Here is a question to the blog clinic from Joanne.
I have been housed in temporary accommodation by the council. I pay most of my rent myself and get a very minimal amount of housing benefit. I have been housed into a one bedroom flat in a property managed by a property management company.
I moved in on 12th December. On 24th December I came home from work to find a card and a small box of chocolates in my living room. The card was from the landlord letting me know opening hours over Christmas. Therefore they let themselves in to do so.
Yet again, on 10th January, I came home to find they had let themselves in again to leave my temporary accommodation signing sheet in my kitchen.
I have been told that the landlord cannot do this and needs to give me prior notice of at least 24 hours. However, on the rules posted in my flat it says that the landlord has the right to inspect the property at any time and will do so between the hours of 9-6 week days.
I’m confused as to what my rights are.
Take a look at your agreement. You may be renting under a residential license. In which case, if your agreement permits the landlord or their agents to enter for various purposes – that is allowed.
For example, this is the situation when you live in a hotel – and many people do live in hotels. The hotel staff enter at various times to do cleaning and maintenance work.
If your agreement purports to be a tenancy, then no, the landlord should not enter in this way and you can object to it.
However, I suppose the question is – if the landlord is not acting in an unduly intrusive manner and you are happy living there, and also if you have had problems finding accommodation in the past – do you want to make a fuss?
I suspect though that if this continues and you do not object, your occupation (whatever it says in the agreement) will probably be a residential license as it will not have the main characteristic of a tenancy which is exclusive occupation.
There is nothing wrong with having a residential license though if your landlord is decent, the property is well maintained and you like it. A good residential license is better than a bad tenancy.