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AIBU?

To expect my landlord to fix this

18 replies

lucielou82 · 09/09/2022 08:21

I live in a tiny cottage owned by a huge estate (stately home style)! They have over 200 properties. The garden and driveway are awful. When I took over the property they said it was my responsibility to look after the garden, so fair enough I've tried my best and put up with an awful garden. However the driveway is becoming unusable. It was never great to begin with. They just poured gravel on top of an uneven base. But during the past few years I've rented the gravel has displaced, weeds have grown up and huge pot holes are forming. Because it was never done properly the huge lawn/field next to us is taking over and there are huge pot holes, which cause damage to my car. People from the estate came out three weeks ago to look at it and agreed it wasn't fit for purpose, and said they'd look t the budget. I've not heard a peep since and have chased three times. As I said, im happy to deal with the garden but I don't have the money or man power to fox a driveway that's unusable and turning into a health and safety issue. Can anyone advise... I assume as a landlord they have to sort this out, as I have to use the driveway and walk on it to access to my cottage.

OP posts:
Lockheart · 09/09/2022 08:25

It sounds like you've never done any basic tidying of the drive - sweeping gravel back into place and weeding. I wouldn't expect the landlords to do that and it would have saved you some trouble. But they should certainly fix the potholes!

I work with estates like this and three weeks isn't a crazy amount of time. But could you go to the estate office perhaps and ask in person?

Person18885 · 09/09/2022 08:26

Lockheart · 09/09/2022 08:25

It sounds like you've never done any basic tidying of the drive - sweeping gravel back into place and weeding. I wouldn't expect the landlords to do that and it would have saved you some trouble. But they should certainly fix the potholes!

I work with estates like this and three weeks isn't a crazy amount of time. But could you go to the estate office perhaps and ask in person?

this in a nutshell

Justwantanicepeacfulholiday · 09/09/2022 08:26

YANBU. Bare minimum they should properly dump gravel and fill.

Fireyflies · 09/09/2022 08:34

Yes I'd expect them to fix the potholes, but it's not an urgent matter so taking 3 weeks to find someone to do it isn't unreasonable. Went don't you give them a call or email to ask for an update?

It's your job to remove the weeds.

lucielou82 · 09/09/2022 08:42

@Lockheart this is totally not true. Can you ask me how I'm meant to sweep gravel over huge pot holes? And can I also ask why the property manager agreed that the driveway's foundations had not been laid properly and it was not my responsibility to sort out. A proper gravel driveway with a few weeds is easy to maintain. A driveway, which has never had a proper base/hardcore put down is impossible. To put it into perspective I will have paid nearly £30k to live in the property I'm in for 2 1/2 years I don't think it's unreasonable to ask them to fix it, especially when they've just raised the rent

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lucielou82 · 09/09/2022 08:43

@Fireyflies these aren't small pot holes. These are causing damage to my car type pot holes. I have of course emailed and called.

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lucielou82 · 09/09/2022 08:47

Thanks @Justwantanicepeacfulholiday I rent out a property and as soon as my tenants have a problem (from broken toilet seat/electrics) someone is out within 24 hours sorting it out!

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fyn · 09/09/2022 08:49

I’d have a look at your lease, when I was an estate manager we always put in that the tenant was responsible for X% of access track repairs. It’s the same for every estate I’ve worked on from 60 houses to 1000+.

At best I’d expect the maintenance team or farm workers to come along occasionally and patch fill the holes with gravel. Knowing it was a rural property with a gravel track, there is no way they are going to dig it all up and put a new driveway in. Three weeks isn’t particularly unreasonable though, particularly with the amount of rain there has been.

NoSquirrels · 09/09/2022 08:51

Three weeks isn’t ages. Call in to see someone in person and ask about the timescale to get it done. If it’s too long, ask them to temporary fix the worst potholes.

lucielou82 · 09/09/2022 08:52

Hi @fyn thanks for your response this is really helpful. I will look. As I said, if it was just weeds etc I would be all over it and not expect them to maintain it but it's the large pot holes that are a problem. They filled them two years ago but in the dry heat the car churns up the holes/dust again and the cars almost get stuck! Then when it rains the holes become worse. I was not expecting it to be fixed in this time, but to have been given an update would have been good. It is starting to cause damage to my car and I already had to have it pulled out last winter, as it got stuck in the mud. In my mind that's not fit for purpose.

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NoSquirrels · 09/09/2022 08:52

lucielou82 · 09/09/2022 08:47

Thanks @Justwantanicepeacfulholiday I rent out a property and as soon as my tenants have a problem (from broken toilet seat/electrics) someone is out within 24 hours sorting it out!

24 hours is unrealistic for a non-urgent repair, though. And I don’t think anyone could argue this is urgent. It’s inconvenient and annoying, but not urgent.

lucielou82 · 09/09/2022 08:54

@NoSquirrels not asking them to have fixed it in 24 hours! My expectations aren't that high haha but I just would like an update in three/four weeks. I don't think that's unreasonable... especially as I've been bringing this up for two years.

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womaninatightspot · 09/09/2022 08:56

I have a gravel drive every year that belongs to an estate although house is mine. Every year you fill in any potholes with hardcore (stones and cement dust). Then lay fresh gravel on top and pull out weeds / strim/ spray with weedkiller. I am responsible for 75% of the cost. You buy in bulk at builders merchants and they deliver in 1 tonne bags about £90 a bag here. Place these strategically on drive as it'll save a lot of walking. Then spread with a wheelbarrow and shovel.

I pay upfront and invoice the estate for their 25% with copy of receipt.

TwoLeftSocksWithHoles · 09/09/2022 08:57

'I don't have the money or man power to fox a driveway'

Sounds like it's already foxed!🐺

Putting gravel in a pothole won't solve the problem for long it will just migrate out of the hole. They need to use something like tarmac which binds together and adheres to the hole.

lucielou82 · 09/09/2022 08:59

@womaninatightspot I can understand you sharing the cost of you own the house the driveway has access to. But I don't own the house. The driveway only goes to my cottage and isn't huge, but I would expect them to fix it. As I would fox the driveway in the property I rent out, if it was causing my tenants problems. I guess there are landlords who care and respect their tenants are paying a lot of money to the landlords each month, and those that just want to do minimum for their tenants.

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lucielou82 · 09/09/2022 09:00

@TwoLeftSocksWithHoles haha if only I could fox the problem! Yes, they've filled in pot holes before but it's a false economy as it doesn't work. I guess I'll just have to wait and see. Seems to be two camps here...I guess not all landlords want to maintain their properties to the standard I would.

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Justwantanicepeacfulholiday · 09/09/2022 09:01

lucielou82 · 09/09/2022 08:47

Thanks @Justwantanicepeacfulholiday I rent out a property and as soon as my tenants have a problem (from broken toilet seat/electrics) someone is out within 24 hours sorting it out!

There is obviously a massive Difference in urgency between electrical issues and driveway.

lucielou82 · 09/09/2022 09:04

@Justwantanicepeacfulholiday obviously but a broken toilet seat isn't urgent! I just respect my tenants and like to get things sorted and nice for them ASAP as they are paying me rent and expect a service. Guess my expectations are too high. Though I never said I wanted the problem fixed within 24 hours, just an update within three/four weeks.

Thanks so much for all your replies and helpful comments. I'm a single mum, that works full time and whilst I wish I had the money and time to sort the driveway out for my landlord and improve his property for him, I unfortunately don't. Hope you all have lovely weekends.i guess I'll just have to wait and see what happens.

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