Ask Lorraine – Tamworth tenants have damaged white goods

Ask Lorraine

Four months ago I purchased a new washing machine for one of my buy to let properties. The washing machine had the usual one year warranty.

ask loz tenants damaged washing machine
ask loz tenants damaged washing machine

Three weeks ago one of the tenants contacted me saying a leak had developed. When the engineer investigated, he left a report stating that it was a hole which had been caused by coins. The fault would not be covered under the warranty.

Who is liable for these financial costs?

Thank you Jem


Lorraine’s Answer – Hi Jem,

I would suggest that the tenants would be liable to pay for the repair of the washing machine especially since it was their negligence that caused the fault.

Some tenancy agreements will have a clause which stipulates – White Goods supplied by landlords to be repaired by landlords. However, where landlords require tenants to carry out any  repairs they should include a provision within the tenancy agreement.

Good luck whichever course of action you decide to take.

Until next time.

ask lorraine washing machine
ask lorraine washing machine


I want to share my thoughts and opinions on the real issues affecting the Tamworth property market, warts and all. If you want someone to tell you the real story about the Tamworth property market, be it good, bad or indifferent, then maybe you should start reading my blog regularly.

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Repair/Replacement of White Goods for Tamworth Landlords

We are often asked  “who is responsible for the repair or replacement of White Goods supplied by a landlord at the start of  a tenancy?”

What are “White Goods?”

white goods
white goods

White goods are washing machines, fridge-freezers, tumble dryers and dishwashers, all traditionally coloured white.


There is no statutory duty on the  landlord to repair/replace white goods, however, there may be a contractual obligation on either party. If a provision has been included in the tenancy agreement, this will have to be taken into consideration.

Section 11 of the Landlord and Tenant Act sets out a landlord’s repairing obligations during a tenancy. So where the landlord has supplied White Goods, are they responsible for the repair if they break down? The act does not specifically mention White Goods,  thus not making  landlords responsible.

But, any electrical appliances that are supplied by the landlord must be safe pursuant to the Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994. Where they have been supplied they must be of a reasonable standard.

Decide who is to take responsibility to repair/replace  White Goods  and include a comprehensive provision within the tenancy agreement.

Prior to a tenancy commencing, ensure that tenants are fully aware of any provisions made in the tenancy agreement. The last thing you want is a tenant later being advised they have to fork out for White Good repairs!


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Ask Lorraine – My Tamworth tenants shower fault

Ask Lorraine -My Tamworth tenants shower fault

I allowed my tenant to install a shower over the bath approx. 6 months ago,  he used a certified tradesman and paid for the installation himself.

Two weeks ago a part inside the unit failed causing water to leak into the kitchen below.

ask lorraine shower fault
ask lorraine shower fault

The first I knew about the leak, was when my tenant sent the bill for the call out charge of  £116.00 for me to pay. He’s also sent me a quote to replace the shower and repair the kitchen ceiling, a hefty quote at £850.00.



Who should be taking responsibility for this, me or my tenant?

Thanks Ady

Lorraine’s Answer –

Hi Ady, If your tenant arranged and paid for the installation of the shower, the  contract will be between your tenant and the installer. I do however think you should take charge of the situation, after all it’s your property. Why on earth would you allow a tenant  to find their own trades person and install a shower?

There should be a one year warranty on the shower so replacement should be covered.  That’s assuming that the tradesman carried out the installation properly.

Speak to your tenant and the installer (confirm details and warranty period) and take it from there.

shower blog
shower blog

You should have landlords insurance for the kitchen ceiling, you can’t ask your tenant to pay for this, unless they were remiss in choosing the installer.

My advice – In future do not allow your tenants to carry out works themselves unless you are there to oversee and sign off any work.

Until next time.

As always any thoughts are always welcome, or 07531484956





One in 31 rental properties in the Tamworth area will be illegal in 2018

As the winter months draw in and the temperature starts to drop, keeping one’s home warm is vital. Yet, with the price of gas and electricity rising quicker than a Saturn V rocket and gas, oil and electricity taking on average 4.4% of a typical Brit’s pay packet (and for those Brit’s with the lowest 10% of incomes, that rockets to an eye watering 9.7%), whether you are a tenant or homeowner, keeping your energy costs as low as possible is vital for the household budget and the environment as a whole.

For the last 10 years, every private rental property must have an Energy-Performance-Certificate (EPC) rating.  The property is given an energy rating, very similar to those on washing machines and fridges with the rainbow coloured graph, of between A to G (A being the most efficient and G the worst). New legislation comes in to force next spring (2018) for English and Welsh private landlords making it illegal to let a property that does not meet a certain energy rating. After the 1st of April next year, any new tenant moving into a private rented property or an existing tenant renewing their tenancy must have property with an energy performance rating of E or above on the property’s EPC and the new law will apply for all prevailing tenancies in the spring of 2020. After April 2018, if a landlord lets a property in the ‘F’ and ‘G’ ratings (i.e. those properties with the worst energy ratings) Trading Standards could fine the landlord up to £4,000.

Personally, I have grave apprehensions that many Tamworth landlords may be totally unaware that their Tamworth rental properties could fall below these new legal minimum requirements for energy efficiency benchmarks. Whilst some households may require substantial works to get their Tamworth property from an F/G rating to an E rating or above, my experience is most properties may only need some minor work to lift them from illegal to legal. By planning and acting now, it will mitigate the need to find tradespeople in the spring when every other Tamworth landlord will be panicking and paying top dollar for work to comply.

Whilst there is money and effort involved in upgrading the energy efficiency of rental property, a property that is energy efficient will have greater appeal to tenants and other buy-to-let landlords/investors and this will enable you to obtain higher rents and sale price (when you come to sell your investment).

So, how many properties are there in the area that are F and G rated .. well quite a few in fact. Looking at the whole of the Tamworth Borough Council area, of the 3,476 privately rented properties, there are ..

89 rental properties in the F banding

23 rental properties in the G banding

That means just over one in 31 rental properties in the Tamworth and surrounding area has an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of F or G. From April next year it will be illegal to rent out those homes rated F and G homes with a new tenancy.

Talking with the Energy Assessors that carry out our EPC’s, they tell me most of a building’s heat is lost through draughty windows/doors or poor insulation in the roof and walls. So why not look at your EPC and see what the assessor suggested to improve the efficiency of your property? I can find the EPC of every rental property in Tamworth, so irrespective of whether you are a client of mine or not, don’t hesitate to contact me via email (or phone) if you need some guidance on finding out the EPC rating or need a trustworthy contractor that can help you out?

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