Who is responsible for the Tenants rubbish?

by Readers Question

14:24 PM, 13th June 2013
About 8 years ago

Who is responsible for the Tenants rubbish?

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Who is responsible for the Tenants rubbish?

Who is responsible for the Tenants rubbishI have a Housing Benefit tenant who bags up her domestic rubbish and then throws it into the back yard of the property to join the old three piece suite in there as well.

Despite my numerous requests to desist this behaviour she persists in doing this.

As a last resort I reported the situation to the local Council who promptly sent an Environmental Officer to examine the back yard.

I then received an official notice holding me, as the owner of the property, responsible for the rubbish. I was given seven days to clear the mess up or the Council will do it and send me the bill. They are citing the “Prevention of Damage by Pests Act 1949 Section 4” as their authority to take this action.

I arranged for all the rubbish to be removed and paid the Local Council £18 to collect the three piece suite. Unfortunately as they are so busy they could not attend for four weeks.

Two weeks after making this payment I have received another seven day notice to remove the three piece suite. These Departments obviously do not communicate with each other.

My questions are-: As the owner of the property am I responsible for the tenants rubbish? My tenancy agreement clearly states that I am not. And, secondly, am I the correct person on whom the notice should be served.?

My fear would be that if I am found to be legally responsible for this situation its only a small step away from Utility Companies finding me responsible for all the unpaid bills accumulated during a tenancy. 

Thanks – Tom Doolin

EDITORS NOTE

Check out this video – different landlord, same problem. Thanks to Mick Roberts – Property118 Member for allowing us to use this video.


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Comments

Sally T

22:44 PM, 15th June 2013
About 8 years ago

Unfortunately it's not Landlords that give HB tenants a bad name, but the tenants themselves, we don't take them anymore as they end up costing us to much money.
I also agree with Paul B, we wouldn't be without our Trusty Transit !!!

r01

11:40 AM, 16th June 2013
About 8 years ago

All property owners are ultimately responsible for their own property and everything that happens on it as well as all nuisance that is caused by their tenants. I take my responsibilities very seriously and regularly inspect my properties personally, insisting all matters are put right within 7 -14 days (depending on the problem), or it's an immediate eviction. My tenants respect this because they know not only they, but a problem neighbour is sorted out immediately and they don't need to keep moving to get away from the feckless.
My advice to Tom is as follows:

1 Never, ever, ever involve the council in anything to do with a HB tenant dispute. They always stand up for the tenant, in fact if you try to evict the tenant they will do everything in their power, including paying for the tenants representation at court to frustrate the eviction process.

2 Notify your tenant in writing that having failed to comply with your earlier requirements you are immediately appointing a private contractor to remove all rubbish and will forward the bill for immediate payment and if payment is not received within 14 days will take this from the deposit which must then be restored within 30 days, failing which you reserve the right to commence recovery action and/or eviction.

Forget your tenant for a moment and ask "how would I feel living next door to this dirty, filthy garden". Be a responsible landlord and clear it at your own expense then sort out who pays afterward.

3 Send the bill to your tenant and follow up exactly as you state - don't delay or re-think because tenants need to know exactly where they stand and if you back off now they know you will in the future.

4 Don't allow the PC brigade like Gary Chase to talk to you like he did. There is absolutely nothing wrong with stating the tenant is a HB tenant because you have simply stating a fact. You didn't say anything insulting or derogatory at all and if idiots like Gary Chase want to interpret the facts in some silly, childish PC way it is they who have the problem - not you.

When I read Gary Chase's comments my immediate thought was one of please let us know which agency you are with so we may exercise our democratic right to avoid you like the plague. These are the same people I find that use the racists card when it's perfectly sensible if you want to reduce risk to refuse a tenant from a foreign land that has no work (or even the right to do so) or credit history in the UK.

The fact is in more than 20 years of letting, the ONLY problem I have ever had with a tenant is one that was being paid for entirely by me and you as tax payers. Talk about biting the hand that feeds you...... Hey Gary, I managed to say that without mentioning the words housing and benefit.......

Yes, I feel very sorry for those decent HB tenants that I and other responsible landlords won't take on. I find that not only do landlords find HB tenants in general a problem, but insurance companies do too - my landlord's policy won't cover them, I wonder why ???

R

Joe Bloggs

14:06 PM, 16th June 2013
About 8 years ago

it is odd but the only HB tenancy we have ever done out of 100 plus over 14 years resulted in us needing to get a skip for the rubbish. never had to do that before or since. dont understand the allure of being a HB landlord. never again.

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