Deposits and Tenancy Deposit Schemes (England) | Nuisance and Anti-social Behaviour (England) | Responsibilities and Liabilities (England) | Tenant Obligations (England)

Property damage

7 Apr 2017 | 2 comments

Recent inspections have shown damage by the tenant:

Burns to kitchen units and worktops
Water damage to bath panel and floor
Stains on carpets
Every blind in the property broken
Every drawer in the kitchen broken
The whole property dirty and smelling of curry.

The letting agent sent letters asking the tenant to ‘try to avoid further damage’ but insists that I have to wait until the tenancy ends to try to get money from the deposit towards refurb (which isn’t likely to cover the cost of refurb) and then pursue through the court (I believe it will be hard to find the tenant when they move on).

I’m not keen to give the tenant notice at the moment as I’m not going to be able to organise a refurb for nearly a year. The tenants are a family who have been there for 3 years.

Is there anything I can do to protect my position or get the tenant to pay to fix the damage now?

The agent puts the damage down to ‘cultural issues’ because the tenant refuses to grasp how to cook without damaging an indoor kitchen and the expectation of cleaning carpets etc

Extractor fans were fitted and the tenant was given leaflets about preventing condensation, using the dishwasher etc but they still leave unwashed pans soaking in water, all their laundry on radiators etc so I feel they are not going to take on board any requests to treat the property carefully.

Presumably it’s not worth insisting on redoing the kitchen etc as the tenant would just damage it again and its hard to see what more damage they could do given I’m already imagining having to replace the kitchen, the blinds and all the carpets and furniture?

Any other suggestions?



  1. guildy

    This is an unfortunate reality of renting.

    I agree that there isn’t much point in attempting to restore any of the items now because it will just get damaged again.

    Also, claiming money now would be difficult because there will be likely more damage by the time they have gone so you could end up duplicating claims which could be complex.

    We have a number of tenants personally where the same thing is happening. In that case what we do is ensure they are always the first to have the rent increased (but not by too much that they leave). That way, you can think in your mind that they are paying for the refurb when ordinarily if they hadn’t damaged, you probably wouldn’t have put up the rent at that time.

    If they decide to leave at the point of rent increase then you haven’t lost much because you’ve stopped the damage getting worse.

    • Cobalt

      Thank you. A rent increase would at least make me feel a bit better about it! I will ask the agent.

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