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Landlord and tenant question

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If you are a tenant of a housing association and are disabled or elderly and are not able to prune a tree that has overgrown and is now 3 x as tall as a bungalow - do the housing association have a duty to carry out this for you? They have recently said that the tenant is responsible but how can you be if you are not able to? Any help would be appreciated.


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I suspect that they mean that you're meant to hire a gardener to cut the tree.


being responsible doesn't mean that you have to do it yourself, just that you have to get it done.

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Not sure on this one. However is the tree part of the fabric of the house and property? Is the tree now affecting the house itself eg the roots undermining the foundations, the branches in danger of falling over the roof? Maybe if it is affecting the way that the tenant is enjoying the benefits of the rental is being affected then the landlord should be undertaking the work.


Maybe if the 'event' damages the house and the landlord has been notified of the problem any insurance claim the landlord makes may be compromised.


I would examine the contract and read what the details says and move forward from there. Making a reasoned argument may bring benefits.

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I wouldn't say that I'm certain either...


but I think that the following stands to reason well.

in the tenancy agreement that I have it says that maintenance of the garden falls to the tenant, this just involves cutting the grass and weeding the borders -which is ok, I like a nice garden anyway. however if I was not physically able to cut the grass, then it wouldn't be the landlords job to cut the grass, it'd be my job to arrange someone to come around and do the job for me; either a friend, or a professional, and if I employed a gardener then it'd be my job to pay them too.


If it's the tenants job to maintain the garden, then they can't complain to the landlord if the garden gets overgrown and is unusable, sure their enjoyment of the grounds surrounding the house has been removed, but only through their own inaction, it's their fault not the landlords.


Further to that, should anything happen, such as the tree destroys the property BECAUSE the tenant has failed to maintain the property's garden then that'd be down to the tenants neglect.-in that case, the landlords building insurance is invalidated because the tenants failed to perform duties that are on their side of the contract. -who do you suppose the landlord is going to 'come after'. The tenant was meant to maintain the garden, didn't and damage resulted because they didn't do what they were meant to.


Basically, I would think that the situation is this. IF your contract says that you are responsible for the maintenance of the garden, then you are responsible, to either do it yourself, get a friend to do it, or hire a professional and bear the costs.


IF your contract does not (explicitly) say that you are responsible, then you could assume that the landlord is responsible, and they should either do it themselves, get a friend to do it, or hire a professional at their cost. -or perhaps offer to go halves with the landlord. -but likewise you could assume it's meant to be your job.


IF the contract says that the landlord is responsible, then tell them to do their job.


the fourth case which is the weird one is if (like me) you contract says that you are responsible for the garden, but also says that you are not allowed to remove trees, you might be able to argue with the landlord that it puts an unreasonable cost on you to have to pay a professional to do maintenance each and every year. to prune tree's -you could pay once and remove the tree, the problem and the on going cost but are prevented from doing so.


You might also need to know who's tree it is, does the tree grow in your garden, or in the street next to your house, or in a neighbours garden. -because then it might not be your responsibility at all -other than to allow access for the tree's owner or tree's owners contractors to your property so that they could do the work needed.



more specific to this case -being elderly or infirm...

a search on google suggests that a lot of councils do provide maintenance services for those over 65, or whom are disabled.




would probably be best to add the region that you live in to that search and figure out what you can find. for your locality -it could be that the service is available but the person that you spoke to just didn't really know about it.

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ONe other thing comes to mind. If you have a legal protection Insurance Policy, there are helplines that give one access to trained solicitors. Even if they can't appoint a solicitor they always give you information on the law. get phoning and ask if you have a policy.

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