24 September 2010 by Yezdan Izzet

Obligated landlord …

A lease of a property governs the contractual relationship between landlord and tenant, but quite often some of the obligations of the landlord are overlooked particularly in buildings containing only a few flats where the danger is that the relationship starts to become “informal” with the parties acting how it suits them rather than how they are supposed to…

This can have consequences when things go wrong or a difference of opinion arises and the parties can suddenly find themselves faced with a breach!

We have set out below some landlords’ covenants (i.e. promises/obligations) that you can usually expect to find in a lease, although these do vary from one lease to another:

  • To allow the tenant to have “quiet enjoyment” of the property without any lawful interruption by the landlord. This is a broad provision and landlords can potentially find themselves in breach of this provision simply by failing to comply with another landlord’s obligation, for instance, carrying out repairs to the structure of the building or dealing with a leak. It is arguable that such breaches may interfere with a tenant’s enjoyment of a property.
  • To enforce any breaches by a tenant/occupier of another property in the building at the request of a tenant.
  • To maintain and keep in good repair the main structure/foundations of a building, common parts and any water pipes, gas pipes, electrical wires etc. which serve more than one flat in a building.
  • Decorate the exterior and common parts.
  • To insure the building.
  • There are also various obligations on a landlord relating to the collection of service charges some of which may not be contained in the lease but are statutory requirements. For more information on landlords’ obligations when dealing with service charges in respect of a long residential lease, please see our previous blog by clicking here: Services Charges: Striking a balance

Other statutory requirements extend to:

  • Energy Performance Certificates.
  • Fire Assessment Reports in respect of common parts of a building.
  • Tenancy Deposit Schemes (for rented properties.)
  • Gas Safety Testing.

It is not always easy to quantify loss or damage suffered by a tenant where the landlord has committed a breach, but in order to avoid being in a position where you are faced with litigation we urge you to seek legal advice when putting your landlord’s house in order! At the same time, if you are a tenant and your landlord is failing to meet these obligations do also seek legal advice…

13 September 2010 by Louise Dawson

Permitted Development

In 2008 the rules on “permitted development” (changes to your home which do not require planning permission) changed. There was guidance issued at this point however this was aimed at planning professionals rather than householders.

13 September 2010 by Nicki Iliffe

Crossrail update

In the current political and economic climate there is much speculation about which projects will go ahead.

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