Protected tenancy – Landlords responsibilities

by Readers Question

20:17 PM, 9th July 2013
About 5 years ago

Protected tenancy – Landlords responsibilities

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Protected tenancy – Landlords responsibilities

I have relatives who have a protected tenancy, living in an oldish house in a rural area. Now in their 70’s they are finding it impossible to heat the house adequately in the winters. The heating system is antiquated and in need of updating. They have already provided improved loft insulation, paid for cavity wall insulation & secondary glazing. The old wooden windows are rotten and have had several repairs over the years.

They have approached the Landlord’s Managing Agent (the property is owned by an Estate) who is very reluctant to do anything to bring the property up to today’s standards. There has been talk of perhaps installing a new wood-burning fired/fuelled system – mains gas is not available – but with the tenants paying for the installation of chimney-liners and other items.

I have read articles outlining the Protected Tenants rights and the protections afforded under that status. However, what rights do tenants have when it comes to major items being replaced when these items come to the end of their working life , and what obligations do Landlords have to maintain them or replace them ?

Thank you in advance for your comments.

Mike TProtected tenancy - Landlords responsibilities



Comments

andrew townshend

17:35 PM, 11th July 2013
About 5 years ago

might be worth looking into the green deal, as i understand it the landlord cannot refuse these improvements taking place.

sam

17:38 PM, 11th July 2013
About 5 years ago

By protected tenancy I take it that you mean Regulated Tenancy which is a legacy of a by-gone era whereby the tenant pays but a fraction of the market rent which can only be increased by courtesy of the Fair Rent officer and via the landlord jumping through hoops.

I dont know what rights the tenants have under these tenancies but I do know that landlords also have to eat - just like your relatives. So I dont rate your chances of enforcing whatever rights/landlord obligations without a protracted battle that might end up costing more than the end reward.

May be the landlord can afford to be more 'reasonable' if your relatives would agree to pay market rent. Or they can always threaten to move.

Else, try Green Deal or ECO.

andrew townshend

19:05 PM, 11th July 2013
About 5 years ago

in reply to sam above, not all regulated tenancies are paying a low rent , and the up side of these tenancies are their no voids.

Reader

22:03 PM, 11th July 2013
About 5 years ago

Approach the local Environmental Health Officer at the relevant District Council. All the costs should be met by the landlord. This exercise should be totally free of charge to your relatives. There may be a reference to Rent Officer for a rent increase but it speak to them first and see what could happen.
Dont forget that you too could benefit as in certain circumstances you will have a right to inherit their tenancy.
Read the Housing Health and Safety Rating System Regulations. I think your estate agent will turn pale.
Good luck. If really stuck contact Shelter or the Citizens Advice Bureau.

0:39 AM, 12th July 2013
About 5 years ago

I'm afraid tenants on regulated tenancies are takers.
LL had little choice than to offer such tenancies as AST's weren't around then.
If I was a LL I wouldn't be doing anything to the property.
I would not wish to subsidise a tenant's lifestyle just because they had a regulated tenancy.
My mother unforunately had some of these.
She had to wait until death of the tenant who fortunately had no siblings to pass the regulated tenancy onto before she could refurb the property and obtain market rent.
At 70 they are going to be a long time before they die.
the LL will do as little as possible in the meantime.
My suggestion would be to suggest that these tenants pay market rent subject to monies being reinvested in upgrading the property.
If I was the LL I would not object to that.
At some stage these tenants will die; but at least the property will be of a modern standard to relet.
These tenants cannot expect a LL to do that for no income.
MOST LL LL don't have spare cash to refurbish when receiving a pittancer of rental income.
So get real; pay the market rent and then the LL will refurb.
On regulated rent NOTHING will occur.
These tenants are living in a fantasy if they think a LL is going to subsidise their lifestyles.
they need to be realistic and pay market rent if they expect the LL to improve things.
This is why rented sector was in decline as nobody was making any money.
Thatcher introduced AST's which trasnsformed the rented sector.
These regulated tenants are living on a bygone era; no LL will refurb this property.

sam

1:21 AM, 12th July 2013
About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "andrew townshend" at "11/07/2013 - 19:05":

Not all regulated tenancies pay a low rent - I know all 3 of them who dont. May be thats why there is a rent officer to determine what 'Fair Rent' should be.

No void - of course its good to look at the bright side. May be its a good business model to reduce rent to same level as regulated rent so there is no void and no income to pay mortgage or repair and maintenance. Ever thought of trying it ?

sam

1:26 AM, 12th July 2013
About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Reader " at "11/07/2013 - 22:03":

Or try the greatest gift that democracies can bestow upon societies, freedom - the freedom to leave an accommodation where the landlord is mean and horrible to his tenants, who does not take his obligations seriously and is downright irresponsible.

sam

1:30 AM, 12th July 2013
About 5 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Paul Barrett" at "12/07/2013 - 00:39":

One good thing about a regulated tenancy is that they can be bought for a song or two. But for the original owner .... well, thats life in a benefits I-know-my-rights society.

Mark Alexander

7:47 AM, 12th July 2013
About 5 years ago

@Mike - have your parents considered approaching the landlord to see whether he might be interested in buying them out of their tenancy?

As a matter of interest, what EPC rating does the property have?

7:58 AM, 12th July 2013
About 5 years ago

Interesting point
What if a tenancy is regulated and the property does NOT meet the EPC E standard.
In 2016 tenants may request and it may not be reasonably refused to upgrade a property to E standard.
Say LL refuses and waits until 2018 when he will have to stop renting to these tenants as it will be illegal to do so if not to EPC E standard.
So tenants have to leave as LL is NO longer allowed to rent the property out and that includes regulated tenants because LL refuses to make the place letttable according to EPC standards.
He waits until tenants have vacated.
Applies for and has property improved to GD standard and rents out at a MARKET rent.
Bye Bye all regulated tenants in non EPC E standard rental property!!

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