Tag Archives: Damp

Your Good Tenant Month Stories Latest Articles

Congratulations to Roy for his winning story!

Mary Latham selected the Good Tenant Story because “People don’t have to do “big” things to be good tenants, all landlords really want is for their tenants to do as this family does. Its great that Roy recognises the fact that they are good tenants and I hope for both his sake and the tenants that they continue to be happy in their home for many years to come.”

Read Roy’s story

Martin Fletcher sent in -“My tenants are Serhiy and Magdalena. They are Poles and have two tiny sons. They somehow squeeze in to a two bedroomed maisonette in Ham.
The property had been luxuriously refurbished before they took up occupation in 2009.
They report every tiny problem by email, pay their rent by standing order, and are very pleasant.
When we have inspected the property it still(October) looks as if it was decorated last week.
They are a pleasure to know and I hope they stay, although I expect they’ll need somewhere larger soon.”

This one came in from Jonathan Clarke – “I am fortunate to own 5 properties in one particular street on one estate in Milton Keynes. One afternoon a fire started in the communal area of an open access area where 2 of my properties are situated. The fire took hold and the electric meters were burnt out. It continued up the stairwell and began melting the front of my two upvc front doors to my flats on the 1st floor. The hallway was engulfed in flames and the doors were the only exit route. One of my tenants was at the time in their flat with a friend who had her baby. They were trapped.

The Fire service was on route but time was of the essence. Other residents including my other tenants all rallied round to the rescue. It is a close knit community. A ladder was found and put up against the 1st floor window. Assistance was offered and given by my other tenants ( amongst others) to rescue my tenant her friend and her baby by climbing down the ladder. This was obviously at some considerable danger to themselves. The Fire service was yet to arrive. It was a successful rescue and thankfully apart from of the shock of it all no injuries were sustained.

I was driving down to the coast on a weekend break at the time and as I was driving I could not answer my phone. But such were the tenants in that street concern to let me know I received 20 missed calls in total from them. The aftermath was such that the flats were partially fire damaged and had no electric. One tenant was rehoused temporarily but one elected to stay put and I supplied emergency heating and lighting. At no time did either of them complain in the slightest about their obvious plight but just took it on the chin and knuckled down and got on with it.

So I would like to pay tribute to all my brilliant tenants on that day who helped with the rescue and who also pulled together afterwards supplying food, help and support where needed and for the two tenants directly affected. It was a difficult 8 week period for all before their accommodation could be returned to normal. It was a great example of my tenants who had little financial resources of their own pulling together in a crisis to help each other out.
I am proud of them all.”

Donald Holden sent in this one – I had to evict some tenants due to non-payment of rent. It went the whole way, right up to the bailiff. When I finally arrived with the bailiff I found they had left the night before and – this has got to be a first for England – they had cleaned the house. Spotless.

Martin from Van Huizen Enterprises sent – “it’s a nice idea for good tenants to get a mention, as there are a lot of good ones out there. Like rogue landlords, rogue tenants exist, it’s purely a matter of trying to avoid them!

Over the last 20 years, being the Landlord of four properties, I have only had to resort to court action once, and that is something I always remind myself of if any difficulties arise. On that one occasion, I was taken in by young tenants, who on the face of it, butter wouldn’t melt in their mouth. Wrong. Rule number one since, has always been not to have tenants under 25, as we all do a lot of growing up between the ages of 18 & 25. As a rule we always, despite the cost, obtain tenants through Agencies, as the toe-rags won’t generally want to be going through this filter if they can help it.

Apart from the one bad experience, we can truly say that 95+% of tenants have been very good, and many, as those we have at present, we would class as friends. Give people a nicely presented house, with a price which is considered fair, and most people will look after the property we find. The best tenants we have had, have generally come as a couple, and left as a family, as two bedrooms haven’t been enough!

We need Tenants, and Tenants need Landlords. It’s a business arrangement at the end of the day. Sermon over!”

This story of good tenants has been sent in from Michael Shannon of Shannon Agencies – “I follow a philosophy of “treat people the way you want to be treated!” and with my tenant Connie is has worked well.

Connie is a hard working child minder who rents a house of me in Belfast and has done for just over a year now. This is her first venture away from home and I appreciate her earnings are hard won and I respect her efforts to pay me a fair rental and on time. In return she should expect any problems fixed PDQ and professionally.

This year she has accommodated callers for an energy certificate, gas boiler service, loft insulation, a leaky water pipe that meant the kitchen floor being replaced and blocked sewage drain being dealt with.
Each time there surely was an element of cleaning required after workers had been to carry out their task.
Never has she complained or protested but has said thank you for dealing promptly with issues.

Having had this house from 1996 she is without doubt the best tenant I have had and I hope she chooses to stay for a long period.

I do hope she considers the house her home.

Hopefully I can bring Connie a bottle of champers and show my appreciation!”

Jack Craven sent in – “A couple of years ago I rented my own house for six months so I could go away for the winter,when I returned the tenants had cleaned the house top to bottom including having the carpets cleaned, on the kitchen table was a lovely letter of thanks a bottle of wine and a bunch of flowers.”

Terry Pearce sent in this story of a couple of tenants -“We have two properties that I rent out. For past two years we our tenant in the two bedroom flat has rented from us and I can’t praise her highly enough. She is Polish. She looks after the flat as if it were her own, on inspection visits (which are usually asked for by her!) I know the place will be immaculate before I even get there. On the very few occasions she has missed a rent due date (which is paid via standing order) she has called me to say she has paid the rent into our bank! She is a model tenant.

Our second property we let to the American Air Force and although they can take a few visits from me before they understand how the heating works, “what are these three coloured containers in the garage for?” and “What oil tank” “Does that go in your car” 🙂 Each tenant has been really good and appreciates the property and always cleans thoroughly when it’s time to go back to the US.”

Ian Kirk sent us this surprising story of some tenants of his – “I have an amusing story to tell about some past good tenants.

I had not carried out a routine check on one of my good, no hassle tenants for a few months so I called them and arranged to call in the following day. A quick look around the flat confirmed that all looked well kept. I was just about to leave when one of my Eastern European tenants said ” please could you let us know when the hot water will be on supply again? I said, Pardon? repeating their question! They again replied,” We want to know when we can have hot water again” I asked them to explain as it sounded incredible.

It turns out that unknown to the couple both the immersion heaters in the hot water cylinder had failed a couple of months ago and they had assumed that the hot water had been cut off for a couple of months. Apparently this is common practise in their country! Well we all know that any other tenants would have been jumping up and down to get the problem fixed the same day not two months!

I had to apologise for chuckling out loud when I was explaining how it is not the norm in this country. They were pleasantly surprised to have hot water “supplied” within a couple of days.”

Lynette Morris sent in this story of her good tenant – Gareth is my very good tenant. A man in his forties who had never lived away from home due to mild Aspergers Syndrome, he decided to make a launch for independence by renting my two bedroomed flat in Caernarfon. It had been refurbished and looked great and he feel in love with it. I couldn’t have a more caring thoughtful tenant. Without request he forwarded mail, replaced a kettle and iron when needed, tended the hanging baskets and kept the place like a new pin. It has been wonderful to see him grow in confidence in his new environment and take such pride in looking after my property….his home!

Roy has sent in this one- Out of 10 or so tenants over the years I have had one not so good – they were pains in the bum who complained about damp whilst keeping the heating on maximum and blocking all ventilation to the house off ( a Victorian semi of Norfolk Red brick construction) and the lack of a garden. The rest have been from the acceptable to excellent all of whom have stayed on for a minimum of one year – and all bar one have received housing benefit of some sort. Only once have I had to take money from a deposit and the tenant agreed, in fact asked if we could arrange this because of personal circumstances (a severely dis-abled new born). We didn’t charge her for labour and helped her move to her adapted council house.
My best tenants are a couple with two children who look after the house better than if it were there own, doing re-decorating and carpeting at their own expense. They trim the hedge for us and look after the garden and exterior of the property. Rent is early rather than late. And all they want is to stay there for a few years !!! I would love to give them the bottles and would add a box of sweets(big) for the children as well.

Water Damage the Biggest Costs to Landlords Cautionary Tales, HMO's & Student Lets, Landlords Insurance, Latest Articles, Lettings & Management

Leaky pipes and sinks cost the UK’s landlords £2million a day and over 9 billion litres of water a year, and accounts for a quarter of all insurance claims on flats, according to property insurance specialist Cadogan Keelan Westall.
Continue reading Water Damage the Biggest Costs to Landlords

**%£~%! Lettings Agents! Guest Articles, Guest Columns, HMO's & Student Lets

I know there’s been a lot of mud thrown at lettings agents over the years mainly due to their high charges, limited ability and the fact that most landlords think “anyone can do it”. However, I always gave them the benefit of the doubt as, alongside being a Dartford Tunnel toll booth attenda Continue reading **%£~%! Lettings Agents!

The Art of Wallpapering Guest Articles, Latest Articles

Whether you are wallpapering an entire room or just a feature wall, here are a few pointers.

It is quite straightforward to calculate how much wallpaper is required.

  1. Measure the height of room, either from ceiling to skirting, or picture rail to skirting for full walls. Add on the pattern repeat.
  2. Now measure right round the room. Check the width of the paper, most are generally 52 cm but some specialist papers will be wider width. Divide the width of the room by the width of the paper.  Now you know how many drops are required, ie pieces of wallpaper.
  3. Look at the wallpaper roll length. If you have measured 2.9 metres from ceiling to floor and need 31 drops, and your paper is 10 metre roll length- how many 2.90 pieces can you get from roll? In this case it is only 3 full pieces. 31 divided by 3 = 10.33333. So here you need 11 rolls. Some decorators may not require full repeat to work with, but better to be safe than sorry. Continue reading The Art of Wallpapering

Landlords in the front line in war against drugs Latest Articles

cannabis leaf in hand

Cannabis growers are a serious problem

Police, landlords and letting agents are in the front line of the fight against drugs in towns and cities across the UK.

Cannabis factories are a real problem in residential and commercial rental properties with a dozen or so raids a day on suspected growers.

To highlight the problem, here is a snapshot of cannabis related incidents that have all happened this week: Continue reading Landlords in the front line in war against drugs

House prices stuck in a rut for up to 10 years Latest Articles, Property Market News

Horse stuck in a holeHouse prices are stuck in a rut and are unlikely to recover to anywhere near pre-credit crunch prices any time soon – and perhaps not for a decade, according to new research.

Accountancy firm PricewaterhouseCoopers predicts prices will still languish 12% below the highs of 2007 in 2015 and reckons the chances of them rising above the previous peak in 2020 is just better than 50:50. Continue reading House prices stuck in a rut for up to 10 years

How to get your property portfolio off “death row” Cautionary Tales, Guest Articles, Latest Articles, Lettings & Management

Glen Ackroyd of National Property GroupWith interest rates at a historic low, guest article writer Glen Ackroyd from National Property Group explains the steps he’s taking to protect his buy to let property portfolio from inevitable interest rate rises and taking his portfolio off “death row”.

In September 2008 I was having what was supposed to be my dream holiday. Like many others, I had ridden the wave of the credit boom and had acquired a large property portfolio. At the height of my success I was staying in a private villa in an island in the Bahamas, fronting onto the harbour, with millionaires’ yachts and Hollywood film stars for neighbours. Surely, life just couldn’t get any better?

Continue reading How to get your property portfolio off “death row”

Why Shelter’s ‘rogue landlord’ complaints are misleading Latest Articles, Shelter

The media and do-gooders are quick to jump on the ‘rogue landlord’ bandwagon to answer the clarion call of rough justice for the less well off, but this support is not always justified.

Pressure groups and charities plug in to well-paid media professionals to hype their campaigns to grab headlines, and sometimes readers have to look behind the spin to find the real story. Continue reading Why Shelter’s ‘rogue landlord’ complaints are misleading

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