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sammersmith

Inspections are too frequent

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I've been renting a flat for just over a year and in that time I've had two standard inspections to check condition and now the agent wants me to allow a valuer to have access so the landlord can remortgage. 

The calendar looks like this: 

Move in: 16/06/17
Inspection: 12/12/17
Inspection: 15/07/18
Mortgage valuation: 24/07/18

I hate inspections with a passion but they've always been limited to one per year in my previous rentals. Twice per year feels excessive and three times per year each time the landlord needs to move to a new 2 year fix seems to be taking the p. 

Is there any clause / guidelines on how frequent is too frequent to be bothering the tenant with inspections? Does requiring the tenant to be afforded peaceful enjoyment not count? None of these visits benefits me but their tone seems to be that it's expected that I let them in whenever. 

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There are no hard and fast rules about how often is excessive when it comes to inspecting the condition of the property. You say you derive no benefit from the inspections, but bear in mind that it is in the interest of both landlord and tenant to ensure that the property is kept in good repair. It is better to have a landlord/agent inspecting at reasonable regular intervals than not at all. Personally, I would not regard twice a year as excessive. I have tried to find what the RICS recommend as good practice, but Googling has not thrown anything up. I did though find that the law in Australia considers once every three months acceptable. The Landlord Law Blog https://landlordlawblog.co.uk/2017/06/21/tenancy-agreements-33-days-tips-day-24-inspections/ considers every three months to be about right.

Mortgage valutations are in a different category and a tenant can decline to allow them if not provided for in the terms of the tenancy.

It is annoying when agents adopt a peremptory tone. Agents should realise it can be counter-productive.

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I've been at the same place a few years now and they do inspections every 6 months. The ******* never fix anything we report. It's just for the landlord / letting agent to check if we've trashed it or not. If I'm in and ask questions the person doing the inspection always says 'I'm not sure, I'm just a contractor' etc etc.

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Inspections every 3 months would drive me insane so I'm thankful that I don't live in Australia 😀

Honestly, i don't see how an inspection is a benefit to me. If there's an issue with the flat then i'll report it. I don't need someone lording it around my flat like parents checking a kids bedroom. 

During the inspection they take pictures in every room and the only thing they check that could be seen as a benefit to me is the fire alarm, though i guess they only do this because they don't want to get fined for carelessness by renting an unsafe property. 

I suspect the real driver for inspections is coming from an agent's desire to cream a fee from landlords. In my previous flat an inspection always occurred immediately before a rent increase to reflect, in their words, "the strong demand in the area for your property". 

New place doesn't do an inspection as precursor to rent being bumped, but it still means i have to take time off work and it's inconvenient to stay at home etc. I pay the rent and bills so why can't they just leave me the f alone? 

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45 minutes ago, sammersmith said:

😀

I suspect the real driver for inspections is coming from an agent's desire to cream a fee from landlords. In my previous flat an inspection always occurred immediately before a rent increase to reflect, in their words, "the strong demand in the area for your property".

I have long felt that they only really benefit agents.  Can you imagine the outrage if Banks and Building Societies inspected their properties every 6 months, or even 10 years!

Its always worth remembering that in the UK, people who rent are third class citizens.  For proof just check your credit report, it doesn't matter how much you have in the bank or in other investments, if you don't 'own' a property you will never have a perfect credit score..

Edited by dougless

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I don't get any benefits from inspections and my LL is not interested in keeping the place in good order. When we moved in I highlighted faults on the inventory and then again with the agent during the first inspection. They were not acted on until a year later after further inspections and complaints.

My guess is that the agent is getting paid to do this or it is part of their agreement with the LL. A friend who does rent out a house is getting charged by the agent for each inspection. It comes of the rent (paid to agent and then to LL) and she gets a statement every quarter. 

I've also heard that inspections can be a clause in BTL mortgage agreements?

 

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8 hours ago, dougless said:

Can you imagine the outrage if Banks and Building Societies inspected their properties every 6 months, or even 10 years!

This is what always irritates me. Inspections feel like a means for the agent and LL to remind me whose in charge: "Do what we say or Section 21 for you"

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6 hours ago, Flopsy said:

I've also heard that inspections can be a clause in BTL mortgage agreements?

I had not considered that. I couldn't find anything online about this, except for a requirement for electricity and gas safety checks to be performed annually. In my (many) years of renting and numerous inspections, no one has ever checked the electrics or gas. They are however very concerned about Blutac marks on the walls. 

I decided to bite the bullet and let them in for a valuation as I'm now actually more interested in what they value this place at. LL brought off-plan for £198,000 in 2016 and basic yield calculator (no account of service charge, etc) puts my rent at 4.73% which is pretty awful for outside of London. I would not be surprised if flat was now valued at £150,000 - 160,000

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I agree that some landlords and agents treat tenants as third class citizens and ride roughshod over them.

I can understand the view that inspections are of no benefit if they are not followed up by carrying out repairs revealed by the inspection. If that happens ask why they are bothering to inspect. Remember aslo that you can complain to your local council if the landlord is not carrying out repairs.

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On 30/07/2018 at 11:57, Damocles said:

Remember aslo that you can complain to your local council if the landlord is not carrying out repairs.

There's really nothing wrong with the place I'm living now and if there was I would call them and ask them to fix it. I've no doubt the agent/landlord would agree to fix any issue I raised. This isn't the problem. The problem is they're inspecting the flat for their own benefit to ensure that i'm not damaging their investment. If the inspection was for my benefit then why can't they trust me to raise issues if and when they occur, like any other consumer / service provider model. 

With regards to the Inspection. A valuation was booked for this morning 0830 - 0930 after being confirmed yesterday. Sitting here off work waiting for the surveyor and they call at 0845 to say that the inspection is on hold and they may call back to rearrange. They are taking the p. and I won't wait around for them again. I was waiting for the lettings fees ban to move, so that i didn't have to swallow a checkout/checkin etc etc. fee, but I suspect that has been shelved so may have to take the hit and move somewhere else. 

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On 01/08/2018 at 09:03, sammersmith said:

With regards to the Inspection. A valuation was booked for this morning 0830 - 0930 after being confirmed yesterday. Sitting here off work waiting for the surveyor and they call at 0845 to say that the inspection is on hold and they may call back to rearrange. They are taking the p. and I won't wait around for them again. I was waiting for the lettings fees ban to move, so that i didn't have to swallow a checkout/checkin etc etc. fee, but I suspect that has been shelved so may have to take the hit and move somewhere else. 

With anything like that if I've had to book time off work and they try to rearrange I usually give them "can't do, that was the only time I could take off". It often suddenly becomes possible to fit in after all.

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  • 301 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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