Permission for Shelving

Hi my tenants have asked to put up a couple of shelves. If I give written permission what should I include?


Hi Lorraine, great question.

If you trust the tenant to do this well, then there shouldn’t be too many issues. But if you’d like some security in case you need to claim money from their deposit should things go wrong, then it’s worth setting some restrictionson:

  • material
  • weight
  • length
  • colour
  • damage to the wall
  • must be level to the floor
  • installing the shelves to a professional standard

The worst thing that could happen is if they do a poor job and damage the property, but then claim that because they had permission, you can’t deduct any money for repairs. Specifying the above items would help you claim that money for repairs if you needed to.

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More hassle than it’s worth. I’m afraid I would suggest freestanding shelving if possible as the only option to any additional storage.
Once the requests start they never stop and some tenants have a tendency to even commence work without asking.
Bolting massive TVs to the wall is the favourite one that they seldom seek permission for. And never remove and make good the huge raw bolt holes at the end of the tenancy.


Should there be any provision if they hit any plumbing or wiring?


Hi Lorraine, you could include ‘to test for pipes and wiring within the wall’. But if you’re giving the tenants permission to add a shelf themselves, then it going wrong in this way is always a possibility! Any damaged caused could be claimed from the deposit, unless that the deposit scheme deemed your permission for them install the shelf freed them from any claims relating to that activity. I’m not sure how that would play out if it came to it. It sounds like you are concerned about this shelf, though, so maybe just refuse the permission or pay for a professional to do the work?


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make sure noone drills above the line of an electric socket or light switch.

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