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Almost half of landlords have fallen out with tenants, but why?

A growing number of tenants and landlords are falling out over a range of issues, from cleaning and maintenance duties, to matters relating to decorating and home improvements, new findings have shown.

Research published by lighting experts, Lightbulbs Direct, has revealed that the truth behind the overwhelming majority of landlord and tenant disputes, with almost half - 49% - of UK tenants admitting that they have fallen out or argued that their landlord in the past.

The study suggests that 89% of people would consider moving out of their home if they did not have a good relationship with their landlord and 18% of tenants described their landlord as being unapproachable.


The research found that the top five reasons for calling landlords are to fix a damaged window (66%), seek consent to decorate (49%), regarding broken appliances (46%), unblock a plug or toilet, clean a dirty property (33%).

Some of the most unusual reasons for tenants calling their landlord were found to be; to ask for help when hanging photos and wall art (16%), to tighten the screws on a doorframe (8%) and to ask for help moving furniture around the property (7%).

Younger people are more likely to have a disagreement and fall with their landlord. The research discovered that 65% of 18 to 24 year olds and 66% of 25 to 34 year olds have argued with their landlord in the past, compared with 36% of 55 to 64 year olds and 34% of people aged 65 and above.

With every difficult landlord often comes a challenging tenant. The research also revealed that 24% of tenants surveyed had missed a rental payment in the past.

Those over 65 years old are also less likely to have missed a rental payment too (5%) in comparison to 44% of those between the ages of 25 to 34 years.

David Tetlow, ecommerce manager at Lightbulbs Direct, said: “Whether you’ve been searching for ages or it was love at first sight, discovering the perfect property is often hard to find. When it comes to renting, it’s easy to be persuaded by your dream home but finding out who your landlord is before you sign a tenancy agreement is extremely important and will help you to understand how approachable they’re going to be in a crisis.

“You should always take the time to research and understand your rights as a tenant and your landlord’s rights to avoid any difficult situations in the future too.”

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    I have been a landlord for 20 years and have had the odd tenant who is overly demanding. I have had demands to send someone round to change a light bulb, 7 o'clock wake up calls on Sunday mornings because the freezer compartment flap on a fridge doesn't close (not defrosting for a year will do that for you) and various unauthorised attempts at re-decorating because the tenant did not feel sufficiently stimulated by the neutral colour schemes.

    It happens. And there are remedies.

    Unauthorised decorating is reversed and ALWAYS deducted from deposit (tenants should note that most contracts state that changes to decor must be agree with the landlord) and, although I am very happy to carry out all standard repairs, unreasonable tenants will find that their contracts will not be renewed. The same goes for tenants who do not pay on time, cause a nuisance to the neighbours or turn the flat into a tip. Also, all items covered in a standard contract.

    This being the case, I see no reason to get annoyed or enter into personal disputes with tenants. I'm not their mother, I'm their landlord. Our arrangement is strictly business and as long as we all understand that, we will get along just fine.


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