Expat Forum For People Moving Overseas And Living Abroad banner
Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
631 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Jill & I were having a discussion about the amount of leeway we would enjoy as tenants in a long term let.

For instance if we wanted to put up pictures or shelves on the wall, provided we did it properly, would we normally have to get the landlords permission and if so is it normally given.

If we wanted to redecorate at our own expense, is this allowed or would we have to put it back to the original before we left.

Obviously if we wanted to do major alterations like put up partitions, knock down walls or install heating etc. we would have to negotiate with the landlord.

May we have views and experiences from both tenants and landlords please.

What we are after is, if we want to make the long term let our home for the forseeable future would we be able to, within certain parameters, treat the property as our own. We would not be expecting the landlord to fund projects designed solely to make our tenancy more comfortable for us personally
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,399 Posts
Jill & I were having a discussion about the amount of leeway we would enjoy as tenants in a long term let.

For instance if we wanted to put up pictures or shelves on the wall, provided we did it properly, would we normally have to get the landlords permission and if so is it normally given.

If we wanted to redecorate at our own expense, is this allowed or would we have to put it back to the original before we left.

Obviously if we wanted to do major alterations like put up partitions, knock down walls or install heating etc. we would have to negotiate with the landlord.

May we have views and experiences from both tenants and landlords please.

What we are after is, if we want to make the long term let our home for the forseeable future would we be able to, within certain parameters, treat the property as our own. We would not be expecting the landlord to fund projects designed solely to make our tenancy more comfortable for us personally

This is a difficult topic...We've been landlords and tenants and I do try to see both sides but I think in the kind of scenario you suggest I as landlord wouldn't like to see major alterations in my property....simply because it's MY property.

We have been living in our rented house for almost four years now and have a very good relationship with our landlord. If something goes wrong in the house we get it repaired, he pays, no questions asked. But this was part of a deal involving a reduction of 800 euros a month in the rent we agreed to when we first signed the contract.

My concerns as a landlord would be that any installations, alterations, in fact any work that altered the appearance of the property, should be done by properly qualified technicians or painter/decorators etc. I would definitely rule out any DIY jobs. At the end of the day, the rented house is YOUR home and I must respect that but the house is MY property and that must be respected too.

There is also the issue that although you have security of tenure to a point it is only to a point. What if you spent £10k on various improvements and I decided a year afterwards that I wished to move into the house with my family? The law allows me to evict you in order to do that.

There are things we would do to the house we rent were it ours -installing a decent heating system, knocking down a wall, a few minor things....but we accepted the house as it is and no way will we spend money on 'improvements' - we are quite happy with our current arrangement which enables us to buy a new fridge/freezer say and deduct from rent payable without consulting our landlord. But when we sold our properties years back we accepted that we had lost a large measure of choice in the exact circumstances of our daily lives.

But then we have a good relationship with our Austrian landlord based on four contracts renewed and no doubt the fact that we pay our rent in two chunks of six and five months has built trust between us.

We are hoping that our family will make an offer to the landlord to purchase the property as it stands on two large plots, one of which has building permission. My dil would build a smaller house for family use.

But then I can see problems looming as she has said she would like to alter the house in ways we wouldn't like!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
631 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks mrypg9 for your views, I can see the logic in what you say.

However I think that to be living somewhere for tens of years would be fairly irksome if we were not given a certain lattitude to make cosmetic changes, decorations, painting, picture hanging without constantly applying for permission.

Although I am not a qualified decorator, I have been doing it for forty years, have high standards and do not go in for the outlandish.

I have only rented for a couple of periods in my adult life and both of those have been short term so I have no idea what a landlord would expect from a tenant. I would have thought that if the tenant afforded the same care as if the property were their own that would go a long way to meet expectations.

As a child I grew up in council houses and my parents changed the wallpaper/decorations fairly frequently and once installed new kitchen units where the originals were wholly inadequate.

As I say I am not an experienced tenant so I do welcome your views and experiences. They will partly add to our pros and cons list as to whether to eventually buy a property or rent forever.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15,894 Posts
I would think it depends on whether the property is purely there to provide investment income for the owner, handled via an agency, or if it's somewhere that the owners might want to live in themselves one day.

I used to do painting and decorating for my landlord in lieu of rent when I was a tenant in the UK and he was very grateful. But you have to build up a trusting relationship I guess.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,045 Posts
From a landlord's perspective, my comments in red below;


Jill & I were having a discussion about the amount of leeway we would enjoy as tenants in a long term let.

For instance if we wanted to put up pictures or shelves on the wall, provided we did it properly, would we normally have to get the landlords permission and if so is it normally given.I would allow this without notification although I would probably expect the holes to be put right at the end of the agreement - this might mean touching up the paint work as well.

If we wanted to redecorate at our own expense, is this allowed or would we have to put it back to the original before we left.Again, I would say yes, allowed, but with a reservation. We had a tenant 'redecorate' and his taste was certainly not ours. It cost masses to paint over his garish colours!

Obviously if we wanted to do major alterations like put up partitions, knock down walls or install heating etc. we would have to negotiate with the landlord.Agreed - ask and discuss with landlord as local town hall permission will be required (obra menor)

May we have views and experiences from both tenants and landlords please.

What we are after is, if we want to make the long term let our home for the forseeable future would we be able to, within certain parameters, treat the property as our own. We would not be expecting the landlord to fund projects designed solely to make our tenancy more comfortable for us personally
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,399 Posts
Thanks mrypg9 for your views, I can see the logic in what you say.

However I think that to be living somewhere for tens of years would be fairly irksome if we were not given a certain lattitude to make cosmetic changes, decorations, painting, picture hanging without constantly applying for permission.

.
Agreed....it never occurred to me to ask about things like picture hanging...I just went ahead and did it. It's essential to make the house into your home - that's why we've had our furniture carted all over Europe as we've moved.

The main thing I expected as a landlord was to receive my property at the end of the rental period in a condition such that I could rent it out again fairly quickly without incurring major or unreasonable expense.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
558 Posts
A landlord lets out his/her property worth thousands and thousands (maybe 100s of thousands) and a tenant wants to add built-ins, change the colour of wall paint, shove up a wooden fence, etc etc.

I would have no problem with pictures being hung or pots of plants added but major stuff . . . .

. . . . not in my place, buddy!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,399 Posts
A landlord lets out his/her property worth thousands and thousands (maybe 100s of thousands) and a tenant wants to add built-ins, change the colour of wall paint, shove up a wooden fence, etc etc.

I would have no problem with pictures being hung or pots of plants added but major stuff . . . .

. . . . not in my place, buddy!

I think that is how I viewed it when we rented out our properties....

People have an almost cartoon-like view of landlords as grasping Fagin figures. Far too simplified a picture.

Frankly, I marvel at the risk property owners are willing to take when they rent property in their own country, let alone abroad. Certainly in the UK tenants' rights are such that it is difficult to obtain an eviction order and during that time it is unlikely rent will be paid. The tenant can cause damage to the property costing £000s and what can the landlord do? It is even more difficult in Spain when you are not on the spot.

My son and dil own property here and used to let only for short periods to business colleagues. You would think that comparatively wealthy, educated professionals would respect other people's property....a mistake. Now they rent only to a responsible few.

That's not to deny there are bad landlords. Here the most common abuse seems to be not returning the deposit. Simple remedy: don't pay rent after your contract expires until you have covered the amount you are owed....assuming you have treated the property with respect.

That's what our current landlord advised us to do in respect of a large deposit given to our previous landlord. He obviously expects the same treatment when we leave...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,274 Posts
Agreed....it never occurred to me to ask about things like picture hanging...I just went ahead and did it. It's essential to make the house into your home - that's why we've had our furniture carted all over Europe as we've moved.

The main thing I expected as a landlord was to receive my property at the end of the rental period in a condition such that I could rent it out again fairly quickly without incurring major or unreasonable expense.
We've rented a fair few flats in the last few years for family at Uni.

In most, it has been a condition of the lease that no pictures are allowed on the walls. The logic is that "touching up" walls is seldom successful, and complete redecoration might be required - which would be irritating and unprofitable if a succession of tenants each only stayed for a relatively short time. How can a landlord know, in advance, if a new tenant is likely to stay for many years?

In busy rental areas like Glasgow, there is an unrealistic expectation that a flat will be left in absolutely pristine condition, ready for a new tenant to move in the day after the last one moves out. Landlords seem to believe that no routine maintenance should be required of them whatsoever. Even signs of normal wear and tear like a few scuff marks on walls are unacceptable, even if the tenant has stayed for a couple of years.

I've spent hours with Jif removing every tiny mark from walls, and blessed cheap but practical laminate flooring many times! At least, we've managed to get the deposit returned every time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,399 Posts
We've rented a fair few flats in the last few years for family at Uni.

In most, it has been a condition of the lease that no pictures are allowed on the walls. The logic is that "touching up" walls is seldom successful, and complete redecoration might be required - which would be irritating and unprofitable if a succession of tenants each only stayed for a relatively short time. How can a landlord know, in advance, if a new tenant is likely to stay for many years?

In busy rental areas like Glasgow, there is an unrealistic expectation that a flat will be left in absolutely pristine condition, ready for a new tenant to move in the day after the last one moves out. Landlords seem to believe that no routine maintenance should be required of them whatsoever. Even signs of normal wear and tear like a few scuff marks on walls are unacceptable, even if the tenant has stayed for a couple of years.

I've spent hours with Jif removing every tiny mark from walls, and blessed cheap but practical laminate flooring many times! At least, we've managed to get the deposit returned every time.
We have always returned property we've rented in pristine condition. We've put up pictures with such extreme care that the holes are barely noticeable.
OH always does an extremely thorough clean because she couldn't bear the thought of anyone thinking we were 'dirty' in any degree. I think it's a West of Scotland trait.

As landlords we expected to have to do a bit of touching up when tenants left. On the whole we were lucky - hardly any problems except for one extremely unreasonable American tenant. After dealing with him we decided 'Enough already' and sold our properties. Renting was frankly not for us. We felt too sorry for people who were obviously conning us - one tenant who couldn't pay the rent had purchased new hi-fi equipment - and I disliked getting into arguments over unpaid rent or damages to the property.

We used an agent for our Canadian property so had no problems there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,274 Posts
We have always returned property we've rented in pristine condition. We've put up pictures with such extreme care that the holes are barely noticeable.
OH always does an extremely thorough clean because she couldn't bear the thought of anyone thinking we were 'dirty' in any degree. I think it's a West of Scotland trait.

As landlords we expected to have to do a bit of touching up when tenants left. On the whole we were lucky - hardly any problems except for one extremely unreasonable American tenant. After dealing with him we decided 'Enough already' and sold our properties. Renting was frankly not for us. We felt too sorry for people who were obviously conning us - one tenant who couldn't pay the rent had purchased new hi-fi equipment - and I disliked getting into arguments over unpaid rent or damages to the property.

We used an agent for our Canadian property so had no problems there.
No. it's an east of Scotland thing, too! You do a massive clean when you leave, and another one as you move in to thenew house - even though the previous person has already done it, and the place is spotless!

Of course, anywhere should be left "pristine," as in spotlessly clean. My point is though, that many landlords, will not accept even the tiniest pinholes from pictures, it's absolutely forbidden and this is even stated in the rental agreement. Nor do they accept even the slightest scuff mark on paint work, etc which is clearly just normal wear and tear, normal in any home - or we would never have to redecorate. They go beyond good reason just to have an excuse not to return deposits.

We've been lucky and had deposits returned - but have obeyed the "no pics" rule.

Property rental will always be a bit of a gamble - a good tenant is worth their weight in gold, as is a good landlord. Unfortunately, neither party can guarantee this in advance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
631 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
A landlord lets out his/her property worth thousands and thousands (maybe 100s of thousands) and a tenant wants to add built-ins, change the colour of wall paint, shove up a wooden fence, etc etc.

I would have no problem with pictures being hung or pots of plants added but major stuff . . . .

. . . . not in my place, buddy!
Is this a personal view or are you a landlord?

You are always promoting the view to long term rental as opposed to buying at the moment. If what you say is indicative of of the majority of landlords in Spain then we would be stuck with whatever decor etc. that was there when we rented with no chance of improvement.

This means that if a property was suitable in most other respects we would still have to look elsewhere merely because we could not do a bit of redecoration.

I find this attitude a bit odd especially as I would be footing the bill for the decorating. As I said earlier I do not go in for the outlandish just nice safe neutrals and soft pastels. I really could not live with bright blue or purple walls, some of which I have seen on property adverts.

This will definitely go on the con side of whether to rent long term or buy. The place would never seem like home.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
36,694 Posts
Is this a personal view or are you a landlord?

You are always promoting the view to long term rental as opposed to buying at the moment. If what you say is indicative of of the majority of landlords in Spain then we would be stuck with whatever decor etc. that was there when we rented with no chance of improvement.

This means that if a property was suitable in most other respects we would still have to look elsewhere merely because we could not do a bit of redecoration.

I find this attitude a bit odd especially as I would be footing the bill for the decorating. As I said earlier I do not go in for the outlandish just nice safe neutrals and soft pastels. I really could not live with bright blue or purple walls, some of which I have seen on property adverts.

This will definitely go on the con side of whether to rent long term or buy. The place would never seem like home.
as a tenant of various places over the last 8 years.....

evey place I have rented has had white or cream/magnolia walls & the owners have been very against the idea of us painting - even in pastels

we have been permitted to put up our own pictures - as long as we used the picture hooks already in place

at our last place, because it was supoosed to be a 'forever' let, we allowed our girls to put posters on the bedroom walls with blutac - this apparently caused several 100€ worth of damage :eek: - we moved out because we were told that the owners were moving back to Spain - they are there at the moment but I know for a fact it isn't a permanent move

our current landlord is different - we have rented furnished but have gradually replaced his furniture with our own - he is happy for us to decorate if we wish as long as we either redecorate in magnolia before we go or allow him some of our deposit for this when we leave

we have put up pictures etc etc - again, he is happy for us to do this - he wants it to be our home & he wants a happy tenant who will stay for years, which we hope to do

I think the main difference is that here we have a proper contract - previously they were 'short' contracts which were renewed as & when

although if it's your 'home' it makes no difference to your rights as a tenant - it shows a different mindset in the landlord
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,432 Posts
We moved into our current home in September last year. When we moved over to Spain we brought a lot of our own furniture and belongings. Most properties are let furnished so the owner must be approached first with regard to moving their stuff out. Our current landlord is totally different from the previous one who was nothing more than a crook. This landlord moved most of his furniture out on day one of our tennancy. He allowed us to replace the electric boiler with a gas one. He has allowed us to hang picures wherever we want without asking. We had a large satellite dish installed plus a broadband antenna all without having to ask. We can decorate if we wish. I guess all this means that whatever you are allowed to do is down to your particular landlord. So far ours has been a bit of a gem. In some strong winds recently, several fences (and these are quite big and sturdy) were destroyed. He had them repaired with three days. He came to look at the work and decided that some of the finishing was not safe for our toddler so he called the builder back in and the work was completed there and then. Tbh we hadn't noticed the 'dangerous' bits but he did and for him it wasn't good enough. Each time he and his wife visit (which since September has been 3 times and never without giving us several days notice) they arrive with beaming smiles and hugs for my wife and boy and several hearty slaps across the back for me. We think we might stay here a while!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
558 Posts
Is this a personal view or are you a landlord?

Yes Steve, I am a landlord.

"You are always promoting the view to long term rental as opposed to buying at the moment. If what you say is indicative of of the majority of landlords in Spain then we would be stuck with whatever decor etc. that was there when we rented with no chance of improvement."

I dont speak for other landlords, I speak only for myself. Yes, in the current financial state of the Spanish economy, definitely, I'm promoting renting over buying.

"This means that if a property was suitable in most other respects we would still have to look elsewhere merely because we could not do a bit of redecoration."

I have no problem with a "bit" of redecoration. It depends what the "bit" means. I've seen some tenants build dreadful wooden built-ins, damaging expensive furniture, repainting in dreadful colours , even building three tier bunk beds to cram in as many as possible.

"I find this attitude a bit odd especially as I would be footing the bill for the decorating. As I said earlier I do not go in for the outlandish just nice safe neutrals and soft pastels. I really could not live with bright blue or purple walls, some of which I have seen on property adverts."

I would have no problem with this provided it was discussed beforehand.

"This will definitely go on the con side of whether to rent long term or buy. The place would never seem like home."

If Spain was to seem like home, nobody would go there. Thats the whole point of moving to experience different culture.

I have tried to answer each question as honestly as I could. Please note, I do not mean any offence to anybody.

Regards
Lep
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,399 Posts
Is this a personal view or are you a landlord?

Yes Steve, I am a landlord.

"You are always promoting the view to long term rental as opposed to buying at the moment. If what you say is indicative of of the majority of landlords in Spain then we would be stuck with whatever decor etc. that was there when we rented with no chance of improvement."

I dont speak for other landlords, I speak only for myself. Yes, in the current financial state of the Spanish economy, definitely, I'm promoting renting over buying.

"This means that if a property was suitable in most other respects we would still have to look elsewhere merely because we could not do a bit of redecoration."

I have no problem with a "bit" of redecoration. It depends what the "bit" means. I've seen some tenants build dreadful wooden built-ins, damaging expensive furniture, repainting in dreadful colours , even building three tier bunk beds to cram in as many as possible.

"I find this attitude a bit odd especially as I would be footing the bill for the decorating. As I said earlier I do not go in for the outlandish just nice safe neutrals and soft pastels. I really could not live with bright blue or purple walls, some of which I have seen on property adverts."

I would have no problem with this provided it was discussed beforehand.

"This will definitely go on the con side of whether to rent long term or buy. The place would never seem like home."

If Spain was to seem like home, nobody would go there. Thats the whole point of moving to experience different culture.

I have tried to answer each question as honestly as I could. Please note, I do not mean any offence to anybody.

Regards
Lep

And although it may seem indecent to point out this salient fact...the property does actually belong to the landlord and contrary to the views of a few extreme socialists, property is not theft if legally acquired.

If you want to treat a house as your property and do with it as you wish...go buy one!!
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,832 Posts
Thanks mrypg9 for your views, I can see the logic in what you say.

However I think that to be living somewhere for tens of years would be fairly irksome if we were not given a certain lattitude to make cosmetic changes, decorations, painting, picture hanging without constantly applying for permission.

Although I am not a qualified decorator, I have been doing it for forty years, have high standards and do not go in for the outlandish.

I have only rented for a couple of periods in my adult life and both of those have been short term so I have no idea what a landlord would expect from a tenant. I would have thought that if the tenant afforded the same care as if the property were their own that would go a long way to meet expectations.

As a child I grew up in council houses and my parents changed the wallpaper/decorations fairly frequently and once installed new kitchen units where the originals were wholly inadequate.

As I say I am not an experienced tenant so I do welcome your views and experiences. They will partly add to our pros and cons list as to whether to eventually buy a property or rent forever.
Steve I guess it would depend to some extent on the owners being reasonable people when faced with reasonable people wishing to rent long term, and that would mean in excess of a couple of years I guess.
In our case given this situation & assuming that the tenants would treat out place with care we would have no objections as long as they informed us first.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top