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Great ‘How to haggle down rent’ Hunt

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in House Buying, Renting & Selling
148 replies 71.3K views
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  • madkitty wrote: »
    any thoughts on negotiating with an existing landlord - I have been in my house for 4 years now and 18 months of those with a new landlord and would be interested to see if I could knock a bit off of what I am paying but Im not too sure how to go about it. She is pretty useless anyway as she has never had the boiler serviced since she has taken over and I have asked a number of times for a huge pyracanthus to be cut back near the garage but to no avail!

    I would suggest writing to the landlord pointing out that the boiler hasn't been serviced and that for her own legal obligations it should be. Also that your requests to have the overgrown plants trimmed have been ignored.

    Then say that if she cannot meet these reasonable requests that, for your own safety (from a potentially faulty boiler) you will have to consider seeking alternative accommodation etc. That should at least get the work done.

    As for negotiating your rent down, well I'm not so sure about that one. Have they put the rent up at all in the last 4 years?
  • I'm not sure that trimming plants is the Landlords responsibility!

    You'll be wanting the washing up done next....:D
  • We achieved a lower rent by e-mailing our landlord links to various properties in our area recently, showing the current rental values had fallen since we moved in (and some were in better condition). The landlord took those on board and initially was not going to budge, however we pointed out that in all the time we have been there rent has been paid on time, the property has been maintained and they have had no issues whatsoever as we are good tenants.

    If we had chosen to move due to another landlord offering cheaper rent, our current landlord would have possibly suffered a month with no occupancy and, more worryingly, a possibly unreliable tenant coming in.

    In these times of a bird in the hand being better than 2 in the bush, our rent has been reduced (actually by more than we had put forward) and it's all been very mutual and both sides have benefitted - us with a lower rent to help offset rising bills (and no payrises) and the landlord with solid dependable tenants, during uncertain times.

    It's not something I have ever done before but local prices are lowering and it affects both sides of the fence.
    MFW #185
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  • sarastark86sarastark86 Users Awaiting Email Confirmation
    45 posts
    We knocked our rent down from £575 to £500 because they were advertising that the place came with permit parking but when we contacted the council they said it didn't and that a permit for the public car park next door would be £85 a month. We wanted the place but told the agency that the most we could afford was £500 due to parking charges. The place was empty so they accepted straight away. It then turned out that the car park next door was free 6pm-8am Mon-Fri so we didn't need a permit after all! So we're saving £75 a month. And they never checked whether we actually had a car anyway. Fairly specific circumstances but definitely worth a try if the property doesn't come with parking.
    what do you mean, I have to pay back my student loan?!?
  • loveandlightloveandlight Forumite
    1.2K posts
    500 Posts
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    posted by madkitty
    any thoughts on negotiating with an existing landlord - I have been in my house for 4 years now and 18 months of those with a new landlord and would be interested to see if I could knock a bit off of what I am paying but Im not too sure how to go about it. She is pretty useless anyway as she has never had the boiler serviced since she has taken over and I have asked a number of times for a huge pyracanthus to be cut back near the garage but to no avail!

    So your complaints against your landlord have nothing to do with them being genuine but more as an excuse to get the rent reduced!

    Threads like this although are supposed to be tips to empower the tenant will serve no real purpose other than to encourage a lot of tenants to abuse the rules & regs and will serve no real purpose than to irritate a lot of decent landlords.

    I really appreciate this thread because it empowers me now as a recent landlord myself as it shows me all the strategies that tenants use to try and get off paying their rent or get it reduced. It's my property so any tenant lives by my rental terms. If they don't like them then they can move on.

    I am a very fair person but if I get a tenant trying to pull a fast one with me or be a demanding tenant then I won't bother being reasonable anymore. I won't argue or spend any time trying to sort the situation out. I will just serve a notice to vacate and have nothing more to do with them. It works both ways you know!
  • We rented our flat over a year ago when there weren't so many flats spare in Liverpool and demand was higher, we successfully negotiated the rent down from £750 per month to £675 for a penthouse flat over looking albert docks, plus we got them to fully furnish it. The only landlord condition was that we sgn a contract lockingus in for 9 months, we could have go the rent cheaper if we'd signed a longer contract I reckon!

    But anyway, if you dont ask you dont get, and if we managed to do it when there was more demand, it shouldnt be too hard to do it now. It's also easier to reduce the rent if you either deal directly with the landlord or a less popular letting agency (our primarily deals with commercial premesis so they're used to haggling and also not many people would check them out for a domestic property.).

    My only other tip is make sure you're dealing with someone who has the authority to reduce the price, and make sure they actually call the landlord if it's a letting agency, some just say no automatically because they get more bonus if they let properties for higher.

    But in Lverpool now, I think you should never pay the list price!
    Money burns a hole in my pocket, but I'm trying to be good!!
    :confused: :grouphug: :A
  • So your complaints against your landlord have nothing to do with them being genuine but more as an excuse to get the rent reduced!

    Threads like this although are supposed to be tips to empower the tenant will serve no real purpose other than to encourage a lot of tenants to abuse the rules & regs and will serve no real purpose than to irritate a lot of landlords.

    I really appreciate this thread because it empowers me now as a recent landlord myself as it shows me all the strategies that tenants use to try and get off paying their rent or get it reduced. It's my property so any tenant lives by my rental terms. If they don't like them then they can move on.

    I am a very fair person but if I get a tenant trying to pull a fast one with me or be a demanding tenant then I won't bother being reasonable anymore. I won't argue or spend any time trying to sort the situation out. I will just serve a notice to vacate and have nothing more to do with them. It works both ways you know!

    Im sorry but they are genuine - it is the legal responsibility of the landlord to make sure that the boiler is fully maintained and serviced and also according to my contract that the bushes are kept in order...im not throwing away £700 per month for the fun of it and so any minor issues should be resolved! Do you not think that perhaps the reason I have been in the same property for so long is because I am a good tenant!
  • madkitty wrote: »
    any thoughts on negotiating with an existing landlord - I have been in my house for 4 years now and 18 months of those with a new landlord and would be interested to see if I could knock a bit off of what I am paying but Im not too sure how to go about it. She is pretty useless anyway as she has never had the boiler serviced since she has taken over and I have asked a number of times for a huge pyracanthus to be cut back near the garage but to no avail!
    madkitty- offer to renegotiate your contract, look on rightmove etc to see prices for similar properties, use this as evidence. You may have to sign a fixed term contract to entice your landlord to drop the rent, after all point out to them that you are a relible tenant and they are guaranteed rent for the duration of the fixed term-and that's very important right now!!
    Money burns a hole in my pocket, but I'm trying to be good!!
    :confused: :grouphug: :A

  • I really appreciate this thread because it empowers me now as a recent landlord myself as it shows me all the strategies that tenants use to try and get off paying their rent or get it reduced. It's my property so any tenant lives by my rental terms. If they don't like them then they can move on.

    Not quite - many rental terms that landlords include are not actually legally enforceable.

    MSE are to be commended for this. I don't understand why some people (usually landlords, admittedly) think it's fine for people to find the cheapest utility company, phone up Sky/Virgin/your mobile provider and bargain for a better contract but as soon as it comes to negotiating rent all tenants are trying to pull a fast one. Being a landlord is a business, just like any other, and renting is just a utility that puts a roof over your head. So landlords, by all means storm off in a huff because you think tenants are taking the mickey - it's not like there's a shortage of rental properties at the moment...*

    Anyway, back to the point - we've found that pointing out what other similar properties are going for in the area, combined with the fact we are known good tenants is generally good for either no increase or a decrease in rent. Recently we've pointed out that if the agency wished to remarket the flat they would have to pay for an energy certificate thing as well, adding to their costs.

    *Disclaimer: I know that some tenants treat properties badly/don't pay rent, but them's the breaks, as they say. It's part and parcel of the landlord business, and if your business can't cope with such events, you are doing it wrong!
  • GingernutmegGingernutmeg Forumite
    3.5K posts
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    chiny wrote: »
    Interesting that MSE takes one side; exactly how is arguing to pay less rent, money saving for the other half of us.

    My tenants usually stay 2 - 5 years because the flats are better than others around and looked after, by me. The idea that tenants might do gardening is laughable :rotfl: Tenants can be lazy, even at their own expense (not reporting a fault for me to fix) - I guess zero effort required is a good reason for renting.

    Are posters sure they want to make notoriously fraught relationships more combative ?

    As a tenant, I find your attitude really offensive. I rent, and I DO garden - in fact, my house is the only one on the street with a tidy front garden, window boxes and pots of flowers, none of which were provided by my landlord (who, incidentally, is delighted at the state of her property). The back garden is tidy and weed-free, and I've even added a few plants at my own expense. I also do small maintenance jobs so as not to bother the landlord - this weeked I fixed a couple of loose tiles and some broken grouting in the shower, for example. A tiny, cheaply and easily done job which would have caused problems if left but didn't need the expense of anyone in to do it. That's how I think tenants should behave, and I'm happy to do that. I'm not happy to be thought of as 'lazy, or putting in 'zero effort' - in my experience, those statements could equally be applied to lots of landlords and letting agents. Of course I report faults and problems as and when they occur, but again, in my experience, the lack of response usually isn't because a tenant hasn't reported a problem.

    Oh, and that's my tip for getting the rent reduced, or at least for getting the rent to remain the same when it comes to contract renewal - look after the property, and generally landlords will be happier to look sensibly at the finances to keep a good tenant. I would have thought that keeping a 'good' tenant is one of the most moneysaving things a landlord can do?

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