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What your Landlord is Responsible for

Published on Monday, 29 July 2013

What your Landlord is Responsible forIf you’re renting a property, it’s all too common a problem to have a less than perfect landlord. Though the majority of landlords are more than willing to keep their properties up to scratch in terms of repairs and safety, you’re likely to encounter some issues with the landlord if you’re renting a property. The most important thing when dealing with evasive or unwilling landlords is to be fully aware of what their responsibilities are. There are many laws regarding tenancies and property rentals that are in place for your safety, so make sure you’re clued-up when it comes to what your landlord should provide for you.-    Repairs. Your landlord is in charge of making any repairs and renovations to your home before you move in. It’s not unheard of for a landlord to promise to renovate or repair, and then fail to do so before move-in day. To avoid this, try to get all verbal agreements written down either in the contract or in a formal letter.  Should this happen to you, it’s important you’re treated properly. If repairs have to take place whilst you’re living in the property, then they should by law not affect your state of living. For example, if the whole house needs re-plumbing, then it’s your landlord’s responsibility to make sure you still have a working shower and toilet. If your landlord is failing in his duties then write a written letter of complaint. Any issues or faults you find with the property or landlord should always be documented and dated as forms of evidence. These will be necessary should the situation get out of hand.   In some cases your landlord might attempt to evict you rather than pay to sort out the flaws you’ve pointed out to them. Legally, your landlord cannot evict you without written notice and a court order. You should be able to dispute any attempts made to evict you as long as you’ve not flouted any of the obligations in the contract.-    Deposit.Your landlord is required by law to put your deposit into a Tenancy Deposit Scheme. This is to protect both parties should your deposit refund be called into dispute. If, for any reason, you doubt that your landlord has done so, it’s important to request proof. A Tenancy Deposit Scheme is in place to protect you and your money, so if in doubt then do not be afraid to ask for evidence!-    Safety.One of the first things to do in your new home is to check that appropriate safety measures are in place. If your house is fitted with a burglar alarm it should be fully-functional so as to protect you and the property. A smoke detector, by law, should be fitted and operational – you can test this yourself. If your detector isn’t working, then the fire department can fit you a new one for absolutely no charge. Finally, though not a legal requirement, your home should have a carbon monoxide monitor. These are widely available from DIY stores and even some supermarkets. It’s worth speaking to your landlord before purchasing one off your own back – a good landlord will cover the cost of such an important necessity! Make sure all windows and doors can be locked, and there are no other ways to enter or break into your home.
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