01 May 2019

Posted by Discount Insurance on Wednesday, May 01, 2019
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Whether to allow tenants to decorate your property is a difficult decision for a landlord. 

Having long-term, reliable tenants is a real benefit for landlords and people are far more likely to stay put if they are able to make an otherwise anonymous magnolia-painted rented flat or house feel like home.

But letting your tenants free with a paintbrush could make the property unappealing to future tenants and leave you with a large re-decorating job at the end of a tenancy.

This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t let your tenants lose with a roller and a tin of Dulux. With a little communication and a clear understanding, allowing tenants to decorate can benefit both them and you.

Laying down some of these decorating conditions, which should be stipulated in the tenancy agreement, can help your tenants settle in and give you peace of mind.

  • Put in writing whether you would like your property returned to its original state when your current tenant leaves. 

  • Tenants should not re-decorate themselves without seeking permission from a landlord, or a letting agent, in advance

  • It is not usually in the landlord’s interests to allow short-term tenants to re-decorate a property. Make it a condition that a tenant has to have lived in the property for at least six months, and you are confident they will be staying for the foreseeable future, before giving them the go-ahead to decorate.

  • Make it a condition that tenants use a professional to do the painting or ask them to sign a declaration that they will pay for any additional work that needs doing to rectify a bad paint job.

  • Stipulate which colour schemes tenants should stick to and work with them on any decorating decision if possible (although if you have allowed them to decorate, you can’t be too dictatorial, this is after all about allowing them to personalise the property). 

  • Take a proper inventory before the tenant starts decorating and remind them that any paint damage to furnishings and fittings will be their responsibility and will need to be cleaned or paid for.

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