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Ask Ash Your Own Question
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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Hi there I was wondering if you could help as were very desperate

Customer Question

Hi there I was wondering if you could help as we're very desperate with a landlord problem and the property which is our hair salon business.. Our lease ran out 16th of dec 2013 after 5 years of leasing, we are not renewing due to the property being in a bad state of repairs and definitely structural needing a new roof, rendering and a damp course which was promised to us the first year of starting our business that was 5 years ago nothing has ever been done.. We pay £550 PCM and have never missed..because we haven't renewed the contract the landlord has sent in a chartered surveyor from his solicitors which spent an hr at the most at the shop to then send us a letter to charge us 165.00 an hr he reckons 2.5 hrs of his time?? And 1 mile fuel cost under the Claus 3.20 to indemnify the landlord for charges and that under the Claus 3.6.1 it's our responsibility to sort repairs in the shop including structural? The landlord never did it to start with and we can't afford to fight this as we're a young business thank you so much Christine Medcalf
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 4 years ago.

Alex Watts : Hello my name is Alex and I will help you with this. Please note that I am a working Solicitor and may be on and offline as I have to attend Court and meet with clients, even at weekends. As such you may not get an instant response when you reply as this is not an ‘on demand’ live service, but rest assured I will be giving your question my immediate attention upon return. There is no need to wait here, you will get an email when I reply.
Alex Watts : Do you have a full repairing lease please? What does the lease say about renewal?
Customer : As far as I know it's just a standard commercial lease unfortunately it's at work so will pick it up tomorrow and will send what it says..
Customer : Thank you Christine medcalf
Alex Watts : Ok
Customer : Repair 3.6.1
Customer : To repair and maintain the premises and to keep them in good and substantial repair, damage caused by the insured risks excepted to the extent that the landlord recovers the cost of the necessary work from the landlords insurers.
Customer : 3.6.2
Customer : to maintain and keep in good working order and condition all landlords fixtures and fittings and to replace any of them which are beyond repair by suitable items of a similar and modern kind to the landlords reasonable satisfaction.
Alex Watts : Does the landlord have buildings insurance?
Alex Watts : please note I am on the train so may be a delay in my reply.
Customer : Sorry I'm delaying too I'm trying to sort business accounts so I'm juggling today haha, Yes as far as I know he does I remember him saying a while ago, I'm checking to see what it says about renewal the contracts quite big to get through.
Customer : Also the tennant upstairs uses our hot water as it's all attached to the hot water tank (situated in his flat upstairs) and we we're paying out of the business when he was using the hot water as it was an old terraced house and its never been changed he just put a switch in the shop to heat it up.. The problem we had was in the morning we had no water for customers as the guy was using it we have no evidence only his say so that this has changed, to top it off the guys toilet fell off the wall had a massive leak into our shop wrecked our lights in the false ceiling ruined our £300 alarm as this was hidden under the false ceiling and now we have an electric shock when we swith the kitchen light on.
Customer : Apparently we have to go through our insurance for this?... I could be here all day with problems ie rats in the yard etc that he should of sorted according to enviromental I think? But that's another story first things first...
Customer : I can't see anything about renewal? I'll keep looking..
Alex Watts :

Did you pay through the Landlord about buildings insurance please?

Customer : We've paid nothing as yet but we've asked the landlord to pay through his insurance that was about 6 month agony be longer?
Customer : Ago maybe longer?*
Alex Watts :

Sorry, do you pay anything towards the Landlord's insurance?

Customer : No we have our own business insurance we presume he has landlord insurance
Alex Watts :

What does the lease say about buildings insurance?

Customer : Insurance obligations 3.15.1
Customer : not to do anything which prejudices or invalidates any insurance policy in respect of the premises, or any other neighbouring or adjoining property or which may do so or which does or may render any increased or additional premium payable for any of them.
Customer : 3.15.2
Customer : To pay to the landlord on demand the cost of any increased or additional premium which becomes payable in respect of the premises, or any other neighbouring or adjoining property as a result of the occupancy or use of the premises including any referred to in paragraph 3.15.1.
Alex Watts :

Yes but does the Landlord hold building insurance do you know?

Customer : I think he probably will as he has more than 1 property
Alex Watts :

How did it get into a bad state of repair?

Alex Watts :

Was it like that when you moved in?

Customer : Yes my dad is a builder and a few years ago dry lined it to mask the damp problem my dad advised him otherwise but he wouldn't have it therefore the property is getting worse.. We have decorated to the best of our ability to make it look
Customer : Nice for customers but we're only masking the underlining problem.
Customer : The landlord will not spend money!
Alex Watts :

Ok - so everything (apart from the roof) is caused by damp?

Customer : Yes and the water damage caused by the landlords other tenant's toilet falling off the wall upstairs.
Customer : Our terms b4 we signed the contact 5 year ago was that he had to do the damp course up to a year of us starting out he agreed and never did it
Alex Watts :

Did he agree in writing?

Customer : We thought he did we actually thought it was in the contract or that's what we were led to believe.. We can't find it I'm going to ring our solicitors tomorrow to see if they have that in writing.
Alex Watts :


Customer : Just to let you know..It'll be late on by the time I get back to you tomorrow as I'm busy at work I'll not get chance to spk to solicitors until after 3 thank you Alex
Alex Watts :

Sure. I understand.

Customer : Hi there I've not managed to get hold of our solicitor today I've been so busy so by the time I'd finished it was too late he'd gone home.. I'll ring tomorrow now I'm not as busy (not yet anyway) the landlords solicitor has sent us another letter today saying the landlord will pay to have our alarm fixed after the water damage and will pay half towards painting the outside wall of the property? He also goes on to say we must do the repairs everywhere else and the contract must remain the same as the one during the last 5 years.. We are basically being made to do a jobs that has never been done by the landlord it'
Customer : If we sign the contract again as it stands we'll always be paying out for structural work that should of been done years ago..
Alex Watts :

Yes I understand.

Alex Watts :

But let me know what the clauses say

Customer : I've sent you the repairs Claus? What other Claus do you need? I'm asking the solicitor tomorrow if we ever had it in writing the landlords agreement to the damp course done and finished the first year of business, should I be asking anything else? I'm also not happy that all this has slipped through the net at my solicitors office..
Alex Watts :

Yes that is what I need to know.

Customer : Ok will do thanks see you tomorrow
Alex Watts :