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Tackling tenants who neglect and damage your property Fri, 16 May 2014 15:09

No landlord wishes to have to deal with problem tenants, but even with the best prior arrangements made, they can still occur from time to time. You may be especially convinced to sell a house with sitting tenants if your property is damaged and neglected by the tenant. Although rental properties frequently sustain damage, it is often minor and accidental, with the landlord paying for the cost of repairs to minimise hassle.


A far greater problem is if the tenant shows a complete lack of respect for your property and their responsibility to keep it clean and in good condition, alongside basic maintenance like changing the light bulbs. Although responsibility for most repairs lies with the landlord, you should still be able to reclaim the cost of this if the damage is the tenant's fault.


There is an obligation for the tenant to comply with the terms of the tenancy agreement relating to such matters as the keeping of pets, and if a failure to do so forces repairs to be carried out, you can request that they pay for this or deduct the money from their damage deposit. This covers everything except any 'fair wear and tear' to carpets and other furnishings, which you'll need to pay for through other means.


Before telling a tenant that you will charge them for the damage, you should ensure that you have photographic proof that it was sustained during their period of occupation of the property. You should also properly cost it out with quotes, so that you have a response if the figure is disputed by the tenant.


In some cases, the damage may amount to a lot more than 'fair wear and tear', but the tenant may not agree to carry out repairs themselves or contribute to the costs. If so, you have the right to serve the tenant with an eviction notice if you so wish. Money can be taken from their damage deposit to put towards the repair work. Although it is also possible to initiate legal action to get the tenant to pay for the damage themselves, the costs of doing so deters many landlords.


What else can you do if your tenant is causing problems, which may or may not be limited to damage and neglect? Many landlords opt to sell a house with sitting tenants to a cash property buyer like Dream House Buyer. We guarantee an offer irrespective of the exact problem, and will also be absolutely discreet in completing the transaction. 

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