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Acura

Nit-picking!

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If a tenant breaks a key off in the front door lock, who should pay for the new lock and fitting of?

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My immediate/ first thoughts were that it's the tenants responsibility to pay......but, then I thought,  this sounds like a trick question. So, I thought a bit more and decided there is a better answer.

I think it's the landlords responsibility to arrange for a new lock to be fitted and to provide a new key for each of the tenants and any other key holders. The cost should be recovered from the tenants......who are unlikely to be happy when they see the size of the bill.

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Unless the lock was faulty, requiring extra force to try and open, and the key wasn't given in a fatigued state then it's their problem.

The issue is that a locksmith may sympathise with the tenant and report that the lock was faulty, but even than you might argue that they should have referred to you prior to being excessive.

I have refunded for a locksmith after the tenant had arranged it and chosen a silly route to get one (agency bumping up the total cost). I took a view that it was worth looking after a naive tenant.

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Thanks RL. 

I didn’t intend it to be a trick question! However, it’s interesting to see others’ opinions on trivial matters, which can end up being less than trivial. 

My first thought was he should pay, but like you, I thought again. I bought the barrel and changed it myself yesterday, so all in all less than £10. Wish he’d done it himself, but hey ho. He’s been a tenant for 10 years and not defaulted once, so I can’t grumble. 

Incidentally, he moved out last weekend after I informed him of my intentions to sell my properties. He didn’t want the stress of viewers and waiting for a sale before getting a section 21, so he moved back in with family. 

I’ve cancelled my subscription with the NLA. It’s time to retire after 32 years!! 

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Yes good points. I agree that if the repair cost is small or you can fix it yourself and the tenant is worth keeping sweet then it's worth not passing on the (tax deductable) cost.

The problem is that if your property is managed by lettings agents &/or a locksmith becomes involved it can easily be over £100 to repair.

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Exactly. And when we lived in the States it was a frustrating as hell to get invoices for ridiculous amounts for jobs that take 10 minutes. I’ve changed so many locks over the years, it maybe even took me less than that!

One thing I will not miss are management agents. I even got a letter last week from one department telling me my tenant had defaulted ... after another department had issued a Section 21, and she moves out next week!! Ugh. 

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I know the question has been answered but my two-penneth for what its worth is, I would think keys dont snap with normal use unless the lock is faulty and getting stiffer and stiffer which would be a landlord maintenance issue but maybe should have been reported before it got so bad.

However the tenant and the tenants history and behavior  could lead you to think they may be at fault.

 

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The agency I refer to is a Yellow Pages type advertiser. Those that purport to supply best tradesmen, when in practce they just ring roud to get someone who is available or who may or may not be on their books.

That agency then invoices the client as they see fit, and often that isn't relative to the actual tradesmans charge to them.

Like Acura I could change the Euro Loock in a couple of minutes, I carry spares for abandonment situations, as minimum it causes the absconder to contact me if they want back in. Then of course it must be a lock that became faulty.

As I would have to spend 3 1/2 hours on the road sometimes it's better to let a local get on with it anyway, 2 minute job or not.

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