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Is my Land Lord Behaving Reasonably?

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in House Buying, Renting & Selling
22 replies 2.6K views
Wiltshire_HamWiltshire_Ham Forumite
4 Posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in House Buying, Renting & Selling
Hello everyone.

I hope that no one objects to me joining just to ask for some expert advice, but I have a question about my tenancy, and where precisely I stand:

I rent a small rural property in Wiltshire, and have lived at my current address for about 5 years on a standard assured shorthold tenancy. The property was advertised and let via an agent, but is land lord managed

When I first rented the property, it was advertised (through an agency) as having a large double garage, which sure enough it did.

Recently, my land lady has instructed me to move my belongings (including two vehicles) from the garage as she now wishes to use it to store her own belongings. I have done as she wishes, but I am a little peeved.

The tenancy agreement (a bog-standard assured shorthold one) makes no mention of the garage specifically, but the property inventory does: "large double garage for use by tenants if required".

Well, I do require it! And I am concerned that because it features on the inventory, and because the property was advertised as coming with a garage, my total rent was calculated based upon the property including the garage.

I would be very grateful for any thoughts on this matter, and how I would be best to proceed with this. Has the land lord behaved reasonably? am I paying a rent element on the garage, or does the phrase "for use by tenants if required" imply that the garage is gratis..?

Many, many thanks in advance...
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Replies

  • ReueReue Forumite
    569 Posts
    Should have left your cars in the garage. If she hasnt parked anything in there yet, go put them back in :)
  • Thanks for the swift reply!

    In retrospect, you're right, I probably should have sought advice first; but because she asked me to vacate I just did what she said. My car, and my old Land Rover, now park outside and the garage is filled with crates and crates of 'stuff' (my land lord sold her 'other' property in London recently and has no room in her 'main house' for all the furniture etc.).

    I have since rented another garage in the village to store all my other workshop tools and equipment (hobby not trade).

    I still have a few garden tools in the garage (because I want them to hand but kept under lock and key) but she has made it quite clear that she does not like me entering the garage at all anymore.

    The garage is huge - you could easily fit four vehicles in there - and to be honest, it was the garage that really swung it for me when I decided to rent the property. That's the main reason why I feel a bit miffed.
  • lincroft1710lincroft1710 Forumite
    14.8K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper
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    Politely ask for a rent reduction, providing there has been a rent increase at least once during your tenancy.
  • Try discussing it with her and say it's a dealbreaker for you? Because even if there is space to park the vehicles somewhere on the property, it will still affect your insurance and therefore incur costs to you as well as the fact one of the reasons you selected the property was for the garage. You've been living there a long time so if you're a good tenant it wouldn't hurt to discuss it with her.
  • Tell her in the nicest way possible to get lost. If the inventory states that you can use the garage well then its yours to use.
    Let her try taking you to court over it, she wouldn't have a leg to stand on.
  • agrinnallagrinnall
    23.3K Posts
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    Tell her that you will rent the garage space to her for whatever you feel is a suitable sum. If what you really want is the garage back for your own use, then perhaps find out what a long term storage facility would charge for the same space and set your price a bit higher.
  • Prothet_of_DoomProthet_of_Doom Forumite
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    I wouldn't have moved anything to start with.
  • Mulder00Mulder00 Forumite
    507 Posts
    Seventh Anniversary 100 Posts
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    I really think that is being unfair and unreasonable, you've been there for 5 years!!
  • edited 31 October 2013 at 5:35PM
    Shas21Shas21 Forumite
    24 Posts
    edited 31 October 2013 at 5:35PM
    I agree with others posting here, I think your land lord is being unreasonable.
    You should definately ask for a reduction in rent given that it says in the property inventory does: "large double garage for use by tenants if required"; and personally I would be inclined to make her aware of the contents of the contract.
    I would have thought (although I am not a legal eagle and do not take as gospel) that she is in breach of the contact.
    It might be best to seek proper legal advice on what you can do about this, because the last thing you want to do is get your Land Lord's back up and jeopardise your future tenancy.
    Good Luck
  • TBagpussTBagpuss Forumite
    9.1K Posts
    Tenth Anniversary 1,000 Posts Name Dropper
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    I agree,. while you are the tenant, the property is yours to use. If she wants to alter the tenancy from one for a house with a large garage to one for a house with no garage then she can negotiate with you to achieve that, but I would expect it to involve a rent reduction.

    In the first instance, it may be worth contacting her to say that you were willing to accommodate her temporariliy but that you do need the garage and as it forms part of the property you are renting you would like it returned to your use.

    As an alternative you could offer to let her continue to use it on the basis that she pays for you to rent alternative storage and garage space elsewhere.

    I think that if the garages and house are all on one plot of land tenit would normally be assumed to be part of what you are renting unless it is specifically excluded, but do get some proper legal advice before doing anything drastic!
    All posts are my personal opinion, not formal advice Always get proper, professional advice (particularly about anything legal!)
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