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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
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    1,046

    Default Demanding Tenants

    We have had a change of tenants while we were overseas---came recommended, but have started out being rather demanding.

    There were some things that needed tending to so we have given the the benefit of the doubt. Latest issue however is regarding a lock on a sleep out door which worked but was in need of restoration.

    My friend went and installed another whole handle with lock that appeared fine. Got a call saying it took 10 min to open and he better come immediately and fix--he informed he could come later that day and was told not to bother ,that he would get his own locksmith and charge us.

    This is a sleep out in the back of the residence we have just rented,he has decided to use as an office---I cant see any security issues in the time it would take for my guy to come.

    Just wondering the best way to deal with this issue (we return in 2 weeks),and Im assuming he is going to present us with the bill. I want to stop the ball rolling in terms of unreasonable demands right from the start

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    2,774

    Default

    "No" is a complete sentence.

    In practical terms, probably less hassle to pay the locksmith bill. There is quite a bit in the RTA about locks and security and best to be on the side of the angels IMO even if not strictly fair.

    I would document the issue though and email this to them along with your expectations.

    Reason being that you might end up in the Tenancy Tribunal at some point with difficult tenants so might as well keep good records from the outset.

    Landlords do have a few powers still. Inspections. Rent rises. Termination with no reason. Just saying.

    Just to note though, we have found it not that unusual to get calls to fix things in the early days of a tenancy. Usually minor but a fresh set of eyes can be quite useful. Mostly once tenants have settled in they are fine.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Kapiti
    Posts
    622

    Default

    In my view there are three reasons why tenants can appear 'demanding'

    1/ Maybe they've suffered a break in or some other trauma, making them more sensitive to potential problems. Real or imagined. Understandable within reason.

    2/ They are good tenants who like to make sure the property is well maintained, and as a courtesy let you know as such. No problem there in my view.

    3/ They are getting on the front foot with the landlord/manager to cover for their own shortcomings as tenants.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Hastings
    Posts
    14,834

    Default Con Job?

    Quote Originally Posted by skid View Post
    My friend went and installed another whole handle with lock that appeared fine. Got a call saying it took 10 min to open and he better come immediately and fix--he informed he could come later that day and was told not to bother ,that he would get his own locksmith and charge us.
    My view is that you're being conned. There's also the prospect that such things will get worse, rather than better. Ddo you want to contemplate that future?

    Under the RTA, I doubt the tenant has the right that's being claimed:

    Quote Originally Posted by RTA
    46 Locks
    (1) The landlord shall provide and maintain such locks and other similar devices as are necessary to ensure that the premises are reasonably secure.
    (2) Neither the landlord nor the tenant shall alter any existing lock or similar device, or add to or remove from the premises any lock or similar device, without the consent of the other given at the time that, or a reasonable time before, the alteration, removal, or addition is carried out.
    (3) Failure to comply with subsection (1), and contravention of subsection (2), without reasonable excuse, is each hereby declared to be an unlawful act.


    45 Landlord’s responsibilities
    (1) The landlord shall—
    (d) compensate the tenant for any reasonable expenses incurred by the tenant in repairing the premises where—
    (i) the state of disrepair has arisen otherwise than as a result of a breach of the tenancy agreement by the tenant and is likely to cause injury to persons or property or is otherwise serious and urgent; and
    (ii) the tenant has given the landlord notice of the state of disrepair or made a reasonable attempt to do so; and

    40 Tenant’s responsibilities
    (1) The tenant shall—
    (d) notify the landlord, as soon as possible after discovery, of any damage to the premises, or of the need for any repairs; and
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Perry View Post
    My view is that you're being conned. There's also the prospect that such things will get worse, rather than better. Ddo you want to contemplate that future?

    Under the RTA, I doubt the tenant has the right that's being claimed:
    So what is your suggestion-?-Show them that part of the TA--9I would imagine what they are reffering to is either the LL or tenant changing a lock without consulting and there fore one other party is basically locked out---Thats not the case here---there was notification that the lock was faulty(to the point it was hard to get locked /unlocked) although I dont believe it was a security issue as it did lock after a bit of playing around.
    I believe its more a case of the tenant becoming impatient and taking the matter into his own hands---We will need to address this issue,as he cannot simply make executive decisions with no notification.

    I suspect the prior suggestion of compensating (within reason)for the sticky issue of locks but with a very clear message that this sort of process breaks the rules of the TA and should not be done in the future .

    This is a new tenancy so I think it may be wise to give a little on the technical side to try to establish a good working relationship between tenant and Landlord.

    My guess is that he is either reacting to feeling hard done as there are some smaller issues that i will address when we return ,or he is trying to establish the dominant role between LL/tenant.

    I guess the end goal is to try to change a confrontational relationship without becoming a doormat---not always an easy task

    We still have a few thing that would be much easier if they were on board--(change TA to our name and hopefully change the expiry of fixed term to a better time of year,so we dont get caught again when we are away.)

    My hope is that whatever the locksmith has done is not unreasonable($$) and that this is just teething problems

    Its always a difficult situation deciding when to change over to the ''enforce'' attitude which inevitably causes confrontation---Sometimes its necessary but things always get done better when working on problems together.

    So when dealing with this issue we will most likely give them a copy of the appropriate TA rules dealing with notification(as diplomatically as possible)

    Does that seem reasonable?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Hastings
    Posts
    14,834

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by skid View Post
    So what is your suggestion-?-Show them that part of the TA--9I would imagine what they are referring to is either the LL or tenant changing a lock without consulting and there fore one other party is basically locked out---Thats not the case here---there was notification that the lock was faulty(to the point it was hard to get locked /unlocked) although I dont believe it was a security issue as it did lock after a bit of playing around.

    My hope is that whatever the locksmith has done is not unreasonable($$) and that this is just teething problems
    You seem to have mis-read the relevant clause. the wording does not use the word "consult." It refers to:
    without the consent of the other
    You have to decide from the choices you've mentioned and the potential draw-backs of each option. The RTA provides that you can yield on your rights. [Section 11 (2)]
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Cyberspace
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    5,756

    Default

    The tenant turned down your repair offer and ordered their own. They can pay.

  8. #8
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    Nov 2008
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Perry View Post
    My view is that you're being conned. There's also the prospect that such things will get worse, rather than better. Ddo you want to contemplate that future?

    Under the RTA, I doubt the tenant has the right that's being claimed:
    Noted ..thanks Im under no illusions that it was a heavy handed act and that in terms of the TA he was in the wrong--------I can pursue this along those lines,and will, if he proves to be a stubborn chap,and doesnt listen to reason,in terms of where we go from here--Ill meet him in approx 2 weeks.

    Thanks for the reaffirmation of what I thought to be the case.
    Last edited by skid; 04-09-2017 at 02:05 AM.

  9. #9

    Default

    Skid, it sounds like you already have a good grasp of dealing with people. My question would be whether it really needed replacement? If it could have done with an update, is there really a big enough issue to cause a scrap over?

    I can tell you from my experience with these types of issues, that getting the tenant on your side early makes it a hell of a lot easier later on. They may want to throw their weight around initially but why waste the energy on fighting back and causing a bigger argument? In the end, they're the ones paying you to live there and as long as they're not being completely unreasonable, it makes life a lot easier to let them pretend they hold the power. If you need to get heavy handed later on, it doesn't take much to show them who is really in charge. I'm not advocating rolling over and taking it, just not pushing it back on them and creating drama that you really just don't need.

  10. #10

    Default

    I repaired a ranchslider lock for a lounge door due in part to being roughly handled by the tenant . Around 3 weeks later tenant rings me to say lock is now broken . I told him that he needed to take some responsibility for this as the door was not unduly stiff and the repair job should have being more than adequate. He seemed to agree with me and havent heard back . I will find out later when i next go around if he has repaired it or not. My guess he has just locked it with the patio bolt rather than repairing the lock.


 

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