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Agency NOT conducting Property Inspections


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I changed Letting Agents over 12 months ago as Inspections and Gas Safety was not being done on time. With the new Agency, as part of their 'Full Management' service they are supposed to conduct an inspection every 4 months (3 times a year). In the last year, I have only had 2 inspection Reports.

 

The next inspection is 2 months overdue. It was overdue last time, when I challenged them about this - they claimed that it very difficult to schedule an Inspection with the tenant, before 5pm, as he works shifts.

 

Should I be chasing up Agents, with "Full Management" service, every 6 months? Is this normal? Can anything be done?

 

I have already changed Agents once. I am reluctant to change again, as the impression I get is that agencies are just interested in collecting a monthly fee and do not care about the condition of the property!

 

Any responses, would be most appreciated. Thanks.

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With the agents I've used in the past, both had carried out 3 checks in the first year and if the AST is extended, they then carried out an inspection every 6months.

 

I believe at one point each also did an inspection when the tenants were out.  I think 1 supplied 14 days notice and the other 10 days notice of a planned inspection and when times and dates couldn't be agreed, 1 was due to awkward tenant and the other was similar as mentioned above due to shiftwork, the agent advised that as they'd given adequate notice they will carry out the inspection as per the details in the signed AST.

 

I'd keep hassling the agent.  They aren't carrying out their side of your contract, tell them that it is now 6 months overdue and this isn't what you agreed to when you signed the contract with them (and obviously check that contract to see what it says about inspections)!

 

Good luck! 

TPH-Chris-Barnard.jpg

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Thanks Barny, this was very useful.

 

The AST states:

"The Landlord has the right to enter the Property by giving the tenant no less than 24 hours notice for the following purposes:

9.1.1 to inspect condition and state of repair of the Property and, to confirm the performance by the Tenant of the Tenant's obligations under this Tenancy."

 

According to the 'Status Disclosure and Terms of Engagement' document from the Agency, it states:

"As part of the 'Letting and Full Management' service: (we will) conduct property visits/inspections every 3 months (where possible)."

 

It has been 6 months since the last inspection (5th October 2016).

 

 

Barny - do you have any advice, in terms of how to approach the Agency?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

A tenant can make it very difficult for a landlord or agent to physically gain access to a property despite what is says in the tenancy agreement.  Your agent may genuinely not be able to gain access but I would have expected them to notify you of this fact rather than you chase it.  Remember also that while you have a legal right it can be difficult to enforce and if you go in anyway you can open yourself to counter claim from the tenant who can invent damage or "missing items" which can become stressful/ nasty as it is difficult to prove your innocence.  I have known tenants leave money  & other valuables lying around almost provocatively.

The agent would hopefully be trying to negotiate with the tenant a suitable time to visit as most have days off etc.  If you are worried about the situation the only real sanction you have is to bring the tenancy to an end via Section 21 notice and start again. The tenant may not like the intrusion but it is part of renting that this goes on.  I always explain that we are not trying to spy on the tenant but are monitoring the general wear and tear of the property etc.  IF you have good tenants with a track record of looking after the property and paying the rent on time I also think that it is reasonable for 6 monthly visits as they would tell you if maintenance is needed.

Try and look at it from the other person's view point as well and have empathy for their circumstances - they may be having to work v hard to earn money to live and cannot afford to take time off for unnecessary visits - they to however, need to be educated and encouraged to comply with the terms of their agreement

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Thanks Tim for this thorough response.

 

I agree, the Agency should be notifying/updating me on the situation. I shouldn't have to chase this up every time. The rent is paid on time, however in this instance, it has been 7 months and I have not heard anything about the condition of the property.

 

The Agents are taking a "Full Management" fee and therefore I think it is reasonable to get an Inspection at least every 6 months.

As this is not happening, I am concerned that they collect the "Full" rate but in return I only receive:

  • Rent collection
  • Gas safety
  • Deposit protection

This is a frustrating situation. I am contemplating either managing the property myself or selling the property!

 

Thanks to all for your responses.

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