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Landlord unhappy with our decoration

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270 views 2 replies latest reply: 28 October 2015

We informed our landlord we wanted to redecorate and she said fine although no details were discussed.   Majority of the walls in two rooms were magnolia apart from alcoves which were dark red and one feature wall with red flowery wallpaper.  The wallpaper also went up the stairs below the picture rail and we felt made the place a bit dark.

We have painted the flowery feature walls magnolia and changed the alcoves to a light beige so its really neutral. 

Landlord recently came over and was unhappy we ‘changed the style’. As its actually more neutral I was shocked at her reaction. Because its so plain its clearly not her taste.

When moving out will she have a right to expect us to re-paper the walls and put the red paint back?  She isn’t using an agency so I am concerned we could have a battle with the deposit.  Apart from the cost if we cant get the same wallpaper what then? She chooses one and we have to put it up? 

As we have done it tastefully and so neutral I thought it would be fine but what are our rights here?


Hi Alison

Do you have the landlord’s agreement to your redecoration in writing? If so then it is likely to be difficult for her to argue that you shouldn’t have done it. If there is an issue when you leave then just raise a dispute with the deposit protection scheme that holds your deposit and let them decide – the landlady would most likely need to be able to prove that what you’ve done has lowered the value of the property (i.e. caused her loss that she can justify taking £ from your deposit to correct). It doesn’t sound like that’s the case. Keep all your correspondence with her and take photos of the property. It will be up to her to prove a right to make deductions, it’s not up to you to prove a right to have your deposit returned.



Thanks Alex.  On looking at the paperwork the contract says we cannot paint or decorate without permission and approval.  We did ask her and she said we could if we kept it similar colours and style but this was a verbal conversation and not put in writing.  We painted over a wall with red flowery paper with magnolia which was already on some of the other walls so didn’t think this would be a problem but we did paint some alcoves which were dark red to a light beige so I suppose she could argue its too different and it is a different style because it was dark and busy before whereas now its light and plain.   

Will see what happens if and when we leave. I would have thought we’ve helped her out really as of course neutral is good when selling and letting surely but I feel there may be some emotional attachment to the house perhaps or maybe she just wants to be in control I don’t know.  We’ve been waiting for some repairs for over a year mind you so if there is a problem  I will contact the deposit protection scheme and mention the issues we have had on our side.  Thanks for the advice.



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