Registered with Property118.com
Wednesday 23rd March 2016

Latest Comments

Total Number of Property118 Comments: 41


8:17 AM, 21st November 2020
About 3 months ago

Excellent tenant wants a 20% rent reduction?

As others have said, different areas of the country have been affected differently so that is crucial to understanding your position.

Since March, I’ve had three tenants ask for reductions (two at renewal and one before).

The tenants have always paid on time and been ‘good’ tenants. In all cases I explained my costs were still the same so could they please let me know why they had requested the reduction.

The first one (during the initial lockdown) said rents and demand had fallen so that’s what they thought it should rent for. I spoke to agents who said it was a very uncertain time but the requested reduction of 20% was too much. So we agreed that she would move. I had to reduce the rent by just under 5%, have a 3 week void, pay agents and some furnishings costs. But that is still much less than the other tenant was asking. But I’m closer to my usual rent and it’s going to be easier to bring it back up.

In another property, the tenants just sadly could no longer afford the flat due to job losses. They needed a 25% rent reduction for an unspecified amount of time. I wanted to help but this was too much for me to be able to afford and too much risk. We got on well so I agreed to release them early from the contract and they luckily understood my position and wouldn’t take advantage of it like others might. They moved to a much cheaper area. I let the flat at around 6.5% rent reduction, plus increased agents costs with a week void.

In the last property, the tenants had been there for several years. Their requested reduction to be honest was a bit spurious (worried about self employment for one of the couple) and I knew the flat would let quickly. I offered a reduction back to what they originally paid when they moved in (and in line with the lowest I thought I’d get if I had re-let it quickly - I of course may have got more...) but I saved on agents costs and delayed the decorating I would need to do to re-let.

Another thing to think about is your mortgage. Some lenders ask for an annual updated rent roll and if you are letting at a reduced rate that is below their calculations (say 120% of rent at 5% interest) you could have problems. Plus if you are going to remortgage soon, the reduced rent could mess up the amount you can borrow.... Read More


9:10 AM, 14th November 2020
About 3 months ago

Water damage from baby sock?

I would say that despite providing manuals and also informing tenants when they move in about washing machine filters, dishwasher salt etc. I think less than 10% of tenants have ever filled the dishwasher salt (I always refill it between tenancies). No one has ever changed a cooker hood filter (and in ducted cases rarely clean the metal grease filter)
Those plastic shirt collar inserts are another thing that often gets stuck in a washing machine filter! Baby socks can get stuck too. If you read the reviews on certain brands, this seems to happen more often with specific models. In this case I don’t think it’s the tenants fault - it’s an accident. Although usually the blockage just results in a machine not draining rather than leaking but proving it was their negligence rather than an accident will be almost impossible.... Read More


8:53 AM, 12th September 2020
About 6 months ago

Shelter help disabled tenant win second 'No DSS' case

A lot of BTL mortgage conditions state no letting to tenants on benefits.
As usual Shelter is going after the easy targets - the letting agent who they can show advertised that way.
If they really wanted to help, they should get mortgage and insurance companies to change their clauses, then get govt to pay market rent in advance / provide rental guarantees themselves.
Or alternatively build enough social housing so there is no need for housing benefit paid to private landlords at all. Surely that would keep everyone happy and drive up standards all round?
But no, they want private individuals to address the successive government failings.... Read More


8:44 AM, 12th September 2020
About 6 months ago

He simply wants to keep it because he's paid for it?

Did the tenant ask for a refund of the two months initially and you refused? (as is your right).
Then it would make sense why they don’t want to help you out now. Your only option as others have indicated it to offer an inducement to them on top of the few days rent refund from the date you need access (not the date the new tenant moves in). And also point out the council tax savings in doing this.
But if they can afford to get what they presumably see as revenge, there may be nothing you can do apart from do the repairs with the new tenants in situ (assuming the old tenant has at least agreed to vacate from that date - if not you could be in a lot of trouble unfortunately).... Read More


8:31 AM, 8th August 2020
About 7 months ago

Funding for boilers and more coming

Hi Mark,

Do you cover (or know someone who does cover) west and north west London?

Am I right in that if the landlord has children under the age of 16 and receives child benefit that would satisfy the eligibility criteria (even if the tenants don’t receive any benefits?)

And is this a different scheme to the recently announced government one?

I have 7 properties where the boilers are over 7 years old. 3 have recently had issues and are likely to need replacement soon (one is getting looked at again this morning and might replacement urgently!)

The problem may be being able to do other qualifying criteria. 3 flats have access to loft spaces so could have insulation upgraded. The others all have solid walls and no loft spaces. I don’t think there is space to install solid wall installation without making rooms much smaller (and the ground floor flats have solid floors).

Two flats (without lofts) have original single glazed sash windows too.

Would be great to speak to someone about them.
Many thanks... Read More