Maybe someone should tell the weather but - fanfare please - it's National BBQ Week!


We thought we'd mark the occasion by looking at potential tenancy issues that can arise through the culinary art form that is the barbeque, and how to avoid these while enjoying a great outdoor feast.


If you're fortunate enough to have a garden with your rented property, then a summer barbeque (or even a winter one if you're well wrapped up) is an appealing thing to do - and rightly so. There's something about food grilled in the open air that is extra special.

Speaking of the garden though, that's where our first bit of advice is. We've spoken before about gardens and in particular expectations surrounding their upkeep - a landlord should be clear in the tenancy agreement about which areas of the garden and which duties the tenant will be responsible for. It's important to follow the points set out in the tenancy agreement but even if there is limited or no guidance on how often hedges should be trimmed or what feed to give the plants, at the very least the garden should be shown the same degree of TLC as the rest of the property.

An overgrown lawn may lead to some debate between tenant and landlord if there has been no specific instruction to mow it regularly, but a scorched patch on the lawn in the shape of a disposable barbeque is a completely different scenario. A landlord could claim for damage in that circumstance, regardless of what other gardening responsibilities are or are not detailed in the tenancy agreement. Equally so, if the garden is left strewn with empty beer bottles, paper plates and aforementioned disposable barbeque when you move out then that is far from leaving the property how you found it.

In some cases you might find that the property comes with its own barbeque on the inventory - either a built in number or a portable grill. If you have the opportunity to use this then ensure that, by the end of the tenancy, it is as you found it when you moved in. We see many claims arising from ovens that have not been cleaned - as with ovens, it's best to keep the barbeque grill looking spick and span. Make sure you know how the grill works to help avoid any damage, and on the note of damage make sure any other inventoried items - garden furniture for example - are looked after during your barbeque party.

It's not just the outdoors you need to give consideration to during a barbeque. On hot summer days the chances are your windows will be left open, as will the back door so that food and drink can be ferried to and from the kitchen. That means the smell of barbeque smoke can get into the house. Now of course the smell of barbeque is a thing of wonder at the time, but if it lingers in rooms and on curtains in the days that follow then it loses a bit of the magic. If it's noticeable inside the property that you have been using the barbeque outside, be sure to air rooms appropriately in the following days and use an air freshener where necessary.

Follow the tips above and the only worry you'll have at your barbeque will be... are there enough burgers?!