Your Obligations as a Tenant
This section looks in detail at your main obligations as a tenant. Please refer to your copy of the tenancy agreement for more information.
Paying your rent
You must pay your weekly rent in advance together with any other charges for your home. If you would prefer to pay on a fortnightly or monthly basis you must agree this first with the staff at your local TMO office. If you have a Walsall tenancy, there are two rent free weeks each year. We will inform our Walsall residents when these rent free weeks take place.
Ending your tenancy
If you want to end your tenancy, you must give us at least four weeks’ notice in writing. You must also make sure that all keys to the property are handed in to your local TMO office no later than 12 noon on the Monday that your tenancy ends and that no-one is left living in your home (this is called giving ‘vacant possession’). You will be charged rent for your home until the end of the four weeks’ notice period.
If your home is not left in good condition you will be recharged for items damaged beyond normal wear and tear.
Looking after your home
Although WATMOS is responsible for most of the repairs in your home, you have a general duty to look after the property, not to cause damage and to report promptly any repairs that need doing. In addition you are responsible for a number of repair and maintenance jobs such as:
- Internal decorations;
- Broken glass in windows;
- Your own appliances and fixtures and fittings;
- Lost keys and lock changes;
- Your TV aerials and satellite dishes (you need permission to install a TV aerial or satellite dish);
- Other minor repairs such as replacing light bulbs and fitting plugs and chains to baths and basins.
If you, your family or visitors to your home cause damage to WATMOS property you will have broken the terms of your tenancy agreement. In these circumstances WATMOS will charge you for the cost of putting the damage right and may take legal action to evict you.
If you have your own private garden then you are responsible for keeping it well maintained. WATMOS takes responsibility for looking after communal gardens and open spaces on our estates. However, we do encourage all tenants to help us in keeping communal areas clean and tidy. For example, some TMO tenants have set up gardening clubs to help improve the appearance of their estate.
You can only park your car on your front garden if you have a properly-constructed hardstanding in place. If you want to provide a hardstanding for your car you must get our written permission. Before we can give permission, you must arrange at your own expense for your local Council to install a dropped kerb. These matters are dealt with by the Highways Section at the Council.
Garages & Parking Spaces
A number of the TMO areas (Burrowes Street, Delves East, Ethelred, Metra, Thorlands and Twin Crescents) have garages or car parking spaces available for rent. If you are interested in renting a garage or car parking space, please contact the staff at your local TMO office.
Running a business from home
Most of our homes are not suitable as business premises and if you want to run a business from home you will need to get our permission. In considering an application we will need to consider whether the proposed activity can be reasonably undertaken in a residential area and whether it is likely to cause nuisance to your neighbours.
In most of our homes you are allowed to keep normal domestic pets such as dogs and cats, as long as they are well looked after and kept under control. We have a ‘no dogs policy’ in some of our flats so make sure you check about these local rules at the TMO office. We do not allow you to keep non-domestic pets such as chickens, pigs, horses and goats. If you are unsure about what you can and can’t do, take advice from the staff at your local TMO office.
Anti social behaviour
Anti social behaviour is behaviour that causes or is likely to cause, alarm, distress or nuisance to others. Everyone should be able to enjoy peace, quiet and security in their home. As a tenant you must show consideration towards your neighbours and not act in a way that makes life unpleasant for others. You also have an obligation to take reasonable steps to ensure that anyone living with you or visiting you does not act in an antisocial way. You must ensure you and any other person living in, or visiting your home, including your children do not act in any way which causes or is likely to cause a nuisance or is anti-social in our opinion. WATMOS give a very high priority to maintaining a good quality of life on our estates and will take action against tenants who cause nuisance or behave in an antisocial way. This can lead to eviction.
Harassment can take many forms and includes deliberately and repeatedly troubling or intimidating others. Your tenancy agreement states that you must not harass anyone and must take reasonable steps to ensure that anyone living with you or visiting you is not involved in harassment.
We will take action if you, anyone who lives with you or visits you is guilty of harassment. This could lead to eviction. All forms of harassment are unacceptable but WATMOS regards harassment motivated by racism as particularly serious and will take effective action against anyone found to be guilty of racial harassment.
If you are suffering from harassment (whether racial or not) you should contact your local TMO office. The TMO staff will discuss the problem with you and will draw up a plan of action to try and resolve the problem.
Refuse and rubbish removal
You should not allow rubbish to accumulate in your garden or on any communal areas around your home.
Please make sure that you keep all rubbish properly bagged and leave it out for collection on the appropriate day. If you live in a multi-story flat, please ensure that you properly bag your rubbish and put it down the chutes provided on each landing. This should only be done between 8.00 am and 8.00pm. Your Council operates a collection service for bulky items that are too large for routine collection.
Your Council may make a small charge for such collections. If you would like to use this service, please contact your TMO in the first instance.
If you have a problem with rats, mice, insects or other pests, you should contact your local Council’s disinfestations unit. In some instances there may be a charge but your local Council should tell you this before carrying out any work.
If you, someone who lives with you or a visitor to your home engages in illegal activity within a local TMO area we may take legal action against you. WATMOS and your local TMO will work closely with the Council and the Police to ensure that all tenants are able to enjoy a secure home in a peaceful and pleasant environment.
Violence towards staff
You must make sure that neither you, nor anyone who lives with you or visits your home, physically or verbally assaults or threatens any WATMOS or TMO employees, committee members or contractors.
If you are violent towards WATMOS or TMO employees, committee members or contractors, we will take legal action against you.