This weeks Forum Spotlight looks at a Forum post around a tenant wanting to run a childminding business from their rental property.
A landlord posted a query in our Forum about a tenant who had inquired about running a childminding business from the rental property they lived at.
The landlord was keen to hear the views from other landlords about whether this was a good idea.
Response from landlords on our Forum
The landlords on our Forum pointed out that there are several other considerations that the landlord in this case might want to consider, before allowing their tenant to operate as a registered childminder from their rental property.
“The child’s safety has to be considered”
One member responded to the thread by stating that it is not something that they would ever allow their tenant to do, because in their eyes having lots of children in the house would make the house more prone to wear and tear.
They said that in their view, once the landlord agreed to allow the tenant to set up a childminding business, the landlord could face the tenant demanding a whole range of items, from child height rails, blanked sockets and finger safe doors. In her view, running such a business could mean that walls could potentially be damaged for example by buggies, and floors might be damaged also.
She also advised the landlord to consider that if the safety standards of the property are not high enough, then potentially Ofsted may not give its stamp of approval, and this would mean no customers and potentially no rent.
“Prevention is better than cure”
Another member echoed this landlord’s sentiment, by saying that sometimes prevention is better than cure, and that the landlord would do best to avoid what could be ‘unnecessary hassle’ in the long term. This member also raised the point that normally, contracts do not allow a business to be run from a premises. He suggested that if this is not already in the contract, it could be good to add it as an addendum.
“It’s not worth it”
One member even advised this landlord to ‘keep away’ , adding that it would simply not be worth it. She explained that the tenant may want to adapt the property, which could force insurance payments up. There also could be parking problems caused by parents coming to pick their children up – which could result in complaints from the neighbours.
Things to consider
There are many things for this landlord to consider. For example, some mortgage conditions may prevent landlords from operating a business from home. There also could be considerations around insurance to think about, and if the property is in a HMO licensing area, the landlord must make sure first that operating a business of this kind does not breach any of these licence conditions, for example the property must not be overcrowded. It is wise to have a think about how much footfall the childminding business would have, and if it is likely to result in complaints from neighbours, for example if there are lots of cars outside the property all of the time.
What happened next
The member thanked everyone for offering their thoughts on this issue, and said that they plan to say no to the tenant in this case.
- Got your own thoughts on this issue? View the original Forum post and add your opinion here!
- Want to learn more about topics such as setting up and managing a HMO? Check out our Principles of HMO’s course, which this June is also our Course of the Month.