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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    178

    Default Can I increase rent if tenant demands deck railing?

    House with a deck. Deck is 990mm above ground (no railing required). Tenant has a baby and an infant. I decided to put up an aluminium railing intended to make the deck infant safe only. No good deed goes unpunished. Tenants now demand railing be adult safe aka fully compliant which is obviously going to be expensive. The way I see it I have 3 choices:
    1. Take down the railing and state that it doesn't require one
    2. Tell the tenant it's as is or nothing
    3. Build compliant railing and pass on the cost to the tenant. They just started a 12 month lease, so if they request work done, can I justify raising the rent?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Rotorua
    Posts
    476

    Default

    hmmm... interesting... personally I'd explain that decks below 1m do not legally require railing and offer to install one if tenant is happy to cover the cost over say 6-12 months.
    But really 990mm is a bit pushing it. Tenant might take a spade and make it 1010mm and issue you 14 days notice to fix.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Auckland
    Posts
    1,907

    Default

    Put the railing on. 1m is still quite high to fall.
    If it costs $5K then up the rent $10pw - a reasonable return - but you won't be able to do this till end of the 12 month fixed term.

    Is it a timber deck? Could be a small weekend DIY project?
    The three most harmful addictions are heroin, carbohydrates and a monthly salary - Fred Wilson.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    1,034

    Default

    Are you absolutely certain that not a single cm of the deck is more than 999mm above ground? Because sod's law says that's the point the kid will fall from. Personally I'd view the long term strategy of keeping happy tenants growing up in a family friendly home.

    Have the tenants just moved in knowing the hazard existed. Or are they long term tenants, recently having a baby, making the adult suitable deck a new problem? If the former I'd try to reach a cost sharing arrangement. If the latter I'd make the investment to secure a long term tenancy.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    2,794

    Default

    You can change fixed term tenancy terms by agreement between the parties. Documented well!

    Could offer to break the FT if the deck is a deal breaker for them.

    Or ask them to share the cost of a railing but separate agreement rather than increasing the rent.

    Demanding tenants need not have their tenancy renewed.

  6. #6

    Default

    the code clause only says that barrier is required for 1000 or higher and then must be adequate stength and rigidity

    it seems that providing a child proof barrier is reasonable?

    As for lowering the ground this would be contrary to building act and a stupid thing to do, Where did you measure to? paved surfavce or landscaped area?

    The alternatives above are reasonable but dont feel compelled to do anything.

    But removing it seems churlish?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    7,633

    Default

    Wouldn't you add value to the property with the right railing? I like the idea of getting a win/win so they pay over time and you get the value add.

    cheers,

    Donna
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Hastings
    Posts
    14,876

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by AlFa View Post
    Tenant might take a spade and make it 1010mm and issue you 14 days notice to fix.
    LL might take a spade and make it 970mm or might issue a 14 day notice to fix after unauthorised alterations.

    Crashy readily understood the need of the infant child and acted appropriately, over-and-above the legal requirement. Well done!

    The ungrateful tenant then seemed to see a sucker and seek to take advantage.
    Want a great looking concrete swimming pool in Hawke's Bay? Designer Pools will do the job for you!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Hastings
    Posts
    14,876

    Default

    Noting Crashy's other recent post, seems it's a bad week.

    Or is it maybe time to consider using a PM?
    Want a great looking concrete swimming pool in Hawke's Bay? Designer Pools will do the job for you!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Rotorua
    Posts
    476

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Perry View Post
    LL might take a spade and make it 970mm or might issue a 14 day notice to fix after unauthorised alterations.
    Haha... appreciate your humour. Would love to see "after unauthorised alterations" stand up in Tribunal. At the same time 1010mm will stand up just fine.


 

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