- Occupiers’ responsibilities
- Ending your tenancy
- Where to get help
Property Services is a part of the Inclusive Growth Directorate of Birmingham City Council. We provide a property and valuation service to all City Council departments. Part of our responsibility is to manage, lease/rent and dispose of City-owned commercial land and property including shops, offices, industrial units, warehouses, business parks and development sites.
This charter gives you a guide to your rights and responsibilities as a tenant of Birmingham City Council. It is intended to be used as a point of reference, not a complete statement of law. If any points are unclear, please contact your Property Manager.
2. Occupiers' responsibilities
2.1 Things to do straight away
Contact your chosen utility supplier to arrange supply and ensure that all meters are read on the first day of your tenancy, even if you are not moving in until later.
Speak to your insurance provider about the range of risks to insure against. Make sure you have the right cover for your needs.
Find out the position of:
- The water stopcock
- The mains electricity switch
- The fuse box
- The gas isolator valve
2.2 Your responsibilities as a tenant
- Pay rent as set out in your agreement; immediately it becomes due (further details on how to pay your rent are set out in point 2.4).
- Pay charges for all water, gas, electricity, telephone and similar services consumed on the premises, and business rates.
- Put and keep the premises in good and substantial repair. This means you take the premises in its existing state at the start of the agreement and you are required to repair the property, putting it into good condition and keeping it in good condition at all times. Please refer to your lease or tenancy agreement for confirmation of the things you are responsible for in your property.
- Inform the Council if repairs are needed for which the Council are responsible. Contacting the Council as soon as the problem arises will enable repairs to be dealt with quickly.
- Before making any alteration to the property, write to your Property Manager with details of your proposal.
- Use the premises only for the permitted use and only during the hours of use specified in your lease or tenancy agreement.
- Allow the Council and/or its authorised agents, to enter the premises to carry out repairs at all reasonable times after giving you reasonable prior notice except in an emergency.
- Give the Council the required and correct notice if you wish to leave (as set out in point 3.1).
You must not:
- Do anything which would be a nuisance or annoyance to others. This can include harassment relating to race, disability, sexuality, gender, religion, age, or physical or mental health.
- Use the premises for any illegal or immoral purpose.
- Apply for, or implement, any planning permission in respect of the premises without the prior written consent of the Property Manager.
- Assign the premises as assignment is not permitted in short term tenancies.
- Assign longer leases without first obtaining the Council’s consent.
- Sublet the premises under any circumstances.
Tenants of multi-occupied office, retail or industrial premises may have to pay a variable service charge by way of additional rent for the maintenance and servicing of the common parts within the building. Further details are available from your Property Manager. This is only a broad outline of your responsibilities. You will have other responsibilities, and details will be shown in your lease or tenancy agreement.
2.3 The Council’s responsibilities
The Council will:
- Respect your right to quiet enjoyment of the property and give you exclusive possession of the premises during the term of your occupation.
- Give you reasonable notice if the Council needs access to the premises to carry out repairs (except in the case of an emergency when notice may not be possible).
- Usually be responsible for the repair of the main structure of the property and the roof. This may vary depending on the specific terms in your lease or tenancy agreement. Please refer to your lease or tenancy agreement for confirmation, or contact your Property Manager for advice if you are unsure. If you occupy a multi-tenanted property, the Council will keep the common parts in good repair.
2.4 Paying the rent
Rent is usually payable on the traditional quarter days which are 25 March, 24 June, 29 September and 25 December each year.
It is your responsibility to ensure the Council receives your payment, and failure to pay by the due date may result in recovery action being taken without further warning.
Please note you should allow four working days for any payment made at the bank or post office to reach the Council’s account. If you do not receive an invoice one week before your payment is due, please telephone the Property Income Unit on 0121 303 3951. The available methods of payment and contact telephone numbers will be shown on each invoice and it is recommended you enquire about payment by way of direct debit.
If at any time you are unable to pay the full sum by the due date, you should contact the Property Income collection team on 0121 303 3951 or email to BPSPPIU@birmingham.gov.uk for advice.
2.5 Getting repairs done
To find out who is responsible for a specific repair please refer to your lease or tenancy agreement. In most instances the Council is responsible for repairs to the structure of the building, with internal repairs being your responsibility. If you are unsure who is responsible, contact your Property Manager for advice.
If you are a tenant of a neighbourhood shop and have a Council residential flat above your property, then you should refer any problems, such as water leaks coming from the flat, to your local Neighbourhood Office. For enquires relating to these matters please contact the Council Contact Centre on 0121 216 3030.
Contact your Property Manager promptly when any repair for which the Council is responsible needs carrying out. If repairs are not carried out promptly, please let the Council know. Do not stop paying the rent as this could give the Council grounds for taking proceedings against you.
2.6 Safety in your property
- Keep all your fire escape routes clear – do not block them with furniture, bikes, rubbish, bags or stock.
- Do not overload your electric sockets and wiring.
- If you go away for a long period, or during the winter, turn the water off and drain the tank to avoid frozen pipes.
- Keep the premises secure.
- Report any incidents of harassment or anti-social behaviour to your local Neighbourhood Office via the Council Contact Centre on 0121 216 3030.
3. Ending your tenancy
3.1 If you want to leave you will need to give the Council written notice of your intention to leave as set out in your lease or tenancy agreement.
Notice of termination must be given in writing and served on the Council, specifying the address of the property and providing the necessary period of notice as stated in your agreement to bring your occupation to an end on a specific date.
The rent will need to be paid up to and including the last day of the term. Any overpayment of rent made beyond the termination date will be refunded. You will also need to pay any service charge for which you are responsible.
If you have a lease, please refer to your own Legal Advisor for advice as to whether you are allowed to leave before the end of the contractual term.
Assignment of short-term tenancies is not permitted, however if you wish to assign your lease, please contact your Property Manager to seek consent before agreeing to transfer your lease agreement to a new tenant.
Unless the Council is notified and has provided prior consent, you will continue to be responsible for rent, service charge and rates under the terms of your agreement.
3.2 Repair, decoration and condition
Before you leave the Council will arrange to inspect the premises to ensure you have met all your responsibilities.
You must give the Council full vacant possession and leave the premises in good and substantial repair in accordance with the repairing clause. All tenants’ goods and fixtures and fittings must be removed from the premises and any damage caused to the premises by their removal must be made good. The property must be left clean and tidy and suitable for immediate reoccupation.
You must provide a completion certificate from a qualified electrician who confirms that the wiring complies with legislation and is safe to use.
3.3 When you leave
On the date you leave you will need to:
- Read all supply meters and notify the suppliers of your departure.
- Secure the property and return all keys to the Property Manager. Please note that returning the keys before the agreed vacation date will not terminate your liability unless previously agreed in writing by the Council.
4. Where to get help
Property Services enquires:
General enquiries: email@example.com
New premises to let: 0121 303 3935
Income collection: 0121 675 3698
Henry Pease: 07511 406585
Irene Steksova: 07395 884376
Thomas Glenn: 07597 012914
Rutendo Marira: 07928 506356
Parvez Choudhury: 07912 793983
Naveed Razak: 07892 786728
Reg Parsons: 07766 923167
George Johnson: 07511 406587