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View Full Version : Furnished or unfurnished? What does 'furnished' include?



El Landlordio
01-03-2005, 13:02 PM
Hi there,

I have a friend A who lives in a flat owned by her father, and she currently shares it with another girl B, who is a friend of hers. As such she has no contract with her (I did try to tell her!) and she has a problem - I thought you might be able to help.

The flat is let as unfurnished but Friend A has bought all the furniture for all the rooms, with the exception of Friend B's room, which has a double bed but no other furniture. Friend B used the double bed provided and bought the reamining furniture herself when she moved in recently. However, this Friend B found the mattress to be uncomfortable and as such bought a new mattress, and said she would store the original mattress until such a time as she moved out. Friend B is now saying she doesn't want to store it and it has been in the lounge area for a couple of weeks; she says it is the responsibilty of Friend A to sort it out.

Who is in the right here? It doesn't seem very clear cut at all and they have no contract to fall back on...

zoe
01-03-2005, 13:44 PM
If she is just a lodger then your friend can do what ever she wishes. As the two are living together it's a good idea for them to remain friends or for your friend to ask her lodger to leave.

It's hardly worth the fuss over a mattress, just take it to the tip.

El Landlordio
01-03-2005, 15:09 PM
It's hardly worth the fuss over a mattress, just take it to the tip.[/QUOTE]

That's not an option, it will be needed as part of the bed when B moves out and isn't very old! Legally she's not really a lodger though is she, if the flat is owned by A's dad?

zoe
01-03-2005, 15:22 PM
If the friends "contract" is with your friend then yes she is a lodger. She would be a tenant if the contract is with the Dad.

Why couldn't the new mattress be left when she moves out ? They don't cost much to replace.

The alternative is to create friction between the two which is best avoided.

El Landlordio
01-03-2005, 15:29 PM
I think we have to assume that finances mean that neither of them wants to be in a situation where they are out of pocket/having to buy new stuff when the tenancy ends. Neither has anywhere or means to store the mattress. What I want to know is, where they each stand legally on this, as they are unlikely to resolve this amicably, sad but true. :rolleyes:

MrWoof
01-03-2005, 21:17 PM
Read what Zoe said, if the agreement is with Friend A then no problem but if it is with Dad, ouch. You say that there is no contract between them, is this the usual arrangement between friends, that is, no written agreement with anyone? If so then friend B is a A's lodger and A is the boss, B has few if any rights.

bordercars
23-11-2005, 20:05 PM
Advice please we are about to relet our house to a new tenant, she is working but gets her money made up by working tax credit, she doesn't mind furnished or not, it has been suggested that she will get a greater allowance to her rent if the property is let unfurnished , any ideas please.gary

P.Pilcher
23-11-2005, 22:45 PM
Apart from curtains and carpets, I avoid furnishing a property like the plague! Apart from checking that the furniture meets the fireproofing regulations, and additional efforts are needed in providing an inventory, I have, in the past, had tenants who are grateful for a furnished property then, half way through their tenancy promptly want my furniture removed so that they can move their own in! In addition, there is much more effort involved in moving furniture in and out of a property so I hope that this induces my tenants to stay for a longer period.

P.P.

MrShed
24-11-2005, 23:35 PM
If you find someone willing to move into an unfurnished property, then do so. Reasons:

- As PP says, tenants moving into unfurnished property tend to stay for a considerably longer time, as they have some kind of tie to the property.

- Again, as PP says, prevents some paperwork with inventory etc. Also, limits your liability to less items in the property, almost to just structural issues and certain fittings. You don't have to replace/repair/maintain white goods etc.

sidam
05-12-2005, 13:28 PM
We have been living abroad a little over a year and we are already into our second tenancy. Without consultation, our letting agent decided that this time round he would advertise our flat as furnished. In our first tenancy it was let unfurnished (or rather part-furnished); but we left a few items behind at the request of the tenants. We left 2 sofas, a few bookcases, a buffet, a glass case; microwave, freeview box etc. There was however, no table and chairs and no bed.
The agent says contractually there is no difference between furnished or unfurnished, which is why we did nt know of this change- ie it was not noted in the contract. The definition of 'furnished' according to the agent is: a place to sit, a place to store and a place to sleep. He says that there was enough furniture in the flat to deem it furnished. Our new tenants don't agree: they believed it was fully furnished having seen it with the previous occupants things and now want to move. Who is at fault?
thanks

MrShed
05-12-2005, 22:07 PM
What furniture is in the flat now then? You said in your first tenancy there were no beds supplied, is this still the case?

sidam
07-12-2005, 09:45 AM
Hello there and thanks for replying. Our first tenancy was unfurnished but we left a few things for the tenants ie book shelves buffet sideboard, glass case, and two sofas etc...but no bed and no table and chairs. The management company later at the end of this tenancy advertised the flat as furnished even though there was no bed and no table and chairs. The letting negotiator seems not to have known what stuff was ours because the company has lost the inventory. This we only learned at check out time. The new tenants believe they have let a fully furnished flat. Our agents say they probably won't stay long. At the changeover these poor folks were checked into to a dirty flat ( this is actually confirmed by the checkin report itself. ). It also appears the leeting compamy asked the former tenants to leave their bed, which they did. This bed was according to the new tenants dirty etc.... We had no idea this was going on. The agency told us a bed had been left in the flat and that we should charge the former tenants for the removal. It's a b..... mess, and we feel the agency should be held accountabler for not informing us of the missing inventory, and for representing the flat as furnished without consultation. We now have to travel to the UK to meet up with all irate parties, which includes us. Thanks for any advice. Gayle

MrShed
07-12-2005, 23:29 PM
Well....quite a complex little situation here! The tenants want to move out, this is the first thing to deal with. They may have little actual legal backing to do so, as there is no difference, legally, between a furnished and unfurnished flat. However, it could potentially fall under false advertising laws. But....legally and morally are two completely different things, and I believe that in this situation, you should agree to let them cancel the AST and move out. Then persue this financial loss against the agent, as I believe they are almost totally at fault.

sidam
08-12-2005, 15:49 PM
Thanks for your help. The tenants are also going to sue the Agency; and I have decided to part ways with the agency too. This will entail a lot of learning I suppose...my main aim would be to keep the agency and their manegment co from taking/keeping any of my money. to start....Thanks

MrShed
08-12-2005, 17:52 PM
Just a small point sidam. Unfortunately for you, if the tenants are going to sue anyone it HAS to be yourself as the landlord - this they will find out either when they consult with a legal professional, or attempt to sue the agent and have it thrown out. The agent and tenants have no ties, in effect. All legal responsibility falls upon you as the landlord with regards to the tenants. Of course, this does not mean that you cannot subsequently sue the agent for these losses.

prettyinpink7890
04-05-2006, 13:26 PM
Hi Everyone

I'm completely new to this. Can you help please? Although I've advertised my house to let unfurnished, I've had some interest in it as furnished. I'm quite clear on what constitutes "unfurnished" (carpets, curtains and cooker). However, I'm not so clear on what constitutes "furnished".

Am I right in thinking that it includes carpets, curtains, white goods (cooker/fridge/washer/microwave), kitchen utensils (crockery/cutlery/kettle/toaster), furniture (table/chairs/sofa/beds/wardrobes). Am I also required to provide a television, video, dvd player, stereo, bedding, towels, garden tools?

Apologies if this is a daft question!

Thanks for your help.

PiP x

Worldlife
04-05-2006, 14:23 PM
You might find the Inland Revenue definition helpful


Furnished property
To be classed as furnished the property must comply with the Stamp Office definition of "furnished" which is in accordance with that used by other departments of the Inland Revenue, meaning that the tenant can move into the property without having to take with him any furniture at all. The propertyshould therefore contain as a minimum such items as a sofa, one or more beds,plus a dining table and chairs, a cooker, carpets, curtains and other whitegoods in the kitchen. If the property only contains curtains, carpets and whitegoods in the kitchen this would not be classed as a furnished property.

I do not provide a television, video, dvd player, stereo, bedding, towels or garden tools.

Ericthelobster
04-05-2006, 17:33 PM
I'm quite clear on what constitutes "unfurnished" (carpets, curtains and cooker).Actually, no you're not clear! ;) In rental parlance, "unfurnished" means the walls have been plastered and that's about it. No carpets, curtains or white goods. There's little or no demand for unfurnished property in the short-term AST market. What you have currently is normally described as "part-furnished", although I don't think the IR makes any distinction.

prettyinpink7890
05-05-2006, 07:19 AM
Thanks Jonboy! I did a crash course in the pros and cons of being a landlord yesterday by looking over the site in preparation of my prospective tenant coming to view. I definitely want to minimise the chance of any horror stories for me.

Anyway, the prospective tenant said yes, he wants the house, so I sent him away with a TenantVerify application form to complete and return. I plan to do the Comprehensive Check with References.

At this stage is there anything else you recommend I do? He's (allegedly) a professional working locally for a multi-national on a 18 month contract. First impressions (both on the phone and face to face) were good and he seems to be saying the right things. He didn't baulk when I said I would do a credit check and he offered to pay one month's rent and bond up front in cash if I preferred. Apparently he's rented for years (to tie in with where his contracts are in the world) so is definitely more au fait with how it all works than me. (I'm renting out my own house to move into larger rented accommodation with my partner and children.)

I feel much better knowing that if I have any questions I can post them to this forum and one of you very helpful people will be on hand for support and advice.

Thanks everyone.

PiP x

junglejim
19-06-2006, 18:46 PM
Hello all,

Just about to embark on my first investment property. What are the pros, cons of furnished or unfurnished?
I am thinking of providing cooker and white goods, does this mean the property can be advertised as part furnished?
Any comments gratefully accepted.

P.Pilcher
19-06-2006, 22:48 PM
It depends on your market. some potential types of tenants - for example students - expect the premises they rent to be furnished, but in my experience with most of the tenants I have had over the years furniture is more trouble than it is worth. First of course much of the furniture must meet the fire regulations if supplied by the landlord. White goods must be maintained by the landlord and quite often I have had tenants contact me to say that they were acquiring some furniture themselves, so could you please remove this, that or the whole lot! Furthermore there appears in the main to be little difference in market rents between furnished and unfurnished properties. I now merely supply curtains, carpets, cooker and everything else is down to the tenant. Much less hassle that way.

P.P.

Ericthelobster
20-06-2006, 16:38 PM
Totally agree with everything PP says.

By the way - yes, cooker+white goods would be part-furnished.

Personally I let part-furnished (with cooker/oven/hob and fridge/freezer) but don't include a washing machine or dishwasher as they are pretty likely to go wrong, especially when subjected to "tenant abuse" - I let tenants provide their own.

paulmhenry@tiscali.co.uk
28-09-2006, 13:12 PM
Guys

Does anyone out there know how much more rental I could ask for a property when I furnish it.

What I'm talking about here is the % difference between unfurnished and furnished in terms of rental.

Any advice?

Cheers

MrShed
28-09-2006, 13:55 PM
As far as I know(although I must admit I have never really had any dealings with furnished property other than as a tenant) there is not really a difference in rental income per se. It is more about the type of tenant you are going to attract. Unfurnished generally attracts more long term, professional lets.

welshgold
28-09-2006, 15:49 PM
if your going to furnish, be prepared at end of tenancy 3 months or 3 years to have to do it all again.

cdpaul
22-05-2007, 23:33 PM
After my last tenant left and took my carpets/carpets they had replaced basically leaving no flooring in any rooms ive re-decorated and put in a new kitchen and bathroom.

I want to let as unfurnished but should that include carpets or not?

Looking for advise this please.

Thanx
Paul

Paragon
23-05-2007, 12:00 PM
Carpets are not a requirement for letting, unless, of course, the property is leasehold and the lease states that they are a requirement.

islandgirl
23-05-2007, 15:39 PM
My property always has carpets and curtains and is let unfurnished. Basic carpet is really cheap these days. It may not be a legal obligation but the property is more attractive to tenants. The only tenants who will wish to pay for carpets are those who intend to stay for years - if you can get them great, but many are 6 to 12 monthers only.

Ericthelobster
23-05-2007, 16:31 PM
The only tenants who will wish to pay for carpets are those who intend to stay for years - if you can get them great, but many are 6 to 12 monthers only.Agreed; and if you were a tenant would you want to pay for fitted carpets (which can be assumed to be effectively useless for any other property) when no LL is going to commit to a tenancy of morer than 6 months (or 12 months if they're lucky)? Or would you look for a different property with floor coverings?

This one's a no-brainer...

richardbarnes
24-05-2007, 07:56 AM
This is my first let!

I have advertised my property furnished, but prospective tenants have been asking for unfurnished. Does it effect legalities if the property is unfurnished.
Does it change anything apart from no furnishings.

Regards Richard

:confused:

diddled
24-05-2007, 08:19 AM
As far as I'm concerned it's your property and you can advertise it as you please. If you were to empty your house of furniture it would attract more tenants as most people have collected things of their own over the years. If the property was also empty AND had no furniture, you may be exempt from Council Tax for 6 months

Paragon
24-05-2007, 10:04 AM
Diddled has a very good point on the council tax. I rent my flats out unfurnished, but do keep some odds and ends in my garage to give to tenants if they need a little kitchen table or chair etc.

Wrighty
24-05-2007, 10:16 AM
That is a very interesting way of getting round council tax and still being able to give tenants some bits and bobs if they need it.. So by having an empty unfurnished house but keeping stuff in the garage you can avoid the tax? I did not know that.. Great tip guys..!

jeffrey
24-05-2007, 23:44 PM
This is my first let!

I have advertised my property furnished, but prospective tenants have been asking for unfurnished. Does it effect legalities if the property is unfurnished.
Does it change anything apart from no furnishings.

Regards Richard

:confused:

Legally: no.There used to be different legislative rules, in the days of the Rent Act, varying between furnished and unfurnished. There is no such difference for tenancies under the Housing Act 1988.

cdpaul
08-06-2007, 14:05 PM
Ive always let my house unfurnished, but my current tenants (a company who's men are working in my area) asked for furnished.

Ive put beds, wardrobes, fridge/freezer, washing machine, dining table/chairs,microwave, kettle, pans, crockery, cutlery, vacuum cleaner, 2 and 3 seater sofas, tv, video and dvd player in. The kitchen has built in oven and hob. I refused to supply bedding and towels.

Ive now been asked to supply a mirror in bathroom (for shaving) and ironing board and iron.

These items are not particularly costly but im worried about where it will end.

Just wondered what the norm is when "furnishing"?

Thanx

jeffrey
08-06-2007, 14:14 PM
Ive always let my house unfurnished, but my current tenants (a company who's men are working in my area) asked for furnished.

Ive put beds, wardrobes, fridge/freezer, washing machine, dining table/chairs,microwave, kettle, pans, crockery, cutlery, vacuum cleaner, 2 and 3 seater sofas, tv, video and dvd player in. The kitchen has built in oven and hob. I refused to supply bedding and towels.

Ive now been asked to supply a mirror in bathroom (for shaving) and ironing board and iron.

These items are not particularly costly but im worried about where it will end.

Just wondered what the norm is when "furnishing"?

Thanx

If a tenant wants furnished accommodation so you put more and more furnishings in your property:
a. it's much more lettable; but
b. you run much more risk. Not every T will make off with your goods, allow babies/pets to excrete on them, or set fire to them. However, accidental damage is always a possibility.
One alternative is to let it unfurnished but to offer to source furnishings if T pays for them. That way, they belong to T (or you could even formally sell - and T could buy - your contents).
However, isn't the Co. your tenant? If so, and - of course - it's therefore not an AST - the Co. is responsible for your contents even if its subtenants/licensees cause the loss of these.

soo
08-06-2007, 20:14 PM
I always offer an ironing board, whether fully furnished or not...since it stops tenants ironing on the carpet.


but i make a point of not offering irons or saucepans, since peoples choices of these can vary greatly....stainless steel or non-stick, steam iron or not etc, and these things get very easily damaged. Also i never offer any bedding for hygene - only a mattress with a new mattress cover for each tenancy.

hope this helps

J4L
08-06-2007, 20:28 PM
Methinks the best way to advertise this is PART-furnished and then you can put in whatever you like.
I recall reading somewhere that if you state that a property is furnished you are liable for nearly every eventuality such as cutlery and the such.

armadillo
05-07-2007, 19:47 PM
Hi,

I am emigrating shortly and want to let my flat as furnished.

Any advice on what I should/shouldnt leave?

I assumed originally that the more the better as it would be a "selling" point to get a tennant however I have been told that I will have to replace all items included in the inventory if they break. Is this right?....and if so should I remove unnecessary items?

Thanks:confused:

J4L
06-07-2007, 07:35 AM
I think your playing with fire here Armadillo by advertising as fully furnished

Yes, if items you list on the inventory break you will be liable to replace them.
Some people's views on fully furnished are knives, forks, TV's DVD's etc etc so I'd be tempted to advertise as part-furnished and make sure you do a very thorough inventory.
Remember though, the more items you leave the more can go wrong! so your increasing the chances of this Let costing you money. I'd probably sell everything and let as unfurnished.
If you do leave things make sure you get a responsible person or an agent to manage this whilst your away.

pcwilkins
06-07-2007, 09:23 AM
Hi,

I am emigrating shortly and want to let my flat as furnished.

Any advice on what I should/shouldnt leave?

Would advise "partly furnished" --- just leave large items such as furniture + kitchen appliances + possibly TV.


I assumed originally that the more the better as it would be a "selling" point to get a tennant

It would make your property more attractive to some but less attractive to others. I'm not sure what proportion of tenants have their own furniture --- we do, and a lot of other people I know would only take an unfurnished property as they have their own "stuff". I suggest that if your property is in the right area at the right price, furnished/unfurnished probably doesn't make a great deal of difference. Furnishing a property is surprisingly cheap anyway.


however I have been told that I will have to replace all items included in the inventory if they break. Is this right?....and if so should I remove unnecessary items?

It depends on the agreement --- most would include a clause stating that the landlord is responsible for keeping in working order everything supplied as part of the let. In other words, everything supplied in the property is your responsibility to maintain. After all, if a tenant is paying X for a property including a microwave, if the microwave breaks then the property is then worth a little bit less! The same principle would apply even for plates and spoons.

If you can't be bothered with selling everything and don't want to have the hassle of replacing items, you could include them in the property but not put them on the inventory. However the agreement might have to be carefully worded because items not on the inventory are still supplied by the LL for T's use and therefore would still be your responsibility. Maybe instead write L agrees to maintain in working order all items on inventory?

Peter

Esio Trot
06-07-2007, 10:06 AM
We had a landlord who did his own inventory. He really went OTT. For example, amongst the things expected to be listed in the understairs cupboard he had:

Yellow Dusters - 6
Rubber Gloves - Large and Medium - 1 pair each (used)
Feather Duster
Wooden Clothes Pegs - 2 dozen
Fusewire (part used)
Dustpan and Brush - Blue Plastic (Crack in handle of Dustpan)

His property was Fully Furnished, and the inventory ran to 22 pages!!

J4L
06-07-2007, 10:40 AM
haha.
Oh some people tickle me esio!

One thing I forgot to mention was that a landlord I know has left things like fridge freezer, cooker etc but has stated in the inventory and the tenant agreement that he will leave these items but doesn't want or to become responsible if the items fail or need repair. That he is happy for the tenant to dispose of them if this happens but they will be liable for any disposal costs or repair costs if they decide to have them repaired.
Dunno how legal this is but I guess if it's stated from the off it should be ok.

Shouldn't it??

pcwilkins
09-07-2007, 09:38 AM
One thing I forgot to mention was that a landlord I know has left things like fridge freezer, cooker etc but has stated in the inventory and the tenant agreement that he will leave these items but doesn't want or to become responsible if the items fail or need repair. That he is happy for the tenant to dispose of them if this happens but they will be liable for any disposal costs or repair costs if they decide to have them repaired.
Dunno how legal this is but I guess if it's stated from the off it should be ok.

Shouldn't it??

Not unnecessarily. Our tenancy agreement states that the L is responsible for keeping in working order "all appliances supplied with the property". This would include all appliances, even if not on the inventory. The wording of the agreement could be changed to exclude items not on the inventory.

However, as far as I am aware all items supplied with the property have to be safety checked even if they are left "as a gift". It is far safer to dispose of an item if you do not want responsibility for it.

After all, in the example above there would seem little incentive for the landlord to leave the appliances. He cannot increase the rent because they are there, because that would be construed as them being supplied as part of the rent, so he gains no financial benefit. And if those items cause a fire or electrocute the tenant, he will be held responsible whatever the TA/inventory say.

The same applies for furniture. It has to meet fire regulations even if the L claims it is a gift.

We had a dispute with our landlord about a year ago when our washing machine broke down. It was installed when we moved in, but the L claimed it was left "as a gift" and therefore it was our responsibility. I claimed that because of the clause I quote above, they were responsible whether it was "a gift" or not. It turned out that the term "as a gift" was meaningless --- if an item is supplied by the landlord for the tenant's use, the landlord was responsible for it. It turned out that the machine was on the inventory, despite L's claim that it wasn't, but even if it hadn't been I would have still maintained they had to fix/replace it.

Conclusion --- if you don't want to be responsible for an item, get rid of it!!! One alternative might be to sell it to the tenant for a small sum and get a receipt to confirm that ownership of said items is transferred from L to T.

Peter

tipsarooni
29-10-2007, 08:59 AM
Hi,
I am looking to rent out my old house for the first time. It was on the market for sale but with no interest. I've done lots of research and reading about letting your property.
Could anyone offer any advice on what furniture / equipment etc I should provide for tenant? it is a four bedroom house and i will be hoping to get four people to share it.
Are there any set minimum requirements that would constitute the term "furnished"? I just dont know whether to provide lots of "nice to have's" to make it look more attractive to potential tenants. Or to have the bare minimum thus less to account for breakages etc.

Please can i ask what peoples experiences are and any advice that you may be able to give?

Thankyou

Ericthelobster
29-10-2007, 09:44 AM
Before you go any further....

You say you want to rent to four sharers - if so that would make your property an HMO (House (Home?) of Multiple Occupation) which means that all sorts of legislation applies, like fire regs, getting a license, etc etc which may welll be prohibitive for you - read up on all this. If you let to, say, a family, then HMO regs don't apply.

Furnished vs unfurnished? Difficult to say; there's no easy answer. Depends largely on local conditions; eg if you're letting to students, they are unlikely to have their own furniture, whereas with a long-term let to a family they probably will.

You might consider you're more likely to get a longer term let if you let unfurnished, as tenants are less likely to want to move on a whim if they need to shift a houseful of gear.

Have a look in local letting agencies and get a feel for whether most of the direct competition is let furnished or not.

Also consider fire regs here - any soft furnishings must have the appropriate label to show that they are made of the appropriate fire-retardant material.

I think it's fair to say that the extra rent you'll take for a furnished let over an unfurnished let will be pretty small - certainly not enough to cover the cost of buying and maintaining a houseful of furniture.

Personally I let 'part-furnished' which most people interpret as being with carpets and curtains, plus maybe some white goods in the kitchen. Don't consider letting without floor coverings (especially) or curtains, as no tenant is going to want to spend large amounts of dosh on items which will only fit your property.

tipsarooni
29-10-2007, 10:15 AM
Thankyou for your advice. and the link for my questions.
With regards HMO, i thought the property had to be 3 floors AND 5 or more people? Mine is 2 floors and a max of 4 people. (in Manchester). I have read stuff on this forum re HMO - it is all a bit confusing! :confused:
I do keep seeing different things about whether or not my particular property would apply.

As for furnishings, the majority of the rooms have varnished floors (with no rugs). I'd like to keep it that way but i guess i need to consider the wear and tear on them.

juco12
30-01-2008, 21:56 PM
I am currently refurbishing a 2 bed property (Scotland) and plan to rent unfurnished.
I will have redecorated and have elec and gas tested. there will be a new kitchen installed with oven,hob and washing machine. All rooms will be carpeted and have blinds on the windows.
Are there any items that would normally be included in an unfurnished rental,
for example a fridge / freezer?
Anything I am missing?

thanks

Surrey
30-01-2008, 22:54 PM
I don't know if there are any clear rules, particularly with regard to Scottish law, but it is customary to provide cooker, washing machine and fridge, sometimes fridge-freezer or separate freezer depending on the layout of the property. I have found a dishwasher to be a complete pain in the bum to include in a let, being called to get it fixed when all it needed was for tenants to keep the filter thing clean is such a drag!

You can be flexible and let prospective tenants know that if they don't want to use your fridge/washing machine if they'd rather use their own that you will move it (but don't offer to reduce the rent, you'll still have to find somewhere to put it in the meantime!) and that they will be responsible for ensuring that it is fitted correctly and doesn't damage the property with leaks, etc in the case of the washing machine.

bagpuss
31-01-2008, 10:08 AM
Decide what you're willing to provide re white goods but if possible check with tenants as to what they will need/expect. We bought a cooker for one unfurnished property as there wasn't one there and when we found tenants they wanted to put their own in, so we ended up with a brand new unwanted cooker. We will make use of it eventually, but it's a cautionary tale......

juco12
31-01-2008, 18:46 PM
Thanks for the replies, one other question, as this property has a garden can I assume correctly that the `tenent` is responsible for the upkeep of the garden and do I have to supply any gardening tools?

thanks
Juco

pcwilkins
31-01-2008, 19:16 PM
can I assume correctly that the `tenent` is responsible for the upkeep of the garden

They are if you make them responsible in the agreement. They probably are even if you don't, but it's best to state these things.


and do I have to supply any gardening tools?

Not as far as I know. T is responsible for keeping the property clean as well, but you don't have to supply cleaning equipment. That said, most LLs will supply some equipment (like a lawnmower).

Peter

bagpuss
01-02-2008, 12:51 PM
With our family (non-HMO) properties, T's look after the garden but we provide a lawnmower where there's a lawn.

With student HMO's it's different. The council expects LL's to keep the garden in good order (not overgrown etc) and also keep the front of the property in good repair - no peeling paint etc. It's all part of obtaining the HMO certificate - at least with Rhondda Cynon Taff council. When it comes to HMO's, councils appear to have a lot of discretion about their rules.

Personally, I think it's a good idea re the HMOs, as students are poor at keeping up with this type of maintainance, and student areas can go downhill very quickly, knocking a lot of money off all the surrounding properties. In our area the student houses now look better than a lot of the home-owner houses.

fallenlord
01-02-2008, 13:03 PM
Unfurnished in our area comprises of cooker, carpets and curtains - nothing else. The tenant market doesnt demand additional white goods and this suits landlords who dont have purchase and then maintain fridges, freezers, etc.

We also dont supply lawnmowers or any garden tools, although it is a tenants responsibility to look after the garden. If you supply electrical gardening equipment you should ensure that instructions are supplied and the product is Pat tested each year.

Best advise is to supply nothing, test the market and respond to the requirements of a good tenant accordingly.

nask70
03-04-2008, 11:59 AM
as a private landlord are we under obligation to provide a matress for new tenants. i ask this because every six months i have to buy a new matress when the old teneat has left, which to me is costly. and what about washing machine who is liable if that breaks down, common sense tells me its the tenant because they use it and not me. however, legally is it the landlords job to get it repaired?

any answers to the above would be nice. thanks

jeffrey
03-04-2008, 13:15 PM
If you let furnished, it's up to you what furnishings you provide.

johnjw
03-04-2008, 13:42 PM
If you provide the white goods - fridge, washing machine etc. - it's up to you to repair them if they break down. The rent you charge should take account of your responsibility to do this.
New mattresses for each new tenant, perhaps after only 6 months, is certainly a big cost to take on. I can understand why you may think this is necessary but is it strictly so? After all, even 5 star hotels don't change the mattress for each new customer.
In my experience, providing full furnishings for 6 month tenancies is always likely to be uneconomic. You end up replacing worn or damaged items too frequently and for various reasons it may be difficult to recover the cost from the deposit.
A problem with less than full furnishings is that you are not strictly eligible for the 10% furniture and fittings tax allowance.

tenant29
03-04-2008, 16:18 PM
1. You should buy a mattress protector - rather like a quilted fitted sheet which is machine washable .

2. Flats normally have no place for hanging and drying clothes and so a washer/dryer should be installed. You have to leave instruction for proper use in the property otherwise the machine can be damaged too quickly.

jeffrey
03-04-2008, 16:45 PM
Are we under obligation to provide a matress for new tenants? I ask this because every six months I have to buy a new matress when the old tenant has left, which to me is costly.
Do you? Why do you 'have to'?

bagpuss
06-04-2008, 20:46 PM
I don't think that rendering a mattress unusable within 6 months would be regarded as fair wear and tear so, if your tenants really are ruining the mattresses in your property, I think that you'd be within your rights in deducting the cost of a new one from the ex-tenant's deposit.

dub_wiser
23-04-2008, 14:43 PM
My girlfriend and I have moved into a flat which we are renting. We found the flat through a letting agent who advertised the property as furnished. When we looked around the flat asked the letting agent we were told that all of the furniture would be there.

We moved in and found that the flat is really only part-furnished. The bed is gone and so is the dining table. The furniture left includes only a chest of drawers, sofa, tv desk and small coffee table. I would think that "furnished" should mean "furnished for daily use" which would surely include sleeping and eating.

The letting agent have let this property on previous occasions and said that they have always let it as furnished. Letting to us, they took the property details from their files and advertised it as furnished. They have said that it was the landlady's responsibility to notify them of any changes. The landlady has said that the property has always been unfurnished.

Neither one of them will take responsibility, apologise or do anything to help. The landlady offered us a table but after 2 weeks of not hearing from her we got one ourselves. Fortunately we have got a sofa bed but it is not very comfortable for sleeping on every night.

What can we do?

jeffrey
23-04-2008, 14:47 PM
What did the Inventory say? You presumably signed it on arrival, and it ought to be part of the Letting Agreement.

dub_wiser
23-04-2008, 15:40 PM
It was shown on the letting agents website as furnished, we were told by the agent showing us the property it was furnished and the letting agents have confirmed that they believe the flat is let as furnished. They didn't have an answer for me when I asked about the inventory; they're calling me back.

phil2
27-04-2008, 14:35 PM
I'm considering renting a room in my house to a friend and I've been reading up on the rent a room scheme.

The room I'd be renting would pretty much empty - just carpets, curtains, fitted wardrobes and possibly a bedside cabinet. My friend has his own bed and other furniture, which he'd want to bring with him.

The information at Directgov (http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/MoneyTaxAndBenefits/Taxes/TaxOnPropertyAndRentalIncome/DG_4017804) states the following:


Nor does the scheme apply if you let unfurnished accommodation in your home.

Does this mean that I wouldn't be able to rent the room under the rent a room scheme or does the fact the rest of the house is furnished mean that this would be ok?

Thanks for your help,

Phil

King_Maker
27-04-2008, 15:22 PM
In theory, a lodger should not need to provide his own bed.

However, if he/she insists, you could buy it from him and sell it back on leaving?

neilm
19-06-2008, 20:56 PM
With a sell and rent back strategy. Should the tenant be completing a furnished ast or an un-furnished ast as all the contents belongs to the tenant.

jeffrey
20-06-2008, 09:24 AM
With a sell and rent back strategy. Should the tenant be completing a furnished ast or an un-furnished ast as all the contents belongs to the tenant.

Either, contents provision/insurance excepted. The 1988 Act generally does not distinguish between furnished and unfurnished lettings.

Chewy
11-07-2008, 13:51 PM
What is the definition of unfurnished? Landlords have to supply a cooker but do landlords have to supply carpets & curtains and is there anything else they have to supply?

jeffrey
11-07-2008, 13:57 PM
Not by law, no, unless:
a. there are specific rules re certain types of tenancies (e.g. HMO?); or
b. L is a leaseholder whose own lease imposes coveants re contents that are already binding.

Pelican eats pigeon
11-07-2008, 14:03 PM
It seems to be very arbitrary. Our flat is clearly furnished but is labelled as unfurnished on the Tenancy Agreement - presumably so LL can claim 100% council tax discount during void periods.

mind the gap
11-07-2008, 14:13 PM
Sounds a bit scammy! Is there an inventory? If yes, doesn't that prove it's furnished? If not, you could (hypothetically, if you were a criminal, which I'm sure you're not!) flog the stuff on eBay and LL couldn't prove a thing.

Pelican eats pigeon
11-07-2008, 14:17 PM
No, no inventory and yes, I could. He doesn't really know what he's doing, but he's been quite alright with us, we've spoken to him maybe three times in a year with the added benefit of no agents to deal with.

The downside of unfurnished, I think, is that you can't claim a wear and tear allowance? Or have I got that wrong?

Editor
12-07-2008, 15:14 PM
This FAQ my be useful here:

http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/FAQ/index.php?action=artikel&cat=2&id=21&artlang=en

akasha85
05-09-2008, 10:13 AM
Hello there everyone,

I'd really appreciate some advice on my situation. I recently signed a contract for renting a furnished studio. The problem is that the studio isn't currently furnished, but my landlord will furnish it before I move in. When I told the agent that alot of the necessities are missing, such as vacuum cleaner, pans, microwave, etc. she said i shouldn't be so picky and that the landlord isn't obliged to provide me with those.
Now, correct me if i'm wrong, but aren't all of those supposed to be provided since the flat is furnished? Isn't it logical that since the landlord expects me to look after his flat and clean it, he should provide me with a vacuum cleaner? I really cannot afford to buy one, along with the rest of the things that I need. There are no dust bins or even a toilet brush in the bathroom, and I do believe that these are necessities. It's not just me being picky and spoiled. The agent even dared to tell me that I can't expect the landlord to get me chairs, because I should buy them myself. She said he'll only provide me with a table! I mean, a table and no chairs?!It doesn't make sense.
I would really appreciate it if someone here, who's more experienced than me, can tell me what's included in a furnished flat, and whether I have the right to demand to have a vacuum cleaner and etc from my landlord.

Thanks!

jeffrey
05-09-2008, 10:35 AM
"Furnished" has no definite meaning; no specific items are necessitated by using the word. That's why an Inventory is almost always essential, to show which items L is providing within a 'furnished' letting.

TenantsLuvMe
05-09-2008, 10:53 AM
Jeffrey is right, there is no standard definition of what constitutes furnished.

Some LL's and letting agents have a set amount of items that they regard as required for a furnished property, such as (furniture) beds, chairs, bedside cabinets, table lamps, wardrobes, chest of drawers, sofas, coffee tables, dining tables with chairs.

In the kitchen, this varies quite a bit as some people have collected items during previous tenancies or home ownership and so this is custom, but large items such as microwave, fridge, a sink drainer, is standard for me unless the tenant doesn't want them.

I always provide a vacuum cleaner & some replacement bags, ironing board and iron, loo brushes and perhaps a couple of spare light bulbs.

I am also open to requests for additional items, but I've rarely had any.

You should have got a commitment from the LL as to what he will provide prior to agreeing to take the property. That way you could decide whether to proceed or not.

miss_elle
05-09-2008, 11:04 AM
I work at an estate agents and we manage a lot of properties. Our general rule is not to provide cutlery, pots and pans, microwaves etc, as wear and tear is so bad that you'll be replacing it each time a tenant moves in. However we do always provide hoovers, irons and ironing boards.

What I would suggest is providing a list of the things you require, and finding out from the Landlord what they're willing to supply.

John the Don
03-12-2008, 08:43 AM
First post from a soon-to-be first-time landlord. One thing I'm getting conflicting views on is what items to supply for a furnished let. For example, the inventory page on this site at http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/inventories.htm lists various kitchen items: Dinner set, Tea set, Cutlery, Small Medium and Large pans, Frying pan, Baking trays, Casserole dishes, Basic utensils, Hoover/Vacuum cleaner, Kettle, Ironing board, Iron. I showed this list to one of the letting agents I'm thinking of using, and their response was that the tenant would be expected to provide all those items, with the exception of a vacuum cleaner. Any thoughts please?

jta
03-12-2008, 08:48 AM
I agree with your LA, just supply the bare basics. The chances are that your choices would not suit the lady of the house in any case.

mind the gap
03-12-2008, 09:03 AM
First post from a soon-to-be first-time landlord. One thing I'm getting conflicting views on is what items to supply for a furnished let. For example, the inventory page on this site at http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/inventories.htm lists various kitchen items: Dinner set, Tea set, Cutlery, Small Medium and Large pans, Frying pan, Baking trays, Casserole dishes, Basic utensils, Hoover/Vacuum cleaner, Kettle, Ironing board, Iron. I showed this list to one of the letting agents I'm thinking of using, and their response was that the tenant would be expected to provide all those items, with the exception of a vacuum cleaner. Any thoughts please?

There's a balance to be struck between providing sufficient domestic equipment for the property to be attractive to most prospective tenants when they look round, and overfilling the cupboards with 'stuff' which is hard to keep tabs on (e.g. if they break one plate in a dinner set, will you be able to get a replacement in 2 years time?). Plus, some tenants prefer to get their own tableware and cooking equipment, even students. Despite the fact that most student houses are awash with crockery, pans, etc., new groups of student tenants always rush off to Ikea and buy more. It's mad, but it's down to some primeval home-making instinct humans seem to have when moving in somewhere.

I would recommend providing all cleaning equipment (as nobody gets quite so excited about buying their own brushes or mops), and even a container full of cleaning materials (to be replenished by tenants at end of tenancy). My experience is that if you provide it, they will use it, whereas they may not think to go out and buy some themeselves. (Especially if they are students!)

If you do decide to provide tableware, go for simple, low-budget white stuff (back to Ikea!). Provide a couple of breadboards and choppingboards so they don't chop things on the work surface. A basic set of pans is always useful, but not a frying pan as cheap ones are useless and expensive ones will get wrecked anyway. They will also appreciate a cheap kettle and toaster to begin with, although they may choose to buy better ones of their own at some point.

Other things I wouldn't bother with : too many cushions,any bedding (except for frames and mattresses) however, I do provide mattress protectors and insist they are used; too many portable electrical appliances (more to test and go wrong), ornaments, pictures on walls (you'll never suit someone else's taste), bath/toilet mats

Things which have saved me money : providing rugs next to beds (saves carpets from tea, coffee, wine spills); machine washable curtains; buying a good carpet cleaning machine and learning how to use it; a large capacity, good quality washing machine (Comet auction site - brilliant - reduced by 40%) but not the extended warranty; ironing board and provision for safe storage of iron - so it;s less likely to be used/left on the carpet with resultant iron-shaped burns (very common, depressingly).


I'm sure other members will have suggestions too.

Poppy
03-12-2008, 16:19 PM
I normally supply:

Bed (dismantable wood frames are good because they collapse into a pile of sticks if tenant has their own bed)
Bedroom furniture
Sofa (machine washable covers or leather)
Nest of tables
Washing machine
Fridge freezer
Dining table and chairs
Table mats
Cooker
Cleaning equipment (vacuum cleaner, broom, mop, bucket, dustpan and brush)
Ironing board
Curtains (machine washable)


I don’t bother with:

Microwave oven
Kettle
Cutlery
Crockery
Iron
Pots and pans

Basically only supply the minimum you think is acceptable to an incoming hopefully nest-building tenant.

arusha
03-12-2008, 17:46 PM
keep your electrical items to a minimum so your pat testing bill is cheaper.

Mark H
09-05-2009, 14:00 PM
I will be moving into a new house next month, and renting out my flat in West London where I currently live. This is my first foray into the world of renting property. I would prefer to take all my furniture to the new property and rent the flat as unfurnished. However, I have it in my mind that it will be easier to rent a flat furnished rather than unfurnished. In the experience of the forum members is the true? Any answers or advice gratefully received.

Regards,

Mark

mind the gap
09-05-2009, 14:43 PM
I will be moving into a new house next month, and renting out my flat in West London where I currently live. This is my first foray into the world of renting property. I would prefer to take all my furniture to the new property and rent the flat as unfurnished. However, I have it in my mind that it will be easier to rent a flat furnished rather than unfurnished. In the experience of the forum members is the true? Any answers or advice gratefully received.

Regards,

Mark

Just a few questions:

How much is the rent?

How long do you envisage your tenants staying there?

What's the 'profile' of the tenant(s) you envisage letting to? (Students, young professionals, family, etc).

theartfullodger
09-05-2009, 15:51 PM
You can always advertise it as unfurnished, prepared to furnish. If someone really really wants furnished a quick trip to IKEA is needed. I furnished a 3-bed terrace in 2007 for £780-ish, increased rent above unfurnished advertised by £35/.mo (Do the math as the merkins say). No complaints yet about the furniture!

As a new Landlord you may not be fully familiar with all the HMRC income / expenses rules: If it is furnished you are permitted to deduct 10% of the rent as expenses for "Wear 'n Tear" each year. (Yes, you must declare income: And get EPC: And Corgi if Gas: And tell Mortgage lender if there is one etc etc etc..)

Trawl here & there's shed-loads of threads with advice for new LLs..

Welcome to the fun world of Property Letting!

Cheers!

Lodger

Mark H
09-05-2009, 17:46 PM
Just a few questions:

How much is the rent?

How long do you envisage your tenants staying there?

What's the 'profile' of the tenant(s) you envisage letting to? (Students, young professionals, family, etc).

The flat will be in Twickenham, about 1/2 mile from the station. I am having the flat redecorated and recarpeted to a reasonably decent standard, and based on a quick check on Globrix, I think the rent will be around £1,000.00 per month.

It be a long term let. Probably at least 5 years.

I will be looking at the young professional market.

Thanks for all your really useful advice. I think I am going to go-along with the suggestion of advertising as unfurnished, but I will be prepared to furnish if needed.

I agree about IKEA. I am sure there are people wandering lost in their stores who do not realise that Tony Blair is no longer prime minister!

Fleet
01-07-2009, 10:46 AM
A friend has recently signed a tenancy agreement for a furnished flat but when she moved in the flat had no furniture - the agreement clearly states that the flat should be furnished and is signed by the landlord's management company. The letting agency and the management company are equally useless and are blaming eachother for this error. The management company claim that the flat has never been furnished and that the landlord does not want to furnish it and claims that the lettings agency advertised it incorrectly. The lettings agency state that the management company have made an error and clearly signed that this flat was furnished. Neither of them is taking responsibility although they both acknowledge that my friend is blameless.

Neither the lettings agency or the management company are being of any assistance and keep fobbing her off - please what should she do and who should be taking responsibility for this? My friend has paid the full six months in advance and there is also a leak in one of the ceilings which the management company are being equally lazy and useless about fixing.

Your advice would be appreciated.

Lawcruncher
01-07-2009, 11:02 AM
I feel I have to ask: did she not inspect the interior of the flat?

Whatever the answer, she signed up for a furnished flat and the flat is not furnished.
Leaving aside legal niceties, the landlord ought to furnish the place without further delay or offer back all the money that your friend has paid. If neither happens your friend needs to make some very serious noises about threatening to sue.

Fleet
01-07-2009, 11:39 AM
Her boyfriend looked at the flat and it was furnished. He was told that the furniture would be staying. My friend did not see it before moving in. The management company claim that the property can't have been furnished.
They do not want to move out and just feel that they shouldn't have to suffer for someone else's error.

robworthington1
09-02-2010, 12:39 PM
hi,

i recently moved into a flat. the flat was advertised as unfurnished. i viewed it just after the previous tenant had moved out, so there were still a lot of items that had been left behind. there were also items of furniture, e.g. some wardrobes and a bed, that had been said to belong to the landlord, although they would be flexible about they possibility of me removing these at start of the tenancy.

on moving into the flat, it had not been cleaned since the last tenants vacated it. i had made the assumption that it would be cleaned, as most agencies would do this, however i realise that this was a bad assumption to make.

my problem is this. the kitchen was in the worst state in terms of cleanliness, for instance there were dishes in the cupboard that were dirty and greasy, the appliances (kettle toaster etc.) were also dirty and greasy, so i threw these items away assuming that they belonged to the previous tenants, since when i viewed the flat, the only items that were mentioned by the agent were items of furniture, and these items were all dirty and in a bad state of repair. i also never received an inventory until over a week after i had moved in.

the agent had told me at various points to dispose of items that i did not require, and score them off the inventory, or that i would be given a new inventory with only the items requested that i keep in the flat, and various other suggestions. so when the inventory came, i was surprised that the kitchen items were on it, even down to the unwashed dishes, cutlery etc. i scored them off, and subsequently received an angry letter with another inventory that had been partly updated, but still contained items that i apparently was not authorised to throw away.

if anyone has any advice as to where i stand or how to resolve this disagreement, it would be greatly appreciated, as obviously i want to stay on good terms with the agent, etc.

sorry for such a long post, hope someone can be of help. thanks in advance :)

Snorkerz
09-02-2010, 12:45 PM
First question, do you have the agents instructions in writing? This would ease your situation greatly.

However, if the landlord wanted to deduct the value of these things from the deposit at the end of the tenancy, he would have to prove, either to the deposit scheme or in court, that they were there at the start.

Without a signed inventory showing them, he would have difficulty proving this. So, whatever you do, don't sign an inventory showing them.

robworthington1
09-02-2010, 13:48 PM
First question, do you have the agents instructions in writing? This would ease your situation greatly.

However, if the landlord wanted to deduct the value of these things from the deposit at the end of the tenancy, he would have to prove, either to the deposit scheme or in court, that they were there at the start.

Without a signed inventory showing them, he would have difficulty proving this. So, whatever you do, don't sign an inventory showing them.

hi snorkerz, thanks for your reply. in answer to your first question, i sort of do. the problem is that the letter states "furniture" rather than "items" or "things". so i'm thinking this might not cover the dishes and cutlery, kitchen stuff that is the root of the problem. i asked specifically for the letter after being instructed verbally that i could throw away anything i didn't need, (at this point the main items of contention were large items of furniture that were taking up a lot of space, and i didn't think these smaller kitchen items were of any consequence), hence why the letter states "furniture".

regarding your second question, i did sign the initial inventory, the one with everything on it, but the items in question i scored off, with the exception of a few that i scored off and also put a note because the item in question was broken or unsafe. this is what i was told to do, although it seems to have caused the problem. as for the second inventory, i have not signed or returned it, and based upon your advice i don't think i will. do you think this would be the best course of action?

thanks again for your advice.

Snorkerz
09-02-2010, 14:14 PM
Others will, no doubt comment - but I think you are doing fine right now. You could do with a copy of the inventory you signed, so that in 6 months or 12 months time you don't find yourself facing a 'doctored' one. I would add that a lack of an inventory with these items on does not mean it is impossible for the landlord to prove they were there - he may have independent statements or similar - but the landlord would not be able to call the 'agent' independent as the pagent is paid by the landlord.

ram
09-02-2010, 14:33 PM
the flat was advertised as unfurnished.

If it were me, I would say, Hey, this flat is rented out unfurnished, and all you have done is done an inventary showing what was left by the previous tenant. Please rewrite the inventory for an unfurnished flat, and, still saying this is an unfurnished flat, so the items you made me sign for is in error. Say you want the items removed, as it is clearly an error.

Stick to your guns, together with advice above mine. Try it, as they are trying to change what you rented, from unfurnished, to furnished, and possibly to charge you for possible neglect of items in the future the landlord never supplied initialy.

robworthington1
09-02-2010, 16:51 PM
hi again snorker. i have had no contact at all with the landlord, as the agent is being cagey about disclosing contact info. i know i am legally entitled to this, but don't want to exacerbate the situation. i have a feeling that the landlord probably wouldn't even bother about the items in question to be honest.

ram, i tried that, and was met with a point blank refusal to remove the stuff, told to remove it myself, and then given a load of drivel about tenants in unfurnished flats sometimes appreciating the odd bit a piece of furniture, because they might not have much :rolleyes:

oh well. thanks for your replies, i'll just see what happens i suppose. anyone else with advice feel free to chime in.

Snorkerz
09-02-2010, 16:59 PM
To get landlords details - go to Land Registry website and look up the owner of your rental property (cost £4). No guarantee it will be up to date (he may have moved)

jeffrey
10-02-2010, 10:40 AM
To get landlords details - go to Land Registry website and look up the owner of your rental property (cost £4). No guarantee it will be up to date* (he may have moved)
Or serve s.1 Notice, under LTA 1985.

* but the proprietor's name always is; it's only the proprietor's address that might not be.

Louise C.
28-05-2010, 17:09 PM
I have previously let my properties out furnished and have decided to rent my latest property out unfurnished. Is there anything that I need to provide even though it is marketed as "unfurnished"

fletchj
28-05-2010, 17:18 PM
Need in the legal sense - not really

Need in the sense that you may have difficulty renting out perhaps. My unfurnished rentals have.

- cooker
- central heating
- smoke alarms
- fitted kitchen units
- curtains
- shower curtains

some LLs also provide some other white goods frequently fridge and sometimes freezer, washing, dryer, dishwasher but remember if you provide that stuff you have to fix it/replace if it breaks. On the other side of the coin if the tenants plumb in washing machines that can have its own issues!

nugget
28-05-2010, 18:08 PM
From a tennants point of view, who rents unfurnished, I've never rented anywhere that doesn't provide white goods until now and I really knocked him down on his rent because of it (his property had been on since Feb).

My advice would be to provide white goods because it's a hassle for tennants to purchase them and move them all the time which is really a turn off and since most places provide them you can't always take them with you to your new place.

The minimum I usually expect is a washer, fridgefreezer (at least fridge with ice box) and cooker. Although a dishwasher and dryer do sell it to me and if it was a big kitchen I'd half expect them.

Curtains are a plus too.

Hope that helps from my point of view, maybe you should check the competition on rightmove to see what they provide with there unfurnished rentals for the same price in your area. :)

Sad S
28-05-2010, 18:11 PM
I have previously let my properties out furnished and have decided to rent my latest property out unfurnished. Is there anything that I need to provide even though it is marketed as "unfurnished"

Lots of properties have fitted wardrobes, but if yours hasn't then tenants might be pleased if you were to provide a wardrobe.

subjecttocontract
28-05-2010, 18:38 PM
My unfurnished places have:
* Carpets/ floorcoverings,
* Curtains/ blinds
* Light fittings/ lampshades
* Cooker
* Fridge

Plus smoke alarms, fire blanket in kitchen, shower curtains (where there is no shower screen).

AND I provide a vacuum cleaner rather than rely on the tenant who may decide one is not needed.

Sad S
13-06-2010, 18:42 PM
Is there much of a differential between the rent for a furnished letting versus that for an unfurnished letting?

Trying to let a flat which, apart from the carpets, curtains, and white goods in the kitchen, is unfurnished.

For several prospective tenants, the lack of furniture seemed to be a significant obstacle.

If we were to spend say £1500 putting in basic furniture, could we expect an enhanced rent level? If so, is there any rule of thumb to indicate the increase in rent?

jta
13-06-2010, 18:53 PM
Is there much of a differential between the rent for a furnished letting versus that for an unfurnished letting?

Trying to let a flat which, apart from the carpets, curtains, and white goods in the kitchen, is unfurnished.

For several prospective tenants, the lack of furniture seemed to be a significant obstacle.

If we were to spend say £1500 putting in basic furniture, could we expect an enhanced rent level? If so, is there any rule of thumb to indicate the increase in rent?

The problem with putting furniture in is that the next tenant may not want it, what do you do with it then. as for spending 1.5K, that seems like a lot to me, it's quite possible to source good, serviceable furniture for a lot less than that. even allowing for new beds rather than s/h ones. Tenants with their own stuff are likely to be that bit more houseproud than ones who have no interest in what you have supplied. I have found that those who want it furnished do not generally want to pay the premium price for it.

There are firms that will hire you a furniture pack, I've never used them but you could look into it to see if it's economic.

mop121
13-06-2010, 21:24 PM
Personally I try and avoid it, to much hassle if something breaks and you will never the end of it as well. What I suggest is if the tenants ask for certain items provide what they need. In other words if they want a fridge freezer then yes but ask them at the start what they will be bring so you have an idea. And remember to include items in the inventory and AST Agreement.

stoker48
15-08-2010, 14:01 PM
I already let out an unfurnished 2 bed house through an local agent.

I have one bedroom flat in central London which my son lives in and he is moving out in November.

I am thinking of letting this furnished. Apart from fire regulations on the mattress and settee is there anything else I need to be aware of? I am right in thinking that you dont get that much more for letting furnished?

I do not intend to leave a TV but should I provide bedding, pots, pans, plates, toaster, iron, duvet etc?

The flat has a reasonable bathroom which I will tdy up before renting. It has a reasonable over the bath shower. In your opinion, do I need to take the bath out and replace with proper shower unit?

Finally, can anyone recommend a letting agent near Liverpool Street / Algate / City area.

Thanks very much in advance.:)
Jay

jta
15-08-2010, 14:33 PM
I do not intend to leave a TV but should I provide bedding, pots, pans, plates, toaster, iron, duvet etc?

The flat has a reasonable bathroom which I will tdy up before renting. It has a reasonable over the bath shower. In your opinion, do I need to take the bath out and replace with proper shower unit?



I would not leave any of those things certainly do not supply bedding, other than a good mattress cover, supply basic furniture only. There is no reason why you should have to change the bathroom, if it was good enough for your son it should be good enough for a tenant

teeps
15-08-2010, 15:51 PM
It isn't worth the hassle TBH.Everything you supply in a furnished flat/house is L responsibility and for what allowances you can claim is not worth the bother in my experience.Carpets, curtains and light shades are all I supply and built in cookers and hob of course.Any gas appliances including hobs, fires, ovens, boilers ETC must be checked every year and be covered with a landlords gas safety certificate.

subjecttocontract
15-08-2010, 16:25 PM
In my opinion, the biggest downside to letting furnished property in my area of Essex is that during voids it is liable to 50% of the council tax bill.... whereas unfurnished is free for 6 months during the propertys lifetime.

As a result there is a distinct shortage of furnished property which results in lots of applicants and smaller voids.

westminster
17-08-2010, 09:58 AM
I am thinking of letting this furnished. Apart from fire regulations on the mattress and settee is there anything else I need to be aware of? I am right in thinking that you dont get that much more for letting furnished?

I do not intend to leave a TV but should I provide bedding, pots, pans, plates, toaster, iron, duvet etc?

The flat has a reasonable bathroom which I will tdy up before renting. It has a reasonable over the bath shower. In your opinion, do I need to take the bath out and replace with proper shower unit?
I have a 1-bed fully-furnished rental in London WC2, and have had it over 10 years now. I provide pretty much everything except for bedding/towels/rugs. Very rarely had a tenant who wants me to move anything out because they have their own toaster/sofa/saucepans, etc, and I rarely have voids, so I assume this suits my market (30+ single professionals, or rich foreign MA students).

If this is a long-term investment, I would recommend you buy solid, good quality furnishings (not necessary the most expensive) as you invariably have to replace shoddy stuff. Also buy tenant-proof stuff; e.g. surfaces which don't mark if T puts down a mug of tea, not non-stick pans as the coating will get scratched, Duralex glasses (available on ebay) which are practically indestructible, etc.

A side benefit is that better quality furnishings attract better tenants and a higher rent. And in a competitive market, you need to make your place better than your competitors'.

I think you can claim 10% depreciation per annum on furnishings' value.

An over-bath shower is fine (assuming the shower fitting is a proper one) but again, if this is long-term, and especially if the bathroom is small, it's worth considering removing the bath and installing a shower unit, to maximise the space. Make sure there is ample bathroom storage, too - often overlooked (and storage generally is important - everyone wants lots of it).

Another essential is cable/broadband - I don't mean provide it to T, but there must be the means to connect to a provider.

wiji
28-08-2010, 13:09 PM
My friend and I have recently been handed the keys to our new apartment, and only on closer inspection have discovered that the property does not have items such as a vacuum cleaner, cutlery or crockery, microwave and an iron&ironing board. These are all items that in previously let properties I have stayed in advertised as 'furnished' have been included. If they are not provided then i will have to buy them as for me these items are essential. What is the landlord required to provide by law? Any help appreciated!

Ericthelobster
28-08-2010, 14:02 PM
What is the landlord required to provide by law? Any help appreciated!Nothing at all - the terms 'part-furnished', 'furnished' etc have no legal standing as such; it's up to you to see for yourself what's included when you view the property.

theartfullodger
28-08-2010, 14:58 PM
However HMRC will have a view...

I think providing one small bathroom mat would not satisfy the Revenue...

http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/manuals/pimmanual/pim3200.htm
.

A furnished property is one that is capable of normal occupation without the tenant having to provide their own beds, chairs, tables, sofas and other furnishings, cooker etc. The provision of nominal furnishings will not meet this requirement. If the accommodation isn’t furnished, or only partly furnished, the 10% wear and tear allowance isn’t due.
.

Cheers!

Artful

Poppy35
28-08-2010, 14:58 PM
Nothing at all - the terms 'part-furnished', 'furnished' etc have no legal standing as such; it's up to you to see for yourself what's included when you view the property.

100% agree.

Unfurnished in my "world" means a cooker and nothing else, in other towns/cities it means nothing at all.

stoker48
28-08-2010, 17:16 PM
Thanks for this.

I will need to provide a settee and table and chairs. The two Lettings agents I have approached (who are coming on Weds to view / sign me up) say they have "contacts" and can probably get one for a few hundred pounds.

Has anyone experience of buying from a letting agents "contacts". They said dont buy expensive as furniture will need to be replaced every 3 years or so.

Thats fine, but would it be better for me to try and source myself or can the LA really get me a good deal? And if I buy myself from a cheaper store (ie leather settee for say £350) am I really wasting my money on something that wont last?

Many thanks

rachel230
28-08-2010, 19:28 PM
E-bay is amazing!! I furnished my flat (which is in a good area and commands a good rent) through buying on ebay. I got fantastic top quality stuff from one ebayer in South Kensington who was moving abroad and wanted rid of everything pronto!

Rachel

Ericthelobster
28-08-2010, 20:37 PM
One other reason to go 'unfurnished' is that if the property is ever empty, you typically get 100% council tax for 6 months, whereas with furnished you don't (I think with most councils you just get the same 25% discount as a second-home owner).

jeffrey
29-08-2010, 21:28 PM
One other reason to go 'unfurnished' is that if the property is ever empty, you typically get 100% council tax** for 6 months, whereas with furnished you don't (I think with most councils you just get the same 25% discount as a second-home owner).
**- i.e. 100% Council Tax discount.

Chipie
24-10-2010, 17:08 PM
I'm new to the letting market and am in the process of purchasing two properties, one with tenants already aboard and one with tenants to find.

Both will be let on the basis of unfurnished but my query is what essential items are still required to be supplied by me even as an unfurnished let? I am assuming that a cooker and fridge freezer are essentials, but have also read that it is good practice to supply things such as a vacuum cleaner, lawn mower etc to encourage the tenant to adequately maintain the property.

Are we withon our rights to negotiate an extra over on the monhly rent for a washer and dryer for example?

Thanks in advance.

Brb
24-10-2010, 17:15 PM
Depends on the property really. If I was renting a flat I would probably want fridge/freezer, washer/dryer and oven but if I was renting a house all I want is an oven.

HairyLandlord
24-10-2010, 19:25 PM
I'm new to the letting market and am in the process of purchasing two properties, one with tenants already aboard and one with tenants to find.

Both will be let on the basis of unfurnished but my query is what essential items are still required to be supplied by me even as an unfurnished let? I am assuming that a cooker and fridge freezer are essentials, but have also read that it is good practice to supply things such as a vacuum cleaner, lawn mower etc to encourage the tenant to adequately maintain the property.

Are we withon our rights to negotiate an extra over on the monhly rent for a washer and dryer for example?

Thanks in advance.

While there is a legal minimum that a LL must provide in a rental home (property is secure from elements, sanitation/bathing and water/space heating), there is no agreed definition of what unfurnished or furnished mean, so this matter is entirely upto you to decide on and tenants these days come with varying amounts of possessions.
I would however speak to several letting agents to see what your competitor landlords are doing and use that as a basis to form your own decision, since that is what your potential tenants are doing when comparing available homes.

In addition, I would also be prepared to negotiate on additional items, especially if its to get a tenant who particular appeals to you or who is looking to stay long term or who appeals in other ways.
While the rental market remains iffy/tricky/vulnerable, it pays to be flexible.

Finally, remember that the more you supply, the more you have to maintain.

theartfullodger
24-10-2010, 20:35 PM
there is no agreed definition of what unfurnished or furnished mean, so this matter is entirely upto you to decide on and tenants these days come with varying amounts of possessions.



Don't think that's how HMRC see things... see


http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/manuals/pimmanual/PIM3200.htm


A furnished property is one that is capable of normal occupation without the tenant having to provide their own beds, chairs, tables, sofas and other furnishings, cooker etc. The provision of nominal furnishings will not meet this requirement. If the accommodation isn’t furnished, or only partly furnished, the 10% wear and tear allowance isn’t due.

In my experience most people expect cooker, F/F, washing machine in unfurnished property but some tenants can come with some white goods, especially if having left their own (owned) home. Being flexible (both ways) or inventory & rent can help ensure you get the tenant you want (in all senses...)

HairyLandlord
24-10-2010, 22:47 PM
Don't think that's how HMRC see things... see


http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/manuals/pimmanual/PIM3200.htm



In my experience most people expect cooker, F/F, washing machine in unfurnished property but some tenants can come with some white goods, especially if having left their own (owned) home. Being flexible (both ways) or inventory & rent can help ensure you get the tenant you want (in all senses...)

But the HMRC, which is only concerned with the tax aspect of this area, does not define what furnished or unfurnished actually means.

Even your definition is dependent on other factors.

Then you have the situation where you have provided all those items in the HRMC/your list and then you get a tenant who is going to bring their own of this, that and the other and so you have to take some items out - how are you then going to define your property in the tenancy agreement and with the tax man?
It gets tricky.

Until proper definitions are made, its going to be upto each landlord to decide.

Best not to try an make a point where non

Springfields
25-10-2010, 06:05 AM
The majority of tenants will expect the main appliances, washing machine, cooker, fridge freezer to be supplied to a property. However, if you are flexible in terms of what you are willing to supply and the tenant requires an additional item(s) you can always look to source them on request.

If we have flexible Landlords they tend to charge between £25-£100 extra PCM for furnishing a property, this is dependant on what items they need to purchase new, how much they have to source etc. Figures need to be sensible and are negotiated with the tenant prior to agreeing to take the property.

Drpepper
31-10-2010, 14:14 PM
First off, I'm new here so Hi.

Have just purchased a property that I intend to let out on AST. Which would be better, letting it furnished or unfurnished. Reason I am thinking furnished is that we may at some point wish to live there ourselves for a while, or after six months stop letting it and use it as a holiday home. What % extra rent could I expect (if any), and what problems have you guys had with letting furnished?

Any help and advice would be very welcome.

theartfullodger
31-10-2010, 14:21 PM
In your shoes try the option of naming the price you want unfurnished, but offer "furnished also available". Then if someone's interested & you can face the trip to Ikea & a day putting it together you might get a good deal, and you can let them have a say in what furniture they get. Prices depend so much on what people are after.

If possible show people the empty place - it always make it look bigger.

PS Just because the tenancy says 6 months don't bank on getting it back then: An "interesting" tenant can delay things, say, 3-4 months...

DrunkenJedi
31-10-2010, 15:50 PM
Ah, sounds great! Is this a common problem? Thanks for the other advice.

Its difficult to say how often tenancies don't end when the LL wants and how many LLs have to go through the courts to gain eviction of a tenant who won't leave.
While it isn't the majority, its hugely beneficial that you avoid getting into such a situation.
To that end, I would advise you to use a reputable local letting agent if this is your first time.
The chances of you getting a bad tenant go up quite a bit when you are a novice and again, if you need to get someone in quick.

If you do go it alone, use a tenant reference agency rather than looking at bits of paper yourself, which can be faked.
Even if you do go it alone, I would speak with a few letting agents on how to best prepare the home for the market you are aiming at. They are often a wealth of information.
Make sure all your paperwork is in order and even if you don't furnish the property, get a professional inventory done. It can save you lots of money and troubles and the cost is quite small relatively.

Read, read and read all you can and make sure you understand everything about what you are embarking on before you commit to anything.
If in doubt, its better to have an empty property than have a tenant who is causing you trouble/losses and doesn't want to leave.

Regarding furnished/unfurnished - in my experience, there is little difference in rent between the two, if any at all.
The market rent for your home and its location will largely determine what rent you can charge however it is furnished and however wonderful it is.

Drpepper
31-10-2010, 16:03 PM
Thanks some good advice coming, I fully intend to use a letting agent as the property is some 180 miles away and I have zero experience of lettings!. I'm thinking furnished as we will use it occasionally until about Feb' then probably let it for 6 months or so.

Brb
31-10-2010, 16:52 PM
A way of limiting the possibility of ending with a "bad tenant" is to be up front and tell them it really is only for six months. Ensure your LA doesn't tell Ts that it's a six month contract, to see how things get on and LL is looking to renew (normal guff from LAs).

I wish I can put LAs on a lie-detector whilst viewing.

Regarding unfurnished/furnished given your plans I would say furnished. Nobody wants to pack up their stuff every six months, from the sounds of things you need a T looking for 6 month getaway to ensure they will move out at the end of it. A T told by LA that you have long term investment plans will rightly feel cheesed off when given their S21.

westminster
31-10-2010, 17:03 PM
Thanks some good advice coming, I fully intend to use a letting agent as the property is some 180 miles away and I have zero experience of lettings!. I'm thinking furnished as we will use it occasionally until about Feb' then probably let it for 6 months or so.
Use an agent who is well-established, and a member of a professional body such as ARLA.

Ask the agent whether furnished/unfurnished is better for your target market. If furnished is better, you could also ask them to show you comparable properties to see the type of furnishings other landlords put in (and make yours nicer! - remember, you're competing with others to get the best tenants).

Drpepper
31-10-2010, 17:04 PM
Thanks Brb & westminster, are LA's really that devious - thanks for the heads up as I would have trusted them 100%. Is there anybody that can recommend a good one in the Bacup area?

What's a S21?

theartfullodger
31-10-2010, 17:11 PM
What's a S21?

Oh dear: Dr Pepper,


You need some education dear sir.. Try this


http://www.rla.org.uk/landlord/courses/course1.shtml

or similar from NLA..


Education expensive?? Try ignorance (No offence, which is where you are right now...).

westminster
31-10-2010, 17:22 PM
Thanks Brb & westminster, are LA's really that devious - thanks for the heads up as I would have trusted them 100%. Is there anybody that can recommend a good one in the Bacup area?

What's a S21?
You will be less likely to get tripped up by an agent if you know more about the landlord's legal obligations, and a bit about L&T law.

This forum's a very good way to learn, and here's a few links to help you on your way.
http://www.letlink.co.uk/letting-factsheets/factsheets/factsheet-11-landlords-repairing-obligations.html
http://www.letlink.co.uk/letting-factsheets/factsheets/factsheet-21-section-21-notice-requiring-possession-of-an-assured-shorthold-tenancy.html
http://mobile.shelter.org.uk/get_advice/repossession/mortgage_arrears/renting_out_the_property/Top_ten_tips_for_becoming_a_landlord
http://www.landlordlawblog.co.uk/
http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_advice/renting_and_leasehold/private_tenancies/assured_shorthold_tenancies

It may seem daunting, but it's a really bad idea to rent a property without knowing the legal basics.

Drpepper
31-10-2010, 17:26 PM
Oh dear: Dr Pepper,


You need some education dear sir.. Try this



or similar from NLA..


Education expensive?? Try ignorance (No offence, which is where you are right now...).

Oh I totally agree, I know nothing about letting hence why I'm here. Basically I have purchased a property in an area near family with spare cash I happen to have at the moment - so it owes me nothing as such, but despite all the doom and gloom at the moment I would rather have my money in property than a bank etc. I just want to maybe let it, as we won't use it much, and provide a bit of a return on investment - it's not essential though.

Thanks for the link I'm on it.

theartfullodger
31-10-2010, 17:30 PM
My conscience just reminded me that when I started letting property I knew even less that yourself (i.e. I failed even to ask for advice..). Best of luck, sure it will work out fine,,, just be careful, read a lot & take advice..

(PS I lost money in a couple of early years...)

westminster
31-10-2010, 17:47 PM
My conscience just reminded me that when I started letting property I knew even less that yourself (i.e. I failed even to ask for advice..).
Yup, me too. And I don't think it was a coincidence that my first tenant was the worst tenant I ever had, and I ended up taking him to court.

thomo
10-11-2010, 14:09 PM
Hi all,

I am a landlord and would appreciate some advice on the property I am renting out. I advertised my property as furnished, after my tenant moved in they asked if I would remove some items which I did.

My tenant has said the cooker isn’t working properly (burning things on bottom of oven and not cooking things on top!) and asked would this be something I will replace. I am not keen to replace the cooker as it is not even 3 years old. Am I legally liable to replace the cooker as there is no mention of it in the tenancy agreement?

The cooker has been Gas Safe Tested. However I have not been to inspect the cooker yet as I wanted to check where I stand first.

(I have seen on another answer to a question on the forum that the landlord has no statutory obligation to repair kitchen appliances, so it comes down to what is agreed in the contract – and as there is no mention in the contract).

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Many thanks :)

jjlandlord
10-11-2010, 15:50 PM
To my (admittedly limited) knowledge, as nothing is specified in the TA, LL has no obligation to repair provided white goods, but he should be responsible for their replacement... Surely, provided said replacement is not caused by T's actions.
Was the condition of the cooker at the time T moved in?

thomo
10-11-2010, 16:03 PM
Immaculate and working

jjlandlord
10-11-2010, 20:49 PM
However I have not been to inspect the cooker yet as I wanted to check where I stand first.

Time to inspect that oven, I'd say...
In the best case T does not use it correctly (who knows!), in the worst case one heating part broke down. Again, in the latter case my understanding is that you have no obligation to repair.

Solent Watcher
10-11-2010, 21:23 PM
Interesting one!! Was the cooker on the inventory and was it repair or replacment by LL?? Gas safety does not mean necessarily that you are responsibile for it merely that it is safe to use. If it is on the inventory BUT was given to them in good order then unless they can demonstrate that it has become "worn out" rather than abused I suggest not your problem. . If finally you do have to replace then certainly in my area you can pick up refurbs for £60 - £80 with six month warranty although a gas test needed but that would be needed in all circumstances for "replacement". Legal experts will give better guidance but my instinct (as a Landlord!!) "you broke it you fix it"

thomo
10-11-2010, 22:13 PM
It was listed in the inventory but not said if repair or replace by LL. Yes good idea I will inspect the cooker and take it from there, however if/when I suggest a fix/refurb they maybe happy to replace with new themselves, and to be honest my instinct thinks there is nothing wrong with the cooker apart from being on the cheaper side of the scale mind not that cheap £200 brand new not 3 years ago, my worry is what next wont they like ... washing machine, fridge freezer.... etc...etc

sportbilly
16-11-2010, 11:20 AM
Hello,

Hopefully somebody can help me. I recently experienced the break up of a long term relationship, which resulted in having to seek new accomodation. After looking at a few places I found one that was advertised with a local letting agent, had a look and liked it. The flat was advertised as fully furnished. I successfully applied for it and gave two weeks notice of a moving in date (which was to be 12th November), on that day I went to letting agents, signed tenancy agreements, paid fees (over £1000), and received the inventory, which had been taken on 8/11/10. The inventory listed 2 sofas, 1 double bed, mattress and headboard, and bedroom furniture and a dining table and 4 chairs. I took the day off work in order to move my belongings in to the flat. Upon getting to the flat at 11am, I found that the flat only had the dining table and 4 chairs, there was no sign of the rest of the furniture. I immediately phoned the letting agents to inform them, they said that they would get in touch with the landlord and get back to me. They then phoned me back to tell me that the previous tenant had his own furniture so the landlord removed his furniture and put it into storage, and hadn't brought it back. The letting agents said they would get back to me that day and let me know what was happening. At around 5pm I received a call back from them saying they were unable to get hold of the landlord, and so I wouldnt be getting any furniture that day. I told them that I could probably find somewhere to stay for that night only. She said they would sort it out the next day. Saturday morning came and I found myself in the empty flat waiting for them to call, which they didn't so i phoned them at around 10am. The lady at the letting agents said she would phone the landlord to find out what was happening. She phoned me back to say that the landlord was going to the lock-up where the furniture was stored and would get back to them, she said she would then get back to me. I knew that they closed at 12pm, so by 11.50am when i hadnt heard from them, i phoned them again. I was told that they couldnt get hold of the landlord, and it might be the case that the landlord was bringing it round. I asked if i was supposed to wait in an empty flat all day on the off chance that he came. She said that she would phone him back and tell him that he could just enter the flat with the furniture with my permission, which was fine. I left the flat at 3pm (after sitting on the floor for around 5 hours), and went back to the flat at 7.30pm, and still no furniture, i then went back to the flat again on sunday and still no furniture! I phoned the letting agent on Monday morning, to be told that the landlord had left them a message over the weekend to say that the furniture is dirty and needs a clean, and it will be about another week before i can get any furniture. I asked the letting agent if I was expected to be paying rent on a property that I cant move into as I have no furniture (through there mistake), she said that she would have to get back to me after speaking to her manager. This was about 11am on Monday and ive not heard anything since!! Any ideas anyone??

DrunkenJedi
16-11-2010, 13:12 PM
I know this is late to tell you this, but a pre-move in inspection is always better than some kind of document to tell you about contents and condition.
Did you actually see the property before you agreed to take it and handing over the readies?

Although there is no agreed or accepted definition on what "furnished" means, since you have an inventory that lists at least a bed that is usable, it is reasonable that you took such steps to make the new property your home immediately and that staying somewhere else would not have been something you factored in.

IANAL but I think you could quite reasonably claim compensation for not being able to use the property "as advertised and documented" and this would be for whatever the rent is for the period you have been unable to use it, in my opinion.

The LL seems dozy, disorganized or inept and so, don't expect a quick reply on this from him.

Sad S
17-11-2010, 09:53 AM
Please tell us what has happened since Sunday.

Precisely what furniture is in the flat at the moment?

Are there carpets and curtains?

It's difficult to tell from the dense text of your original post, but if very basic furniture were provided would you still want to move in?

What additional furnishing do you regard as essential?

johnjw
17-11-2010, 10:02 AM
You have had five days without furniture and this is clearly annoying and unacceptable. You had a right to expect that the furnished flat would have at least all the items listed in the inventory. The missing items are absolutely essential and you have had to move temporarily to other accommodation.
I would take photographs and have someone in to witness the present state of the accommodation. I would write a letter to the agent detailing your complaints and making clear that are having to pay for alternative accommodation and that you will be seeking compensation.
I agree with DrunkenJedi that the LL must be incompetant, but he and his agent would have to be stupid not to see that you have a point. In addition to being correct procedure, it will be much cheaper to supply the missing items than get into an argument they can't win.

Sad S
17-11-2010, 11:26 AM
there is carpets and blinds, and a dining table, and that is all. I still want the flat, i'm just not happy about having to pay rent etc on a flat that I consider unlivale at the moment, as the promised furniture has not materialised!

So nothing has happened since Sunday with regard to the furniture?

Westminster's advice is very sound.

You could try being bold, go and park yourself in the Agent's office, and refuse to shift until they sort out a bed at least for you.

Alternatively beg or borrow a camping mat and a sleeping bag, and just wait patiently for the furniture you have been promised: at least you would be in a position to move in. Sofas could take longer to sort out, especially if the landlord or the agents are telling the truth about having them cleaned.

Did you sign to say you accepted the inventory, when most of the stuff wasn't actually there?

sportbilly
17-11-2010, 12:36 PM
no movement since sunday with furniture, except for them to tell me that it needs cleaning. I asked about a rent rebate on monday, they said they would get back to me and they havent as yet.

I havent signed the inventory yet, and still have that with the missing items listed. It just grates that they are so ineffiecient, and really dont seem to care.

westminster
17-11-2010, 12:40 PM
blimey, this isn't the most friendly of forums is it!

westminster:
(BTW, why did you sit on the floor for five hours when there are dining chairs?) - have you ever sat on a dining chair for more than an hour, it is not the most comfortable of things, but I take your point!
My dining table doubles as my desk, so I spend several hours a day sitting on a dining chair.


What I dont understand is if i brought a car in good faith, and they gave me only the steering wheel, and said id have to wait for the other parts, everybody would be saying thats unacceptable, but it seems ok to advertise a flat as furnished, sign an agreement for a furnished flat, and pay for a furnished flat, only to be given an unfurnished flat!

I didn't say it was acceptable or okay; I advised you in terms of what I believe to be the basic legal position, which is surely more helpful than expressions of sympathy or outrage. The main thing you are paying rent for is exclusive possession of the flat, not a few bits of furniture. Of course you need a bed, and the LL contracted to provide one, but IMO you should mitigate your losses by buying a futon, because that is cheaper than the cost of a hotel.

If you'd prefer to believe that you're entitled to end the contract and that you have a viable claim for return of all the rent paid in advance and any associated costs for LL's breach, then feel free to do so.

mind the gap
17-11-2010, 13:46 PM
There is of course Freecycle - and lots of charities who provide decent furniture to those who cannot afford new.

DrunkenJedi
17-11-2010, 14:00 PM
I wouldn't wait for the dreary bozo LL or the bozo agent.

Take action yourself without further delay to allay the idea that you are not mitigating your losses.

Get some form of bed/futon asap and deduct the cost of this from the next rent, or get one free as has been suggested.
Deduct also an amount for the time you have not had use of the property (and had to live elsewhere) and the wasted time you have have spent waiting around for the LL to deliver the furniture that should have been there in the first place,

I would say this additional compensation is worth 40-50% of the monthly rent - a home with no bed can't be lived in all reasonableness.

Tell the agent and the LL that you are doing this and why.

If you have time, go to a Citizens Advice Bureau or the local tenant support officer (correct name?) at your council for advice on what you could reasonably deduct.
Maybe do some searches to see what information is available on the subject.

You have a document that was part of a deal - the deal was broken by the other side.
In my opinion, you have just cause to be compensated.

DrunkenJedi
17-11-2010, 14:21 PM
My dining table doubles as my desk, so I spend several hours a day sitting on a dining chair.

There's 2 things here.

1. I think there is a difference between what the above and what the OP was doing.
Sitting around for hours doing nothing is not easy or comfortable and quickly becomes tiring.
When you are doing things at desk/table, your mind is focused elsewhere and the lack of comfort of the chair is not noticed very much or as much.

2. Just because you and others are fine with sitting on a dining chair for hours, doesn't mean someone else will be too.
We do not know the reason why they find it uncomfortable enough to prefer to sit on the floor instead.

I would have thought that it would have been better for the OP to have made arrangements for the LL to call the OP say 1/2 hour before going over to the property, than to go and sit around for hours without any guarantee that the LL would arrive with the furniture.

westminster
17-11-2010, 14:53 PM
Get some form of bed/futon asap and deduct the cost of this from the next rent, or get one free as has been suggested.
Deduct also an amount for the time you have not had use of the property (and had to live elsewhere) and the wasted time you have have spent waiting around for the LL to deliver the furniture that should have been there in the first place...

Tell the agent and the LL that you are doing this and why.
No. T cannot arbitrarily deduct 'compensation' from the rent - this must either be negotiated with the LL or ordered by a court. My suggestion regarding the futon is different because that is an emergency measure to mitigate losses which would otherwise be incurred by staying at a hotel.

sportbilly
17-11-2010, 16:05 PM
thank you all for your feedback, i've just been informed that my furniture will be with me by Friday. Do I now just let it lie, or do I proceed with any action regarding the week that they didnt provide furniture?

johnjw
17-11-2010, 16:53 PM
It seems that you have had real costs as well as considerable inconvenience.
Your LL has not taken your plight seriously. A good LL would have been quick with an apology and would have been at your door with emergency furniture within the day.
If the furniture does arrive on Friday, then I would suggest that you write off the inconvenience but ask for your real costs (eg. B&B) to be reimbursed.

westminster
17-11-2010, 17:07 PM
Do I now just let it lie, or do I proceed with any action regarding the week that they didnt provide furniture?
If you want to take it further, you must first negotiate with the LL. Legal action is always the last resort.

MrJohnnyB
18-11-2010, 14:17 PM
I wouldnt steam in with taking legal action straightaway. 1) it will strain relationships with LL. 2) It may look bad in court.

If I were the OP, and furniture arrives when it does, discuss with LL your costs incurred and discuss an amicable solution.

sportbilly
18-11-2010, 18:14 PM
Well, I was promised furniture by 5.30pm today, and surprise surprise it's now 6.15 and no furniture! More wasted hours..... Ahhhhh

mind the gap
18-11-2010, 18:20 PM
Well, I was promised furniture by 5.30pm today, and surprise surprise it's now 6.15 and no furniture! More wasted hours..... Ahhhhh

I thought you said it was coming on/by Friday?

sportbilly
18-11-2010, 19:49 PM
Letting agent contacted me to say landlord would deliver between 4.30-5.30 today.

realestateagentsarecrap
19-11-2010, 11:47 AM
we are having the same problem but from the tenant side.
We have asked the real estate to inspect the oven several times each week and they just say that they need to get in touch with the landlord.

The gas stove tops dont work. The timer has been taken out and just doesnt exist, and the knobs for temperature and fan aren't accurate and only work on one setting.

We have suspected a gas leak and have reported it 7 days ago and followed up many times since but no repsonse from the real estate.

So from a tenants view, I would personally say to inspect the oven first before replacing or jumping to conculsions.

Solent Watcher
19-11-2010, 22:32 PM
Was a working gas cooker part of the inventory? Completely unacceptable from my perspective to give tenants a cooker that does not work and may in itself be unsafe. Certainly a "working" gas cooker is part of the gassafe check!! Do you hold a current Gassafe certificate if yes what was the date? If you suspect a gas leak the Agent has a "legal duty" to deal with it he cannot ignore. Suggest put it in writing and take it to him or post with certifcate of posting or better (although a bit more expensive!!) recorded delivery. Give him a maximum of 24 hours to deal then if no action go to the local council and report both the problem and the fact that the agent has refused to do anything about it.

At the end of the day this about your well being.

Snorkerz
20-11-2010, 01:22 AM
we are having the same problem but from the tenant side.
We have asked the real estate to inspect the oven several times each week and they just say that they need to get in touch with the landlord.

The gas stove tops dont work. The timer has been taken out and just doesnt exist, and the knobs for temperature and fan aren't accurate and only work on one setting.

We have suspected a gas leak and have reported it 7 days ago and followed up many times since but no repsonse from the real estate.

So from a tenants view, I would personally say to inspect the oven first before replacing or jumping to conculsions.I suspect you are in the US? You are extremely welcome here, but be aware that this site is for the English/Welsh market, where laws are almost certainly different.

In the UK a gas leak would be attended to within 1 hour by the gas company.

p_cas
20-11-2010, 09:51 AM
.............We have suspected a gas leak and have reported it 7 days ago and followed up many times since but no repsonse from the real estate..........

I'm amazed that anyone who suspects a gas leak would try contacting an estate agent and then wait 7 days??? If you honestly suspect a leak there's an emergency number to ring, 0800 111 999

HMOLandlord
04-12-2010, 10:34 AM
Hello

I was just wondering if anyone knew what the accepted life expectancy of items like carpets, laminate flooring, blinds, sofas etc are? I have a small disagreement with a tenant regarding blinds which are only a couple of years old and I believe a good quality blind should have a life expectancy of at least 8 years plus?

Strange question I know

Thank you

Springfields
04-12-2010, 10:41 AM
What type is it and whats wrong?

theartfullodger
04-12-2010, 11:56 AM
See some guidance...
http://www.lettingsinventoryclerk.co.uk/9.html

Interesting that it depends on expectations based on tenants - so couple with 10 screaming kids under 12 would be expected to "wear 'n tear" more that one quiet single 65-yr old spinster...

Which is yours??

newlandlord2011
20-12-2010, 20:36 PM
Hello everyone,

I read through (some of admittedly - there were over 100 replies and I got a bit lost!) a thread that dates back to 2007 with regards to what constitutes a furnished/unfurnished apartment.

As I will (eventually) be a non-resident landlord (am currently working through the tax/HRMC info), and unlikely to be returning for a few years - apart from periodic returns to see my family, I'd be quite happy to leave behind kitchen utensils such as plates; pans; cutlery; kettle; toaster etc.. my question is - if a plate (or other item) were to be broken, would it be up to me to replace it?

From what I gather, this would be the case but just want some clarity. As a first time landlady to be, I thought it would be 'nice' for me to leave such things for my tenants to use. None of them are particularly expensive/of any sentimental value to me and I don't expect (perhaps I am being naive) tenants to have a full complement of kitchenware!

What are your thoughts on this? Is it more hassle than its worth? Can I write a clause in the AST that says that tenants will have to replace at their own cost certain items?

Thanks in advance for your responses

theartfullodger
20-12-2010, 20:43 PM
Just have a full & complete inventory done at start & end of tenancy.. following the standard processes good (ah, but how to find one..) agents and sensible landlords follow...

Suggest also lots of photos or video..

jfmaj
05-01-2011, 17:10 PM
What are the relative advantages and disadvantages of letting a place furnished or unfurnished? Am in the process of letting out a flat and budget is short so unfurnished seems a good idea. Also tenants who've moved their own furniture in may stay longer. Incidentally It already has white goods, microwave, and built in wardrobes -does that mean it is technically part furnished?

alexmaark
10-03-2011, 21:46 PM
Rent statement, "empty"means has been to paint the walls, this is it. No carpets, curtains or white goods. Have little or no demand for unfurnished property market in the short-term AST.

Moderator1
28-04-2011, 15:34 PM
Several largely similar questions on separate threads have been merged into this thread (hence the repetitive nature of answers).