Can the landlord store their stuff in a property during a tenancy?
In short yes, after all they do own the property but the details must be made clear and included in the tenancy agreement.
The rental contract between landlord and tenant is a negotiation. It can include any reasonable and legal clauses provided both parties agree. Be sure to check your agreement properly.
It is worth considering that if the landlord retains part of the house for storing their possessions they may be liable to pay some or all of the council tax. Please check with your local authority.
On the whole we actually advise against landlords trying to keep possessions in the property for a number of reasons.
1. Invariably it is in that locked garage / loft / room that a problem arises, whether it is vermin, burst pipes or just needing access to it for faulty wiring.
2. If the agent holds the key and the problem occurs out of working hours, there can be a delay in locating the key from the office. On the other hand, if the key is hidden at the property (the best solution), the agent must remember its location and make sure that the tenant doesn’t find out. If the tenant knows, then the agent loses control on the landlord’s behalf.
3. Control can be lost anyway. We have known (through discovery or Check Out tenant confession) tenants who ‘broke in’ for whatever reason, so never assume total security.
4. Even if none of these scenarios occur, no-body likes being excluded from a part of their rental home, especially the loft or garage.
As a landlord it is always better to use separate, secure storage for your own possessions rather than trying to keep them in the property during a tenancy.
This is one of the 50 most asked questions in our new book: Landlord Intelligence.