Property Maintenance - Fit for Habitation

As stipulated in the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 any property rented out must be fit for human habitation from commencement of the tenancy and it is the landlord’s responsibility to maintain the property throughout the tenancy.

If the landlord wishes to enter the property for inspection or to carry out remedial work then this must be at a reasonable time of day and you must give the tenant reasonable notice of at least 24 hours.

The responsibility lies with the landlord for keeping both exterior and interior aspects of the property in good repair whilst the tenant is responsible for their own possessions. Examples of landlord’s covered responsibilities range from gas and electrical appliances, to ventilation systems, to ensuring that furniture meets current fire legislation. In most cases these works should be carried out by certified persons and details passed to the tenant within 28 days.

As tenants nowadays are much more informed on their rights, landlords must be aware to fulfil their legal obligations otherwise a county court can prosecute landlord’s, impose fines and order repair work to be carried out.

In the current climate with increased media attention – landlords cannot flout the law or their responsibilities and bad landlords will not be tolerated.

And don’t forget – the more agreeable the property is to prospective tenants, the more likely you are to achieve higher rents!