Helpful Tips Property Management

Forum Spotlight: Gaining access for repairs with busy tenant

Victoria Barker
Written by Victoria Barker

This week’s Forum Spotlight looks at gaining access to carry out repairs in a property. The landlord posted on our Forum to say that the tenant is unavailable to let him in to the property, to inspect it and to carry out repairs.

The tenant works, and says that he can only be there to let the him in on evenings and weekends. However the agent is only available to inspect the property on Monday to Friday, during office hours.

The landlord said the repairs were not an emergency, but the property has not been inspected for at least a year. They wanted to know what they could do next, and suggested sending the tenant letter giving him 48 hours notice and then suggesting that the agent goes in with a key to carry out the inspection.

They wanted to know what other landlords on our Forum thought about this.

What other landlords said

A regular forum user agreed with what the posted had initially suggested doing, to send the tenant a letter giving 24 hours notice of inspection, explaining that he does not need to be present for the inspection as the agent has a key.

The letter should clearly explain that he is contractually obliged to give the agent access to inspect the property (assuming it is in the AST).

The response from our Landlord Advice Team

“Despite the landlords need to gain access for repairs and inspections as per tenancy agreement, the landlord or agent cannot access the property if the tenant explicitly objects to then doing so.

Under common law the tenant has a right to ‘quiet and peaceful enjoyment’ so i would say approach with caution.

Remind the tenant about the terms of the tenancy agreement and your repair obligations under Section 11 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985.

Reassure the tenant you are only inspecting the fabric of the building and the inspection can be done without the tenant being present as previously suggested by another member”.

Find out more

About the author

Victoria Barker

Victoria Barker

Victoria is the Communications Officer for the RLA.

She is responsible for producing articles for our Campaigns and News Centre, the weekly E-News newsletter and media review, and creating social media content. She also contributes to our members magazine, Residential Property Investor.

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