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Should Landlord or Tenant pay to replace damaged carpet?

(38 Posts)
msmorgan Thu 06-Feb-14 20:42:24

Just wanting some opinions please?

My tenants of 3 years are moving out, they have generally been good tenants and are friends of friends so I'd like to keep things friendly if possible.

They told me the house was in excellent condition and didn't need anything doing, however when I went round there are quite a few things. I was obviously expecting to redecorate but was slightly annoyed that they've allowed their kids to scribble all over almost every wall, they've painted a fireplace, put wallpaper up, cracked a bathroom tile and not told me about tiles coming off a garden step.

The above I don't mind too much, I expected to have to funky redecorate anyway.

In the largest bedroom they have burned an iron mark into the carpet, I have said I would like them to pay to replace the carpet, I have said I don't mind having a cheaper carpet but for them to pay for it and the fitting.

The tenant has just text me to say he has been quoted £160 for supply and fit of like for like carpet, I know the carpet that is down was quite a lot more than that but would be happy as long as it looks similar. However he has said there is no way he is willing to pay that and would be willing to either split it 50/50 or give me £50 to just leave the current carpet down.

I am really pissed off at this, am I being unreasonable to expect them to pay for a replacement carpet?

specialsubject Sun 31-Aug-14 18:21:57

holistic - your deposit should be protected if the tenancy was renewed after 2007.

but tenants don't repaint or replace carpets, landlords do. Your deposit is only charged for damage, not wear and tear.

Holistichoney Sun 31-Aug-14 17:07:34

I have been in my rented house for 11 years and not had it painted or carpets replaced. My daughter was 1 and half and in my opinion place is in good condition still I have done as much as I can and afford to repare things. She is 13 now and moving out where do I stand on my deposit as worried I will not get it back? I gave found a tenant to take as seen but landlady not got back to me yet. Oh I have painted same colour 2 yrs ago and never done colours, wallpapered and hardley any hooks in walls etc

SoulJacker Sat 08-Feb-14 19:47:42

Normally a good carpet in a rental property would be expected to last 10 years, so to avoid betterment, the maximum you could charge the tenant would be 60% for a 4 year old carpet.

msmorgan Sat 08-Feb-14 19:41:46

I am tempted to inform the school of what I'm pretty sure they're doing (using the new house address of the friend they are renting off) but I'll not. I just hope they don't get a place, the alternatives closest to the new address are pretty awful.

I'm actually quite surprised at the lengths they're going to in ensuring a place in a particular school.

specialsubject Sat 08-Feb-14 18:07:59


Arohaitis Sat 08-Feb-14 15:34:09

For scribble (and other wall marks) you can get that magic erasure stuff from 99p shop type places.

(how do you spell erasure? it looks wrong but I've got brain failure!)

Arohaitis Sat 08-Feb-14 15:31:02

Shop them to the local authority about the school place (but that's a whole other thread lol)

Arohaitis Sat 08-Feb-14 15:29:14

Oh me I've never had a penny of a deposit retained (except once 80p by a terrible landlord who did some dreadful calculations to show I owed 80p in unpaid rent despite the fact I had overpaid) since he held all of the previous tenants deposit (a fact they very kindly came round to warn me about) I let it go.

msmorgan Sat 08-Feb-14 15:14:57

It's my own fault for being too trusting. I'm quite aware of the legal info etc re letting as my sister runs a letting agency and my dad rents out properties as does DP's dad.

It was purely because we know the family that I didn't bother to take a deposit. I've been reading through the tenancy agreement and there's about six different points that they've breached throughout the tenancy, nothing major but. I could have caused a fuss.

After a few heated discussions he has agreed to transfer £80 into my account today. As soon as it goes in I'm going to tell him I want the networking he's put in every room taken out before they leave and that he can pay our mutual "friend" the £40 I apparently owe him. I'm probably being a bit petty, but he's pissed me off.

specialsubject Sat 08-Feb-14 11:05:35

I'm afraid your friend is a crook and you are probably only the latest in a long line. The school is next.

sorry. Dump him and make sure he can't defraud you any more. There is also a blacklist kept of dodgy tenants...

Notawordfromtheladybird Sat 08-Feb-14 10:30:10

Get a company in to do professional inventory. Around here, LL pays checkin and tenant pays checkout. About £100 each. Put into your lease that tenant pays checkout fees.

All the painted walls needed to be put back to the colour they were at start of tenancy. With an inventory and protected scheme, you could have deducted for redecorating all the walls and fireplace back to original colour. Normally, even if you are allowed to paint, most landlords will give you permission in writing either for a specific colour only, or with agreement that you repaint it back to xx colour at end of tenancy.

msmorgan Fri 07-Feb-14 21:34:04

Well I have definitely learned a lesson. I got some quotes today which I sent to him asking him to pay an amount towards it (which I worked out based on what you would normally deduct from a deposit in this situation). He replied basically saying he was willing to pay less than half what I asked for.

I have pointed out to him that I was doing him a favour not taking a deposit, renting the house to him for less than I could have etc and that was based on trusting that the house would be kept in excellent condition. I have had quite a few polite but insulting replies.

In the end I can't be bothered to argue with him over a fairly small amount of money. It was never about the amount, I am just so annoyed that someone I thought of as a friend has screwed me over. I've replied basically saying it's not worth arguing over and that it was my mistake to have not kept things more business like.

Will be taking all the above advice and future lets will be purely business (and I hope they don't get the school place they have moved to a crappy house and lied about the address for, not that I'm bitter!).

eggsandwich Fri 07-Feb-14 16:23:28

Unfortunately you have been too trusting of people by not taking a deposit. When I first started out as a landlord I was also too trusting and got my fingers burnt but not any more, even If I know the prospective tenant I always insist on a deposit you don't trust anyone in this business sadly, and quite frankly your tenant is taking the piss, but as you have no holding deposit there isn't a lot you can do just learn from this.

HaveToWearHeels Fri 07-Feb-14 15:09:16

This is the exact reason DH and I never ever rent to anyone we know. Our BTL's are a business and we don't mix that with pleasure.
Sorry you have an expensive mistake OP but I hope you have learnt from it. Never agree to redecoration, given an inch tenants will take a mile. Never negotiate on anything with a tenant. Always take loads of photos and give them copies on a disk as part of the inventory, get them to sign to say they have received and agree.
Scribble on walls, wallpapering, painting a fireplace, not maintaining the garden, a burnt carpet, cracked tiles, not paying the rent on time, these were not good tenants at all !

specialsubject Fri 07-Feb-14 10:44:14

as you didn't take a deposit you are stuffed, you'll have to take whatever he'll pay.

having had wall scribbles (not as bad as yours) and iron burn on carpet (what is WRONG with people?) be warned that even with a deposit you wouldn't get much replacement value unless the carpet was brand new at start of tenancy, and you'll lose 3 years wear and tear off it anyway. So take whatever he'll pay.

next time - take a deposit and visit every 3 months to start with, six monthly after that. Make it clear that there is to be NO painting.

Elderberri Thu 06-Feb-14 23:04:42

The law says that fair wear and tear is anything that is worn in the natural context of living, like maybe paint getting worn from being brushed past, sinks, and other items from everyday use, carpets worn from being walked on.

What is not coverd is accidental damage, such as iron burn, or willful damage, writing on the wall.

We just returned our rented house, it clearly had been lived in, but we fixed whatever was damaged, touched up any scuff on the walls, and had the carpets cleaned. We got our full deposit back.

You should photo the damage, because you just can't take it out of the deposit it has to be agreed, if you have the deposit in one of those accounts.

But if they have been good tenants, you should take it into consideration.

msmorgan Thu 06-Feb-14 22:52:00

I think I'll push for him to pay as much as possible and mention the fact that I'm having to strip paper off and make repairs etc.

I think seeing as we have a few friends in common he'll not be too unreasonable about things.

Next tenant I'll just get the letting agent to do everything. At least I can finally put the rent up!

WaitingForMe Thu 06-Feb-14 22:35:08

Sadly an expensive lesson. You have my sympathies thanks

lilyaldrin Thu 06-Feb-14 22:15:25

It sounds like you can't really insist they pay anything in that case.

msmorgan Thu 06-Feb-14 22:14:49

Sorry about all the mistakes, iPad is auto correcting. I will be fully not funky redecorating and pics are on an SD not sad card!

I'm going through a local estate agents using their tenant find service for the relet. It was just coincidence that this couple were looking for a place when I'd just finished doing my house up, and a mutual friend mentioned it. I probably should have been more business like about everything.

I have a tenancy agreement, Landlords insurance, gas safety cert etc but the itinerary is not as good as it should have been. I should have just said no redecorating given that it had just been done, all very neutral. The bathroom now has bright red walls.

msmorgan Thu 06-Feb-14 22:03:58

I didn't take a bond as we know them and trusted them not to cause much damage, which they haven't really. Also due to the fact that from my experience bonds are only much use if there is extreme damage or non payment of rent , and they were really skint when they moved in, I was probably a bit soft, I'll def be taking a bond next time.

I did do a basic inventory and have photos on a sad card but you can't really make out if there was an iron mark where there is now on that rooms picture. If it came to it they could lie and say it was already there.

I have replied to him very politely saying whilst I don't mind paying something towards the cost of a new carpet I won't pay half and want to chose the carpet myself. He's saying his mate will sort it out and fit it this weekend, I've said no to that.

Featherbag Thu 06-Feb-14 21:29:24

That's the other thing OP, inventories. No check-in inventory = no deductions unfortunately. If there was an inventory done I'd seek advice on how much you can legally deduct for the carpet (principles cost unnecessary time and money) and add on the cost of having a decorator restore the rooms decorated without permission to plain magnolia walls.

lilyaldrin Thu 06-Feb-14 21:24:26

I recently got 100% of my deposit back after the landlord tried to retain 100%! It went to arbitration through the deposit scheme and basically he couldn't replace damaged things with new, and he didn't have sufficient proof through a properly conducted check-in/check-out, inventory with photographs.

lessonsintightropes Thu 06-Feb-14 21:21:41

I've never had 100% of deposit back, and don't know any other people renting in London who have had it either, despite being far better tenants than yours - I've always paid rent on the day due in full, and before we then bought had renovated four ruined gardens in rental properties (i.e. resowing lawn, reinstating and stocking flower beds) and undertaken routine maintenance with full agreement of LL (including painting external maisonary window framing etc). Think your tenants are taking the piss to be honest.

WaitingForMe Thu 06-Feb-14 21:20:41

My tenants deposit is registered and protected but I hold no truck with that degree of damage to a property. If my tenant tried this they'd gave to take me to court for their money. I'd do it as a matter of principle and I'm the kind of person that won't see my tenants go an hour more than necessary with a repair, conducts electricity checks (not legally required) etc.

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