How to Manage Property Repairs

12 September 2021

The landlord is responsible for maintaining the property’s structure and exterior, repairs to internal fixtures and utilities such as gas and electricity.

The tenant should report property repairs to the landlord as soon as possible, especially for faults that could damage health like faulty electrical wiring.

Landlord's Responsibilities

The landlord is always responsible for repairs to:

  • the property’s structure and exterior
  • basins, sinks, baths and other sanitary fittings including pipes and drains
  • heating and hot water
  • gas appliances, pipes, flues and ventilation
  • electrical wiring
  • any damage they cause by attempting repairs

The landlord is usually responsible for repairing common areas, for example staircases in blocks of flats. Check the tenancy agreement if you’re unsure.

How Should Tenants Report Repairs

The tenant should report property repair to the landlord as soon as possible, especially for faults that could damage health like faulty electrical wiring.

The tenant should include as much information as possible in order to help diagnose and fix the problem.

If you have setup your tenancy through Mudhut, the tenant can report property issues by signing into their account and going to the tenancy from the Renting page.

When a tenant reports the repair, you will receive a report with detailed information on the issue.

You can also keep the tenant informed on the progress of the repair by adding notes to the issue.

If Repairs Aren’t Completed

If the landlord refuses to carry out repairs, tenants can:

  • start a claim in the small claims court for repairs under £5,000
  • in some circumstances, carry out the repairs themselves and deduct the cost from their rent

If the landlord doesn't make repairs to remove hazards, tenants can ask their local council to inspect the property under the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) and to take any action that is necessary.

If the council finds serious hazards, it must take enforcement action to make sure the hazard is removed.

If you’re in Scotland, contact the Private Rented Housing Panel (PRHP).

Tenant's Responsibilities

The tenant should only carry out repairs if the tenancy agreement says they can. The tenant can’t be forced to do repairs that are the landlord’s responsibility.

However, if the tenant damages another tenant’s flat, for example if water leaks into another flat from an overflowing bath, they’re responsible for paying for the repairs. They are also responsible for paying to put right any damage caused by their family and friends.

Categories: Residential Lettings Best Practice