End of Tenancy Repairs … vinyl flooring

by Readers Question

7:54 AM, 2nd December 2013
About 7 years ago

End of Tenancy Repairs … vinyl flooring

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End of Tenancy Repairs … vinyl flooring

I have a property that has been let to a DSS tenant which has now come to an end.

We had vinyl flooring in the kitchen and dinning room to which has been ripped from when they have moved their furniture (washing machine, fridge.. etc)

My question is, does any Landlord who lets to DSS tenant bother putting down vinyl in kitchens etc and have they experienced the same problem. My worry is if I spend the deposit doing the floor again this will just be ripped next time. End of Tenancy Repairs ... vinyl flooring

Any advice?

Andy


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Mark Alexander

8:04 AM, 2nd December 2013
About 7 years ago

Hi Andy

I really can't see any correlation between the tenants financial status and the fact that your flooring got ripped. With respect, I suggest you used the wrong flooring and should not be charging the costs of replacement back to your tenant for wear and tear. I think a deposit protection adjudicator would probably agree if the matter was disputed by your tenant.

Vinyl flooring is generally fine in bathrooms and occasionally hallways where furniture isn't moved around. Wherever there are tables and chairs I would say vinyl is a big NO/NO. You can make vinyl flooring less likely to tear by having it stuck to the floor but the floor needs to be totally smooth, otherwise it looks terrible and shows every bump and crevice. To achieve a good finish the floor would need to be professionally screeded and that's not cheap.

I suggest tiles in kitchens and carpets in lounges. Wooden floors can also work in lounges and dining areas but can be cold to the foot if there is no under-floor heating.
.

10:02 AM, 2nd December 2013
About 7 years ago

Hi Andy,

I am afraid that you cannot spend the deposit to re-do the flooring without the tenant's consent.

At the end of the tenancy, you need to take a final inventory and Schedule of Condition, compare that to the first inventory at the start of the tenancy, and then created a list of deposit deductions to present to the tenant.

If they agree, no problem.

If not, then it will have to go to adjudication.

If the vinyl flooring was not ripped when they move in, I actually disagree with Mark and believe that you have a good case to get the costs from the deposit, provided of course that you have the necessary documentary evidence provided by an inventory.

Mark Alexander

10:28 AM, 2nd December 2013
About 7 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Vanessa Warwick" at "02/12/2013 - 10:02":

Hi Vanessa

Just suppose you were to dress a fully furnished property with furniture made out of balsa wood and pater mache. Crazy I know but there is a point to this.

The first time your tenant uses a chair or table it collapses. Your tenant would have a very good argument that the furnishings were not fit for purpose wouldn't he?

I think there is a similar case to be made for using vinyl flooring in areas with greater then average movement of furniture.

With regards to your other point I agree with you, if the tenant consent to the deduction that's fine, if not it's over to arbitration which, in this case, is probably not worth the effort.
.

10:38 AM, 2nd December 2013
About 7 years ago

Mark,

The tenant has to sign off and agree to the inventory.

Presumably they would have seen the property before agreeing to the inventory and Schedule of Condition?

If it quickly became obvious that the furniture was not fit for purpose, the tenant should complain and ask for another property inspection to point out the problems and record the issues to the inventory.

Imfuna Let has just launched Version 3, which is the first ever side-by-side digital inventory comparison tool which will be invaluable for tenants and landlords alike.

Compare side by side reports on your mobile:

http://www.imfuna.com/30intro.html

Andy

19:21 PM, 2nd December 2013
About 7 years ago

Hi guys
I think the conversation went abit too deep into legal. Good advice but I do understand all of that as I've been a landlord for 5 years and qualified surveyor for 3.. The inventory before and after confirms tenant had damaged the vinyl and there is no dispute.

I just wanted to know of any hints or tips with floor coverings etc as I thought you may have come up with similar issues. I mentioned DSS as since the majority have pets this may influence getting a carpet in a living room or a wooden floor. I just wanted to see if anyone thought different or had came up with a different solution

Cheers

Mark Alexander

20:39 PM, 2nd December 2013
About 7 years ago

Two of our members, Mick Roberts and Jonathan Clarke, specialise in the bottom end of the market and don't provide floor coverings at all.
.

Puzzler

15:41 PM, 4th December 2013
About 7 years ago

I have used vinyl with no problems but in a built-in kitchen where no large items had to be moved. I would have to take a view whether the damage was "wear and tear" and so not recoverable. Where I have used it the fitters have laid a plywood base for levelling which is much cheaper than screeding. However it was a new property so the floor was in a good condition. You can get a reasonable quality fairly cheap. I use cheap with the view that I will have to renew it frequently due to usage which I think is what you have here. If it's down to carelessness then you might have a case but it would have to be really obvious as the TDS would probably give the tenant the benefit of the doubt..

Tom Thumb

23:16 PM, 21st December 2013
About 7 years ago

From what Andy says, the damage was caused by moving large items such as a fridge and washing machine across the vinyl floor, and not by normal wear and tear?

There is nothing 'wrong' with vinyl flooring as such - some of them can be very high quality, and actually cost more than laminate flooring - and last better too! However, care needs to be taken when moving heavy objects that don't have wheels, and if a tenant or fitter dragged a washing machine across the floor tearing the vinyl in the process, then they are surely liable for the damage.

I do understand what Mark is saying; you can get some cheap or 'cushion' vinyl flooring which is pleasant to walk on but simply won't cope with chair legs etc. being moved across them, and if fitted in a dining area would clearly be unfit for purpose.

That doesn't seem to be the case here, tho'.

Andy

20:20 PM, 22nd December 2013
About 7 years ago

Thanks for your responses guys.

Jeremy Smith

12:00 PM, 23rd December 2013
About 7 years ago

Dear Andy,
As you've discovered, the right floor covering in the right area of the property makes all the difference as to whether you've got problems to sort out later, or not.

In one property I've laid soft vinyl in the kitchen and utility area, totally unsuitable to move furniture/appliances over, but since I supply the fridge/freezer and w/machine, i've told them not to move them, since it will damage the vinyl !
Although i've made a slight tear on it even before the tenants moved in, it's really difficult to keep undamaged where furniture is involved.

- Vinyl comes in a wide range of 'softnesses' and thicknesses, according to the application required, hard vinyl tiles are used by the council, they are tough and easily fitted, I think it used to be called 'marmolium', well, that's something I came across in rolls, usually used in publlic toilets !!!
Marmolium is extremely difficult to install from rolls - avoid !!

I've laid a laminate floor in another house, hard wearing, through the entrance hall, dining room and kitchen - 5 year guarantee, 10x harder wearing than normal range, etc..this has made a fantastic solution to what could have been a mish-mash of different floor coverings, and is completely maintenance free - Well Worth the extra time, trouble and expense to put it down !!


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