I have a 3 bedroom semi-detatched house, privately rented, which is currently rented to 3 students, in a university town that has 2 universities. I have owned the property since 2012, and faces a B road (fields opposite) but is essentially in a residential area.
We are not local landlords so have the property fully managed by a well known agency, who are very much on the ball and deal with issues as they have arisen.
The students moved in September and the lease runs till end of July 2019.
There are 20 houses in the small close (8 face the b road and there is a close behind with 12 houses and courtyard parking) where the house is situated, with a large number of them rented.
There is another landlord who owns 3 properties on the close. One is next door to us but is not connected to our semi-detatched property. though there is a footpath between the buildings to the back gardens and this is where the wheelie bins and recycling boxes are kept.
Apparently he has owned this property for some 2 years now.
The other landlords tenants have raised several complaints about my tenants
- saying they throw/leave rubbish all over the front garden,
- they park on the front grass of my property,
- they park around the back where the car spaces are, up on the kerb and block/make it hard for his tenants to get in and out of their car spaces.
- and today they apparently had a party last night and were making noise into the early hours of the morning.
My property has one designated car space, but 3 students these days means 3 cars.
The agents have dealt with the about (except the party as that happened yesterday apparently)
Students have been told verbally and in writing:-
- To park the other 2 cars on the road, not on the front grass (they do not drive on the neigbours lawn,so not sure what their complaint is about - only the kitchen window faces the front of the property or around the back where it makes it difficult for other tenants to access and leave their properties.
- The tenants have been told to ensure rubbish is picked up if blown around, ensure to put out on rubbish days and even to put bins in the back garden if it is an issue on the footpath between the 2 houses - the foot path is wide enough for you to walk down with wheelie bins on either side up against the walls of the houses. They have been told where all the recycling and tips are in the area to get rid of their rubbish if they miss putting out the bins on bin day
Last night they apparently had a party into the early hours of the morning creating noise and disturbing the neighbours and stopping the young children from sleeping.
I cannot verify this as I do not live there. I am told by the other landlord his tenants have made a tape recording.
I have emailed the neighbour whose house is semi-detached to mine to confirm if a party did take place and waiting for their response.
The landlord of the other properties telephoned me today and is threatening to take legal action against me on Monday for not 'stopping' my tenants behaviour.
He works for a council in their housing department and tells me he is a Big Landlord in the neighbouring town.
He is clearly trying to bully me, as he also claimed my property is a House of Mulitple Occupation, which I refute as I had checked with my local council to ensure it was not, and the Management Agents would certainly make sure that the property was compliant in that area if needed.
When we have received a complaint (he first sent a letter via the local council) the managing agents acted on it immediately. The managing agents spoke with and wrote to the students and their guarantors telling them the expectations in behaviour and where they should park cars and pick up rubbish.
The agents have been around/past the house at different times and taken photos and the property has been clear of rubbish.
The students do park on the grass out the front which we have told them not to do,
The other landlords tenants, have been asked if the students do something that is unacceptable please take photos and keep a record so the managing agents can deal with asap.
WE have a 2 photos sent by the other landlords tenants of a car parked on our front grass - but it is my grass, not theirs, and the other car parked up on the kerb around the back which would cause a bit of an issue with people getting in and out, while not excusing this, this has always been the case since we bought the house in 2012 as some properties have 2 car spaces, others one, and a number of the properties are rented to 3 individual people.
We have not received any photos of rubbish all over the place and unless they can categorically state the rubbish belongs to the students - i.e. address etc, then the rubbish could have come from anywhere - it is a busy footpath into the town infront of the house.
My husband drove past the house last week and there was no evidence of rubbish and there was only one car. but the property was tidy outside and the grass looked as if it had been mown. In addition there were no visible ruts in the grass in front of our property.
So my issue is:
- Can we be held responsible for the students behavior
- the neighbours did not call the police out or environmental health for noise
- the other landlord is threatening legal action against us to do something - but exactly what more are we expected to do?
- And if he can take legal action against us, exactly what can he do?
I told the other landlord I will contact the agents and get them to deal with the students. I also asked that if the students were causing such nuisance, why did his tenants not call the police or environmental health, but involve him.
I am at a bit of a loss as to why he is fighting this battle and not advising his tenant to call the Police or environmental health if there is a nuisance.
I told him I was not able to stop my tenants from the enjoyment of their property,anymore than he can his and a party (which he agreed was not unreasonable) which I believe this was the first party and there has never been a complaint about a party before.
any advice - anyone know what legal redress he has against us in a private rental property - I begining to think if the property was occupied by home owners he would be complaining to the mortgage company if they made a noise!
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