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The Top 10 Causes Of Disputes Between Landlords and Tenants


1. Late payment of rent

Perhaps the biggest and most obvious cause for disputes between landlords and tenants is the late payment of rent. The tenant could be withholding rent over other connected disputes that are the fault of the landlord in order to encourage negotiations or the need to address their complaints. Alternatively, the tenant may actually be lacking the funds needed to be paid, or they may be having cashflow problems if it’s a commercial lease.

2. Property damage

Damage to the property can often be the cause of either the wear and tear of time taking effect or the actions of the tenant. The problem is that often disagreements may arise as to which was the exact cause as that may lead to additional costs for either the landlord or tenant based on who’s responsibility it is determined to be.

3. Property repairs

Things like leaking roofs, broken boilers and electrical faults will often need to be repaired by the landlord as per the contractual terms of the tenancy. The problem here often lies in the landlord either failing to acknowledge that the repairs are needed in the first place, or do a poor job of addressing them, thus leading to disagreements between them and the tenant.

4. Dilapidations

In commercial leases it is often the case that the tenant will make certain changes or improvements to the property. This will inevitably run the risk of causing a dispute as the landlord will likely withhold the return of the deposit at the end of the tenancy agreement if the premise is not returned to them in their original state prior to the lease.

5. Notices to tenants

When it comes to notices sent to tenants, disputes will typically arise over one of the parties not following the correct procedure. This could be due to the different wording used by different businesses as well as their method of service used to deliver it – in person, Royal Mail, fax or email. This is important to keep in mind as a service of notice will not be valid unless the intended recipient actually receives the notice. There is also a danger that the tenant could ignore the notice but that is a risk they make for themselves regarding future consequences.

6. Insurance cover

Normally a lease will require the landlord to ensure the premises and to recoup those premiums from a tenant under a service charge. The problem here lies in the fact that landlords can choose any insurer to do this with, which could result in increased prices leading to a raise for dispute by the tenant if they believe that the premise is unreasonably over insured.

7. Service charges

Similarly, to insurance-based disputes, the tenant can argue against the pricing set by the landlord on their service charges if they believe that it has been used for the improvements of the premise instead of upholding its insurance, cleaning, repairs and maintenance costs.

8. Causing a nuisance

Complaints of nuisance are normally caused by the tenant’s activities that result in things like excessive noise, fire or different kinds of hazards, or invasive smells. This will often lead to a written undertaking asking the tenant to stop from the landlord’s solicitor, though further disputes could arise if it is ignored, prompting further action such as evictio

9. Lease assignment

If the tenant wants to leave before the end of their tenancy, they could possibly do so by assigning the property to someone else. Problems however could arise if the new tenant is in a less financially stable position than the previous one which could lead to a reluctancy of acceptance from the landlord.

10. Pets at home

It is typically made clear as to whether pets are allowed in the premises by the landlord prior to the agreement. However, disputes may arise if the tenant disregards this condition or obtains a pet through different circumstances, such as a new requirement for an assistance dog. This can be resolved through negotiations; however, it can also lead to an eviction if no compromise is reached.

Should you require any additional information in relation to Landlord and Tenant Disputes then please get in touch at [email protected] or call us on 0330 127 8888 and our team will be more than happy to help.


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