By using this website, you agree to our use of cookies to enhance your experience.

"Almost one-in-10 landlords in tenancy disputes" - claimJust under 10 per cent of landlords experienced a tenant dispute in 2014 with two thirds opting to settle them in court according to a study of 500 investment property owners.

In 58 per cent of the disputes the main cause was damage to property, followed by disagreements over decoration (51 per cent) and cleaning and rent arrears (each on 42 per cent).

My Property Inventories, the firm that commissioned the survey, claims that some landlords are losing disputes because they cannot provide appropriate evidence to show that a tenant has, for example, damaged a property.

For example, some landlords are failing to put a letting contract in place, or they have very unfair clauses in the contact. Other landlords don't conduct an adequate check-in and check-out, or don't keep copies of correspondence with the tenant which could be evidence in a dispute says the firm's director, Danny Zane.

He claims that tenants in such disputes are usually aware that they have caused actual damage and will try to hide it.

If landlords have a thorough and detailed inventory, it will enable both parties to be treated fairly and reasonably. By opening a dialogue with tenants and using an independent inventory clerk, disputes can be resolved quicker and without the hassle that is often experienced at the end of a tenancy period he says.

He says professionals compiling an inventory would, for example, take dated' photographs of the garden, of the interior of the shed or garage, of the inside of the oven and of keys handed over to tenants - these are the main areas of problems that occur and are often down to misinterpretation at the end of a tenancy.

He also urges letting agents or landlords to carry out a full check-in where an inventory clerk checks through every line of the inventory, ensuring any amendments are agreed by and signed for, by the tenant at the end.


  • icon

    This is another one of those, "So What" articles. Many landlords have considerable numbers of properties. Maybe even one in ten. It is very likely that at any one time each of these one in ten landlords will have just one ongoing dispute and just as likely that a major landlord will have two or three disputes ongoing.

    The figure you need for heading this article is is the one where you tell us how many of the tenants in the UK are in dispute with their landlord. I bet it is far less than 1% and not the 10% your title is intimating with sloppy journalism.

    • 15 December 2014 14:19 PM
  • icon

    Ever since the invention of video cameras we have carried out video inventories of our properties before the Tenant takes occupation (we have been running 25 years now).

    The Tenant gets a copy (on DVD these days) and is told (in writing) to check it and sign that they agree it was a fair representation of the condition of the property. If anything was missed then we go back to film it and re-issue the DVD to the Tenant.

    We also film the property when they move out at the final inspection and provide a copy of the DVD to the Tenant with our final inspection report. We have NEVER lost a DPS dispute which relates to dilapidation.

    In fact one arbitrator commented in his adjudication report that he had never been presented with such strong evidence in all his years of arbitrating.

    My advice to any letting agent is to invest in the technology and time to use [b]video inventories[/b] rather than paper ones which are always open to some level of interpretation. It really pays off by saving time dealing with time consuming disputes.

    • 15 December 2014 07:00 AM
MovePal MovePal MovePal