Local Authority insisting on trivial repairs?

Local Authority insisting on trivial repairs?

16:14 PM, 14th July 2022, About 4 weeks ago 36

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Hi Folks, Recently had a tenant run to environmental health after I told her I’m not willing to re-house her or lower the rent. Anyway, met the officer down there yesterday (after 3 days notice) to go through the place with the tenant to find that very little needs doing, as I suspected.

Anyway, opened my emails this morning to a long list of trivial items including that need to be carried out within 4 weeks, ’employ a competent roofer to re-align 2 slipped slates ‘, ‘ top up roof insulation to 270mm ‘, ‘ replace ground floor doors with sound solid timber constructed doors ‘.

Don’t get me wrong I do intend to have these works done but are the council acting within their jurisdiction given that the EPC is a D ( so why is he asking for loft insulation top up, especially in the middle of summer ? ), and by the tenants own admission, the roof is not leaking. The second he met me at the front door he mentioned that most of his inspections are HMO properties and he needed to check if fire escape windows were necessary? ( on a single occupancy 2 bedroom mid terrace).

I do wonder if sometimes these people just like to test how much they can throw their weight about. I mean, just say hypothetically, I point blank refused to top up loft insulation in a baking July heatwave, knowing that I have a valid D grade EPC.

Would the council be willing to fight something like this out in court?

Trapped Landlord



Comments

Des Taylor & Phil Turtle, Landlord Licensing & Defence

15:30 PM, 15th July 2022, About 4 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Paul Essex at 15/07/2022 - 13:40
As mentioned above. FIRE doesn't think "Ah this house was built in the 70s I'll give this one a miss"

Knowledge improves.

Landlords are vicariously responsible for the safety of their tenants.

Only the foolish take chances with tenants lives

Luke P

15:31 PM, 15th July 2022, About 4 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Des Taylor & Phil Turtle, Landlord Licensing & Defence at 15/07/2022 - 15:28
The Fire Brigade will literally visit and tell you it’s not necessary. Nice-to-have, sure…but if you have hundreds of properties, it’s not feasible to upgrade for the sake of it.

Trapped Landlord

15:49 PM, 15th July 2022, About 4 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Luke P at 15/07/2022 - 15:31
Agreed, If others are looking to improve on safety more than whats legally required then thats really up to them, pretty sure my tenants are not seeking to pay higher rents than whats on their tenancy agreement. My understanding is that fire doors are not mandatory on a single occupancy terraced house. Likewise if there is a gas explosion from the boiler and the landlord has a valid gas cert, id be struggling to see how he/she could end up in prison.

Luke P

15:54 PM, 15th July 2022, About 4 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Des Taylor & Phil Turtle, Landlord Licensing & Defence at 15/07/2022 - 15:30It also doesn’t end with fire doors. What about self-closers? Smoke seals? There comes a point where it’s considered ‘acceptable’. Egg crate doors are acceptable.

The post was about whether the council bod was able/correct to request this (and, presumably, if failing to do so would result in any further action)…

Michael Johnson - Amzac Estates View Profile

16:10 PM, 15th July 2022, About 4 weeks ago

If the officer was using HHSRS then it’s entirely possible that a fire door was required. Slipped slates may lead to a leak and upgrading the loft insulation is sensible. I am not defending the officer but these are simply items that they have pointed out. Why waste time and effort just get it sorted. Everyone wins in this case, landlords already have a poor reputation, why would anyone want to be at the bare minimum, surely you would prefer a higher standard of house to rent out.

Luke P

18:15 PM, 15th July 2022, About 4 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Amzac Estates at 15/07/2022 - 16:10
It is not about ‘what’s best’ or resolving this particular LL’s case, rather what is required, through threat of penalty or not.

I have taken the HHSRS course…trained by the chap who co-wrote the legislation. I would be asking for both the calculations and the qualification of the inspecting council bod. Locally I discovered they’re not trained. They don’t expect LLs to know any different. Whilst there’s a lot of interpretation, it’s set against standards and what you’ll find is they’ll do nonsense like decide for themselves that it is sn increased fire risk merely because it’s not a fire door. They’re misinterpreting HHSRS and need to be called out.

Specifically on fire doors, LACORS will show they’re not necessary. Bugger this numpty off and let him take you to task.

Trapped Landlord

20:07 PM, 15th July 2022, About 4 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Amzac Estates at 15/07/2022 - 16:10Your correct, landlords do have a bad reputation, but id rather be a landlord and take the reputation than a tenant with the reputation they have. Im just trying to figure out exactly where I stand legally because one day I might just feel like saying " NO " , I think your wrong and if you'd like to take me to court over a slightly dislodged slate then get on with it. Besides which, they must have plenty of landlords who leave boilers unfixed for months and illegal evictions being carried out to worry about.

homemaker

6:59 AM, 16th July 2022, About 4 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Trapped Landlord at 15/07/2022 - 20:07
Correct. They’ve got bigger fish to fry. There’s no point worrying too much about an email with minor recommendations. Just take the useful bits and chill.

John Grefe

7:43 AM, 16th July 2022, About 4 weeks ago

Interesting comments! As landlord myself I put the tenants welfare at the top of my list. Therefore I don't have any SS officer fishing! You owe it to the tenants family, usually Mum & Dad to "look after their child, even if they are over 21! The rage of a grieving mother isn't nice. Keep whatever rental property in top condition, then you will encourage good quality tenants, not ones who want to shelter from the rain. Incase you are wondering, I don't have much time for these "desk jerks" who have alot of power.

Mick Roberts View Profile

8:40 AM, 16th July 2022, About 4 weeks ago

I have a Bee in my bonnet about solid doors in normal residential house when we han't got to have 'em in our own houses.

DASH who are very good, who do the accredititation for Nottingham Council Imbecile Selective Licensing, insist on solid doors when inspecting. Would cost me about £70,000 when tenants don't shut door at night anyway. And like Trapped Landlord said above:

pretty sure my tenants are not seeking to pay higher rents than whats on their tenancy agreement. My understanding is that fire doors are not mandatory on a single occupancy terraced house.

My tenants too are paying cheap rents which don't pay for New Build standards. Govt are out-pricing people out their homes.

One of my tenants had to write in this when told she can't have what she likes in her own home:

Dear Licensing Fools/Council Imbeciles/DASH Good people,

You've requested my Landlord does the following below and next to your requests are my reasons for refusing.

My Mum has an open plan kitchen living room, yet are we saying I can't?
Why does a Private Renter has to have rules imposed on us that Home owners & Council people don't?

I know you've put a door up & I'm gonna' take it down like last time. I've took the door off as I like open plan and I am not having a door on the kitchen.

I don't shut my doors at night anyway, have pets that need to come & go.

If I want to put carpet in my bathroom, I will do. Do I come & tell the Councillor what colour window she's having? Do I tell her what she has to have on her floors. Some of u authorities are forgetting this is my home & I've been with my Landlord approx 12 years, if I want carpet on the ceiling, I shall have it. U han't got to live here, I have.

It's not like we are stopping in a hotel for one night where I've got to have what the hotel provides and do what they say.
This is my home of 10 years so far and hopefully another 10 years. And I will have what I want.
Licensing assumes we all kids being treated like crap by our Landlords and licensing wants to change things. However, I don't want things changing. It's my home and I can have it how I want. I know Private home owners can do what they like, so why can't I IN MY OWN HOME?

There is no room for sink in the toilet which is directly next to the bathroom.
I am also hopefully buying this house off Mick with his welcome 5% deposit paid for us, and I will then be knocking the toilet into the bathroom. That's unless the Govt may change the rules again and say we're not allowed toilets in bathrooms and have to go back to separate.

I don't want the hard wired interlinked battery back up smoke alarms. I've heard if I run out of electric in middle of night, smoke alarms start beeping. People then rip them down. They now have none. Cheap battery ones are safer for me.

I was here way before Licensing came & am paying discounted rent of approximately £200pm cheaper than it should be. If you force my Landlord to do stuff we don't want, it's nor rocket science that the rent will have to go up to be more in line with what things cost nowadays.

This is an invasion of our privacy after a fantastic 12 years with our Landlord.
How would u feel if your mortgage lender wrote to u and said u must put door back on open plan kitchen, u must rip the ceiling down to put smoke alarms in I don't want in? Why are us as tenants being treated any different? Don't we have a choice? I repeat again it's my home and I am having what I want it my home.

I'm sick of the upheaval since Licensing. My right to quiet enjoyment has been took away. I've had house ripped apart for Electrical certificate, inspections every 4 months when previously I was left alone, my own decorating damaged. I'm not having it any more.
My Landlord now talks about selling the houses cause he too sick of it.

This is victimisation of the Private tenant.

These requests aren't required on Private homeowners nor Council housing. Us tenants that are happy as we are for the last few years constantly being targeted because we have a private Landlord. Do us tenants have a choice what we want?

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