Your rights to repair will differ depending on whether you rent from a landlord/agent who doesn't live with you or if you share the accommodation with the owner of the property.
If you rent from a landlord/agent who doesn't live with you, they have a legal responsibility to carry out certain repairs - even if these are not directly stated in the contract. Your contract may have other landlord responsibilities in it, but these responsibilities are a minimum obligation and never for you to pick up.
Their responsibilities include:
- Keeping the exterior of the property in a good condition e.g. guttering, roof, walls, windows and doors.
- Maintaining heating and hot water systems.
- Electrical wiring and gas appliances including pipes, flues and ventilation.
- Keep all the appliances and facilities provided with the property in good working order e.g cooker, fridge. shower, and any burglar and fire alarms.
- Gas and fire safety, including smoke detectors and fire alarm panels.
The landlord/agent should also put right any damages to decorations caused by disrepair, and keep the property free from serious health and safety hazards.
If you rent via an agency, both the landlord and their agent are equally responsible for ensuring that repairs are carried out. The agent cannot refuse to undertake essential repairs by saying that the landlord will not authorise the works.
If you live with an owner you have fewer rights to repair, unless your contract is specific about what repairs the owner has agreed to cover. The only statutory repairs are those relating to health and safety of tenants and the public e.g gas/electrical safety. You can talk to your landlord about getting work done but if you have problems contact LUU Advice.
See the related articles to learn about how to request a repair.