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Landlords obligations tenants solicitors sheffield

Landlord and Tenant obligations in rental housing.

This article appeared in the Mercury newspaper on 15th July 2010.

Solicitor Brian Wrigley of Norrie Waite & Slater Solicitors outlines the obligations which Landlords and Tenants have towards one another.

My landlord won"t carry out repairs to the property, what can I do?
landlord obligations to tenants
Your landlord has an obligation to ensure the property is maintained in an adequate state of repair.

If essential repairs are not carried out on the property it may be possible to take legal action to force your landlord to comply with their legal obligations. This may be in the form of a court order requiring your landlord to carry out the repairs. If the repairs have been delayed for no good reason then we may also be able to help you to claim compensation.

Contact us to speak to a specialist housing law solicitor who will advise you on what action can be taken.

What are my landlord's obligations towards repairs?

Laws exist which oblige landlords to maintain properties in an adequate state of repair. The Landlord and Tenant Act of 1985 sets out the statutory duties of landlords, including:

  • Keeping the structure of the building in good repair, including:
    • guttering
    • drains and external pipes
    • the roof
    • exterior walls
    • windows and doors
  • Keeping systems used for heating and hot water in good repair.
  • Keeping systems used for the supply of essential services in working order. This means:
    • electricity
    • gas
    • sanitation (including sinks, baths, toilets)
    • water

What are the obligations of a tenant?

Tenants also have obligations to their landlord and the property they reside in. These include:

  • paying the rent as agreed
  • paying utility bills such as gas and electricity if this was agreed with the landlord
  • in most cases paying the council tax, water and sewerage charges
  • keeping the property reasonably clean
  • not damaging the property and ensuring your guests do not damage the property
  • using the heating properly
  • carrying our minor maintenance, like checking smoke alarm batteries

If you do cause damage to the property or supplied furnishings then the landlord may be able to charge you for the cost of repairs or withhold some or all of your deposit.

Can I get Legal Aid for Housing problems?

Legal Aid is available to help with housing problems and Norrie Waite and Slater are specialists in this field.

If you are not entitled to legal aid we may still be able to help you.

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