSmallPeople Fri 01-Feb-13 10:51:39

Is the immersion enough for a shower?

wwydmoney1 Fri 01-Feb-13 10:52:43

There isn't a shower.

MN044 Fri 01-Feb-13 10:53:58

I'm not a ll, but I am a tenant and that's just unacceptable. 4 weeeks without hot water or heat int he weather we've just had. Yes I'd offer a rent reduction, a pretty damn big one. Or tell the tenants that you'll feed their meter. You must be the tenant, surely? What's your ll playing at to not have this sorted in 4 weeks?

ISeeSmallPeople Fri 01-Feb-13 10:58:32

Seriously? Just a bath, not even a mixer tap & shower head?

Then 4 weeks too long with no adequate washing facilities, & I would offer a reduction actually would have sorted it out earlier or moved tenants to a hotel until it was sorted!

There is heating, & there is hot water. Oil radiators & fan heaters ARE a source of heating. They cost a little more to run than gas central heating, but this is partially offset by the savings in the gas bill.

LemonEmmaP Fri 01-Feb-13 10:59:19

I'm a landlord. I can't imagine having left something like this for four weeks, but would certainly consider a reduction in rent. Realistically I probably wouldn't proactively offer the reduction, but would be open to the suggestion from the tenant, particularly if it was a tenant who had been there some time or gave other indications of being a 'good tenant'. Our flats rent at around £600-£675 pcm so I would imagine a reduction of £100 for the month would be reasonable.

ISeeSmallPeople Fri 01-Feb-13 10:59:21

4 weeks is more than enough time to sort out quotes.

If you are the LL, fix it faster.

If you are the tenant, I'd suggest speaking to EHO at the council.

xabiuol Fri 01-Feb-13 11:00:39

I'm a tenant and I would expect a rent reduction!
4 weeks is far too long to wait for a problem to be resolved regarding hot water! Especially when it is minus degrees outside.

The thermostat on my shower packed up on Sunday last week and LL had a plumber in on the Monday morning to assess and a new shower was fitted by the afternoon. What is the reason for the delay in fixing?

wwydmoney1 Fri 01-Feb-13 11:03:37

No mixer tap or shower head.

There is a shower but it hasn't worked since day 1.

Yes I am the tenant. The heating and hot water was run off the rayburn which has been condemned after we all got carbon monoxide poisoning. LL decided he wanted to fit central heating, he got 2 quotes weeks ago and i've heard nothing since. Its rent day today and my agent was trying to get him to offer a rent reduction but he has said no way. I usually put £40 on the meter each week. I'm now putting on £80-90 and the house is freezing (no double glazing and during the snow ice on the inside of the windows!)

I wanted to see if I was expecting too much or if he was being unreasonable.

wwydmoney1 Fri 01-Feb-13 11:05:19

We can have a bath if you count 4 inches of warm water in a freezing bathroom as a bath!

Cantbelieveitsnotbutter Fri 01-Feb-13 11:07:10

All of the above cost a small fortune to run
If your the Ll you want to be doing a massive rent reduction (my house is heated that way and it costs £300 a month) or topping the prepay up.
As for the lack of cleaning facilities by word that makes it uninhabitable!

If your the tenant I hope you get it sorted soon and the ll does the above

MN044 Fri 01-Feb-13 11:12:29

If at all possible, I'd start to seriously think about moving. As far as I know, your ll has effectively rendered your contract invalid by leaving you without sufficient facilities. Speak to shelter or the council, but I don't think I'd want to stay there.

JakeBullet Fri 01-Feb-13 11:18:26

You don't have my exLL do uou? Sounds horribky familiar to a house I lived in......right down to crappy Rayburn.......btoke down every year without fail.

msrisotto Fri 01-Feb-13 11:22:44

This is appalling, gives landlords a bad name.

RenterNomad Sat 02-Feb-13 13:24:20

The housing enforcement office at our council states: "If you are a private tenant and after a reasonable period of time, (normally 28 days), repairs have not been carried out contact us by telephone, fax, e-mail or letter to request assistance with your housing repairs."

Now,
- that 4 weeks/ 28 days has obviously included some pretty damned cold weather for you;
- being on MN, you probably have children, so shouldn't have been obliged to wait 28 days; and
- having suffered this for 4 weeks, you now have quantifiable damages, in the form of extra bills (you say you use a meter, which is a more expensive way to pay anyway, so the property is already pushing towards fuel poverty: have you got receipts/card statements about your usual use, and recent use?).

Contracts should have provision for the LL to pay alternative accommodation for their tenants, if and when a property is uninhabitable. If the premises are then not made "habitable" within one month, the tenancy can be terminated with immediate effect.

Ring the Council housing officer on this asap, as you have already been through the early steps required, and now it's time for your LL to stop pissing about, or face sanctions.

The Central Government information is here. Interestingly, they seem to rely heavily on documentation produced by Shelter, which is not a government organisation, but a housing charity, so clearly has no statutory need to be even handed in the LL-tenant relationship.

nocake Sat 02-Feb-13 16:34:36

As a LL I wouldn't leave our tenants without heating and hot water for a week, let alone 4. Unfortunately there are crappy LLs out there and I'd consider moving at the earliest opportunity.

Also a landlord and this is totally unacceptable. After ready your first post I wondered why he was getting quotes, when you are a LL you just "fix it" end of. You build relationships with trades people and get them out ASAP and pay the bill.
If he is getting quotes for heating then he should be reducing your rent as HE is in inconveniencing you. After all you rented the property with heating, therefore if this is costing you more than you budgeted for due to him faffing then he needs to cover this. He is going to expect you to live with floorboards up too, while the heating is being installed ? I think he needs to be providing alternative housing to be honest.

tomverlaine Mon 04-Feb-13 20:58:38

I am a landlord and I think it's totally unacceptable. The boiler broke in my rental recently and the tenants had the boiler fixed within 4 days. They are just deducting the cost from the rent due - which is easier for everyone. Your landlord must be in breach of his contract- are there no remedies/penalties in the contract?

Timetoask Mon 04-Feb-13 21:04:42

I am a landlord, under those circumstances I think you are absolutely right to request a rent reduction. I would be mortified for my tenants.

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