One third of private tenants would not tell their landlord if they did significant damage to their rental property, fresh research shows, acting as a timely reminder that you, as a landlord, should conduct periodic inspections throughout each tenancy, ideally quarterly, or at least bi-yearly, to ensure that the condition of your property is in a reasonable state and that your tenants are complying with the tenancy agreement.
A YouGov survey commissioned by TheHouseShop.com has revealed that 33% of private tenants would not inform their landlord if they caused major damage to their rental property, with 15% admitting that they would attempt to repair the damage themselves – with the landlord none the wiser.
Of the honest respondents who would own up to the damages, 24% said that they would offer to pay the full repair bill, 7% would offer a contribution to the repair bill, and 27% would wait and see if they needed to pay anything.
Nick Marr, co-founder of TheHouseShop.com said: “While the vast majority of tenants will not actively try to do damage to a property, accidents do happen, and even well-meaning and reliable tenants can end up inflicting significant damage during their tenancy.”
Marr advises landlords to encourage an “open and honest” relationship with their tenants so that tenants do not feel afraid or nervous about reporting any damages as soon as they happen.
He continued: “Having a direct relationship with your tenants, as opposed to using a third party agent or management service, can be a great way to build trust and avoid any nasty surprises further down the line.
“However, it is important to remember that landlords should always conduct thorough checks and references on any potential tenants before they move into the property. That way you can hopefully avoid the nightmare tenant horror stories that so many landlords can recall in an instant.”