View Full Version : Whose responsibility is it to clear gutters?

26-01-2013, 19:36 PM
Hi, I'm new to being a landlord and am trying to be a good one and ensure the property is well maintained. I do however seem to have some tenants with what I would consider unreasonable demands.

The property is a 3 bed bungalow which was my previous home and had been decorated to a very high standard. We are on our second lot of tenants and they seem to have many problems which we have always acted on quickly and got repaired as soon as possible. The most recent issue is slugs in the house.We provided slug pellets, traps, copper tape and all manner of other slug repelling/killing methods and still the slugs persist. To listen to our tenants they are being over run. I asked a builder to go round and assess for damp issues and to see what we could do to prevent slugs gaining entry. He made various suggestions and we asked him to complete all works recommended. However the feedback we got from him was most concerning. He stated that the tenants are causing a lot of issues themselves with having dirty floors - food waste lying around. Not ventilating the property properly and causing damp in the main bedroom. The solid oak floor is stained black and rotting due to condensation. Also the gutters and hoppers are full of leaves and over flowing onto the walls causing a damp issue in the house which is smelling musty. These tenants seem to be good at complaining and I would like to understand if the gutters being blocked with leaves is something we as landlords need to clear or is it reasonable to expect them to? I might add all the drains were blocked with leaves and food waste and no maintenance has been done in the garden which has also attracted the slugs.

Any help and advice very gratefully received.

26-01-2013, 20:09 PM
It comes under 'tenant like behaviour' where a tenant is expected to deal with everyday problems themselves. I would serve them with a S21 as soon as legally possible to avoid having your property completely wrecked.

26-01-2013, 20:51 PM
Agree with previous poster get rid.

26-01-2013, 21:07 PM
Thanks for your advice. They are out of the AST fixed term and are on a rolling monthly contract. How and what do we say/do for a s21? I did think we were perhaps expecting too much from tenants but your responses have made me feel a bit reassured that we aren't asking them to do anything unreasonable.

26-01-2013, 23:37 PM
If you don't specify responsibilities such as the cleaning of gutters within your AST then it cannot be "assumed" the tenants are responsible. Look at hundreds of posts regarding S.21 service as this forum has about every angle. Just use the search facility.

27-01-2013, 08:38 AM
I always have the gutters cleaned by somebody with a long ladder. I don't think T can be expected to clean gutters and in most cases cannot be relied upon to carry out this task on a regular basis. I include this in the rent.

On the other matters, I'd give them a S21.

27-01-2013, 10:16 AM
Regardless of whose responsibility it is to actually keep the gutters clean, I'd reccomend fitting Hedgehog Gutter Brush (http://www.hedgehoggutterbrush.com/?p=home).

I fitted this last summer at home to a gutter which has caused me problems every winter, and it's been 100% effective this winter in keeping it clear. Not particularly cheap but far better than other 'gutter guard' methods, and certainly very cost-effective versus employing someone to clean the gutters.

I can't comment on longevity as it's only just gone in, but there's a 10-year warranty on it.

Seems particularly ideal for a tenanted property where you can fit and forget it, and not worry whether the building is being damaged by overflowing gutters.