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Landlord - Repairs to external building

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My sister is currently renting a first floor two bed flat, where one of the bedrooms and bathrooms is located on a bridge/above a driveway to the block of apartments.

A couple of weeks ago, part of the cladding had fallen off from under the bridge and some of the insulation (wool-like-material) was hanging down. 


The management company arranged for the rest of the cladding and insulation has been removed, leaving the bedroom (her son's bedroom) and bathroom very cold, especially night. My sister has had to turn the heating up very high just to make it comfortable for her young son, and is worried about a very high electric bill. 


When my sister enquired about this, the letting agent confirmed the cladding and insulation will not be repaired for another few weeks, due to being an insurance claim.


Firstly - the property management company did not notify the letting agent about the removal of cladding/insulation (and in turn my sister, the tenant).

Secondly, my sister is worried about having a high electric bill due to the missing cladding/insulation.


Is the landlord/property management company liable for paying toward the additional electric bill cost whilst the cladding has been removed?


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I think the answer is yes. Clearly you made a contract on a particular basis for a flat in a particular condition. The condition deteriorated and so there is a risk of extra expense and I would have thought that the landlord then would be liable for that.

A problem is that it's always a bit tricky falling out with your landlord. How long has she been there? Is she happy to stay there?

I wonder what the extra heating bill will be? Although it's always useful cash, it may not be a huge amount. I'm not suggesting that you should sit back and accept it – but on the other hand sometimes there is a balance to be made and if you are dealing with your home and an uncooperative landlord, there may be a lot to risk if you start to press the case for compensation of 20 or 30 quid.

On the other hand, this has happened at a bad time and I can imagine that things will get delayed because of insurance companies trying to avoid liability and then Christmas getting in the way. Something that should easily only take a couple of weeks and drag out right through into February or March.

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As it's only a bedroom and bathroom that's cold because of the insulation being removed how much extra heating is needed? Does her son have a disability or medical condition? How old is he?


People I know mostly don't keep children's (or their own) bedrooms heated at night except in the most severe weather (but maybe that's just the people I know who grew up before people had central heating!).


Does she have a SmartMeter she can use to work out a good estimate of the extra electricity usage?

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The important thing you need to remember here and for the future while in that property is everything to do with that specific property the buck squarely stops with the Landlord of that property.


The Letting Agent has been employed by the Landlord of that property to manage it on the Landlords behalf but depending on the agreement the Landlord signed with the Letting Agent repair up to a certain cost or emergency they would carry out but over a certain cost they need Landlord authority/permission for these costs.


So it is irrespective who removed the cladding & insulation and the Letting Agents excuse that it needs to go through insurance is not your problem but the Letting Agents/Landlords as that is nothing to do with you.


Your property should be Wind & Water Tight and at present due to this removal of the Cladding & Insulation it is not.


As the rooms affected are over a driveway that has had this Cladding & Insulation removed and at this time of year of course it is going to cost extra to heat those areas so you need to make this clear to the Letting Agent and that you wish reimbursed for these extra costs and you require a timescale for these works to be completed


Couple of links:



Private renting as a tenant - repairs, rent increases and arrears, settling disputes, deposits and your rights and responsibilities.



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