Mike W

Registered with Property118.com
Tuesday 10th September 2013

Latest Comments

Total Number of Property118 Comments: 200

Mike W

8:53 AM, 27th June 2019
About 7 months ago

Can I refuse viewings or photographs being taken?

Hi Samantha, You asked some reasonable questions and have received a range of views. It all comes down to what is reasonable. Unfortunately it is a 3 party situation whereby an agent is acting for the landlord and appears to be acting in their (the agent's) own interest. So some thoughts.
You are paying rent and I'm sure your contract will say that you, in return for the rent payment, are entitled to the peaceful occupation. Then at the end of your tenancy there will be a clause covering viewings. It is important that you read that clause. I suspect that there is no clause in your contract which requires you to allow photos. I use the word requires. You may allow it but I suspect you have the right to refuse. One res ponder has made the comparison with selling the property. I do not see the comparison other than there is some logistical similarity. A seller has a financial interest to present. You do not. But you may wish to be reasonable and understand his position. As a reasonable landlord, he may understand your position: win - win. As a landlord I have always recognised this and carefully liaise with the tenant to agree what can and cannot be done. I restrict viewings to fit in with the tenant whether I am selling or re renting. For example I try to batch viewings on one day over 1-2 hours depending on how many interested parties I have. Since my properties tend to go quickly both I and the tenant can fully co-operate. Both, in my opinion, are reasonable.
To answer your specific questions:
1. It depends. If your contract says they have the right, then it would be whether it was reasonable if there are a multitude of requests or their were sound reasons for you to say no.
2. I think that is reasonable if you have had multiple requests and it is being disruptive for you. (Keep records)
3. Yes and put it in writing. I am always surprised that security is an aspect which is not seriously considered in the process of advertising ....
4. No, particularly if you have told them no AND there is nothing in your contract which specifically says they have that right. If they do take photos then I suggest you report them to the agents regulator and write to them saying that you hold them responsible for any loss you may incur as a result of your loss of security. There are legal aspects here.
5. Yes if you have reason to believe that they have no legitimate reason for the inspection. To put this into perspective: As a bachelor (many years ago) an agent requested an inspection. I took time off work to be at the property. The inspection took an hour and was 'kind of formal' with clip board etc. Two weeks later I had another request. I contacted them to ask why they now wanted another. They said they had not done an inspection two weeks prior. I took another day off work. The same person came round with the clip board. Nothing was noted. Only this time when the agent moved to leave I said they could not leave unless they signed a piece of paper saying they had undertaken an inspection at time and date. (It was many years ago when technology was not as it is today.) There was an impasse for a few minutes. She eventually signed. I never had another inspection for the next three years (when I left). When I told the landlord he was very apologetic. Incompetent agent.... Read More

Mike W

21:21 PM, 26th March 2019
About 10 months ago

MP Iain Duncan Smith criticises George Osborne’s Housing Policies

At last some realisation that taxing people who want to move, up sizing or downsizing or relocating, is not a sensible idea. It removes fluidity from market and the market will cease to function. And similarly taxing those individuals who wish to help to provide homes (in the same way as other housing bodies) is not sensible. It has the same effect.... Read More

Mike W

12:15 PM, 25th March 2019
About 10 months ago

64% of portfolio landlords now intend purchasing in a Ltd co.

Excellent news BUT I have found the market very restrictive. Only two lenders prepared to consider and rates roughly 3% higher than I can get on a personal basis. And these are loans less than 50% LTV but of course Scotland and HMO and students. But they fly like kites. (And that is based on discussions with multiple brokers.) For this option to take off this has to change rapidly. It has severely restricted the rate of transfer of assets to our company.... Read More

Mike W

14:02 PM, 18th March 2019
About 10 months ago

Does bathroom with window need extraction fans?

I sometimes wonder whether we live in UK or USSR. Whilst modern building regulations may set a requirement for a bathroom fan even if there is a window, I am surprised that some people say they can't afford to buy a house or flat. I wonder what increases the new build cost .... unnecessary equipment?
As to the council applying new build regulation to old houses, they don't do it to owner occupiers do they? Do they apply the same regulation to ALL of their own council property?
Level playing field.

Oh and by the way Scotland is thinking of introducing regulation that requires owner occupiers to have minimum EPC levels in order to sell property ...

And one other gem. Building regulations (Scotland) have now made houses virtually airtight. And of course people are not used to this so they go to bed and don't ventilate. So now building regulations require a carbon dioxide alarm in bedrooms, so people don't die from carbon dioxide poisoning. Seriously! Section 3.14.2 of 2017 regs.

So we will all be living in state owned high rise boxes soon.

From a practical point of view, if you assume tenants don't know about these sorts of aspects of how to live a healthy life, or don't care about damaging your property with condensation or mould, then you put in a fan like the Rolls Royce RB211. That should sort it.... Read More

Mike W

11:41 AM, 6th March 2019
About 11 months ago

DPS and TPO giving contradicting advice and reviews?

I think you should seriously consider the small claims process - if you have the time to do it yourself. If you believe you have a viable claim then go ahead. It really is not complex. I do not have much faith in Ombudsmen and interestingly for the first time last month made a claim against ombudsman services for incompetent handling of a case in which they initially tried to 'brush me off'. Within a day of the CEO receiving my letter I had a call and £125 offer of compensation for failures on their part which I accepted provided they made good on a previous adjudication.

I am not aware of the details around the property ombudsman but in the case of telecoms and utilities and finance the ombudsman decisions are only binding on the big organisation not 'the man on the street'.

If you have the time and patience - never give up.... Read More