How to make carpeted stairs safe?

(16 Posts)
ovumahead Mon 11-May-15 09:09:48

Hello! We've had 4 people slip and fall down our staircase at home, including me yesterday and I'm 22 weeks pregnant. Obviously not something I want to repeat! Have really hurt my back and hip as well.

Just wondering if anyone knows how to make indoor carpeted stairs safer? We rent our house so can't do anything major... And our landlord us unlikely to do anything remotely helpful. Well if he did he'd make sure it was the worst job possible which seems to be his preferred method!

All I've found online is some garish black or bright yellow tape... Need better ideas!

specialsubject Mon 11-May-15 10:01:36

this almost certainly means that your carpet is worn out and needs replacing. Write (that is write by recorded delivery, not email, not phone, and keep a copy) to the landlord stating that it is now getting slippery and needs replacement.

(if by any chance the carpet is less than three years old then this doesn't apply, but I doubt it)

rental properties need to be kept in a reasonable state of repair. If he does nothing get on to the council to raise a complaint - it doesn't just apply to council properties.

Seeline Mon 11-May-15 10:03:03

Agree - is the carpet worn or loose?
we've always had carpeted stairs and it's never been a problem.

CheeseBadger Mon 11-May-15 12:00:24

Sounds like the noses might be missing from some of the treads. If so, your landlord needs to repair it urgently. Are the fronts of the steps straight, or does it feel as though some of them have "eroded" near the middle?

ovumahead Mon 11-May-15 16:03:18

The carpet is really really old and slippery. Not quite threadbare but getting there. I very much doubt the landlord will fix it! I've started with a firm email and will progress to letter writing if necessary. Surely a pregnant woman falling down the stairs in your property would be enough to scare you into action?!

ovumahead Mon 11-May-15 16:04:03

No noses on the stairs when I feel them. Plus they're not very deep - made for people with mini feet I think!

ouryve Mon 11-May-15 16:07:38

We had that problem with the carpet on our stairs when we moved in. It was very deep pile and had worn so it was flat and slippery. We replaced it with a shorter pile carpet with all new underlay.

ouryve Mon 11-May-15 16:09:29

And yes, our stairs are steep too. Great for kids with short legs, crap as an adult.

specialsubject Mon 11-May-15 16:39:27

the construction of the stairs is as you agreed to take the property. The worn out carpet is a maintenance issue and does need to be fixed. The landlord doesn't know until you tell him, but you are doing that so that ends that excuse.

don't belabour (ahem...) the pregnancy - anyone falling on the stairs due to poor maintenance is an issue.

ovumahead Mon 11-May-15 16:50:59

Yes, true! It's just that our landlord and the letting agents are both ridiculously inefficient - we have 3 completely broken fence panels in the garden and I have been asking for them to be fixed for over a YEAR. Bloody ridiculous! So I will maximise the pregnancy as it may jolt them into action. I am doubtful though!

specialsubject Mon 11-May-15 16:55:04

it is just possible that the letting agents are flicking hair rather than doing any work, and the landlord knows nothing of the problem. But it sounds as if you are contacting the landlord directly and still being ignored, for which there is no excuse.

BTW gas safe cert? Deposit protected?

ovumahead Mon 11-May-15 19:31:45

Yes gas safety certificate and deposit all protected. The things they have to do, they do. I don't contact the landlord directly but I've met him and he's a tight arse, as is confirmed by his complete inability to fix anything on the house at all. The letting agents also seem to help him with this approach. It's very annoying as we pay over £1000 pm for a badly maintained property.

specialsubject Mon 11-May-15 20:32:28

hmm. Well, at least the legal stuff is being done. (BTW there has to be an EPC too although they are useless)

what else is wrong?

you don't know the landlord's financial situation but that's not your problem. A suggestion in the interests of getting the job done; how about getting a couple of quotes? Then you can tell the landlord what it will cost (it isn't a huge amount) and suggest that if it is easier, you pay for it and the sum concerned is knocked off that month's rent, so he actually pays for it. But DO get that in writing and adjust your standing order!

of course he should do it, and if the place really is tatty my usual advice of 'leave' applies; but if you don't want to do that then softly softly may be better.

alternatively you could threaten him with contacting the council to raise a complaint; the new law on revenge evictions means that (when it comes in) you can't be evicted while a complaint is in force. But I very much doubt that will get the job done.

I detest landlords like this as it only fuels the hate.

ovumahead Mon 11-May-15 21:04:28

The landlord wears cords, lives in the country and drives a landrover. He owns land, and other properties locally which he rents and apparently are in a terrible state. I don't think he's poor... I think he's an arse hole. And a tight one, too.

We've had plenty of problems with the property since living here including problems with damp which he did precisely nothing about for nearly a year (this seems to be his time frame for taking some kind of action). We did manage to get him to sort the kitchen ceiling out which had been papered and all the paper was peeling off.

He's done nothing to maintain the property properly - we know the previous tenants (kind of) and they paid for most of the bottom floor of the house to be recarpeted and did loads of other work to it at their own expense.

This is the crap that us renters have to put up with! It's infuriating, not least because we could clearly afford to pay for a monthly mortgage repayment, we just don't have a deposit. And at this rate, never will. Grrrrr.

He's definitely not the worst landlord I've ever had but he's somewhere near the top. And I've been renting for 17 years (I hate to think how much I've spent on lining the pockets of such twunts over that time)

specialsubject Mon 11-May-15 22:25:33

no, this is not the crap that renters should have to put up with. This is what the law is supposed to protect against. Unfortunately the wrong people are being targeted, the wrong laws are being made and crooks like this guy continue to get away with it. The revenge eviction bill will do nothing to help you, although you could always contact environmental health anyway.

Stop lining his pockets - give notice and go. Surprised you've lasted this long. Plenty of decent properties and decent landlords out, don't give your custom to the crooks. Same as in any other sphere of life.

he's to blame, not you - but he won't change as long as he gets easy money. Hit him where it hurts.

ovumahead Mon 11-May-15 22:51:37

Yes I know. But I'm not moving when I'm pregnant - I did that last time and it was an absolute nightmare. Aside from him and these ongoing issues we actually like the house. And it's detached - after living only in flats for ages it's so nice to be able to make noise! We will go but probably in about a year. Desperately trying to save for a deposit and moving is just so expensive! Want to be free of these kind of people forever.

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