Décor in Rental Property – by Bolton Letting Agents – Westpine Property Lettings
Decoration can often be a source of dispute between Landlords and Tenants at the end of tenancies. Disagreement can arise over condition and changes to the specification during tenancy.
Landlords – what should you ensure?
Firstly it is important to understand that in decorating your property you should try to keep colours neutral rather than to your own taste. Strong colours and patterns can be a matter of individual taste and some prospective tenants may be influenced by colours which they cannot tolerate. Numerous surveys have established that whilst neutral colours such as white or magnolia are not everybody’s favourite colour, they are usually acceptable colours which most furniture will match with.
It is essential that landlords, or their managing agent, record detailed descriptions of the decoration within the inventory and schedule of condition. In the event of any dispute it is not sufficient to describe “painted walls” – this must show the colour and the condition. Tenants often disregard the tenancy agreements and assume that they can decorate the property to their own tastes. Whilst in some cases this can improve your property and be a benefit, there are also as many cases where the tenant has selected to decorate in strong or bizarre colours which would be off-putting to future tenants. In such a situation it is essential to have a before description of the decoration, ideally with photographs, in order to enforce the decoration to be returned to its original state, deducting from the deposit if necessary.
Tenants – what should you do if you wish to decorate?
Westpine Lettings advise their tenants that they should always check their tenancy agreement and contact the managing agent to advise of any intended changes before they are carried out. Whilst most landlords will not object to decoration, they will usually request details of colour and paint quality before-hand. It is important to understand that whilst the property is yours for exclusive use, any changes to décor must have permission granted by the landlord or managing agent. Try to put forward neutral or soothing colours which are likely to appeal to future tenants and most likely to be agreed to by the landlord.
In not seeking permission, tenants run the risk of being asked to re-decorate the property at the end of the tenancy and return the decoration to the original state whether painted or wall-papered. This can prove costly and time consuming and if keys have already been handed back can mean that decoration would have to be organised by contractors at the tenant’s expense, usually deducted from the deposit.
Westpine can be contacted on 01204 694121 or firstname.lastname@example.org