Locks and keys in rented properties can often be a contentious issue, Landlords like to retain control over their properties by holding a set of keys, and tenants don’t like the idea of their landlord, or indeed anyone else, being able to enter their property when they are not there. However, there is a requirement in most tenancies for routine checks to be done to ensure that the landlord’s property and any appliances are being looked after correctly and that there are no unwanted or illegal activities taking place in the property.
So who should and shouldn’t have a set of keys?
It is important to remember that having a set of keys and having a right to access the property are two separate issues. Whilst it can be argued that it makes practical sense for a landlord to hold a set of keys, in case of an emergency or in case they need to ensure that safety of the building or any appliances or furniture, you need to remember that Landlords are not entitled to enter the property without the tenant’s permission.
This is a fundamental right that tenants have which is included in all tenancy agreements by implication, even if not specifically stated in the tenancy agreement.
Additionally, if landlords start entering the property without the tenant’s knowledge or consent, the landlord is in breach of the terms of the tenancy agreement and even if the tenancy agreement says that the landlord can go in when he likes. Any clause like this will be void and unenforceable under the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations.
However, the law also protects landlords by stating that tenants are not permitted to change locks without permission and are also not able to prevent justified landlord access without good reason. Both can be hard to enforce and can cause conflict between the landlord and tenants as ‘reasonable’ and ‘justified’ can mean different things to different people.
How does KeyRing Lettings manage this to protect both the landlord and the tenant?
KeyRing Lettings work with landlords and tenants alike, and our fully managed service includes routine inspections that are detailed in the tenant’s contract meaning that there is no need for you as the landlord to have a set of keys and the tenant can enjoy living in the property as if it were their own.
We carry out routine and periodic inspections of property and appliances and have our own workmen available to carry out any repairs and work needed.
By acting as an intermediary, we find that the relationship between landlord and tenant can run far smoother and happy tenants tend to remain in properties longer which obviously helps landlords secure a steady income and stability.
To find out more about how we can help you manage your property call 01749 681356