by Rajiv Singh, 11-09-2021

What are the landlord's responsibilities for repairs to a rented property?

Tenants are entitled to a property suitable for human use when they sign a tenancy agreement. It must have basic utilities such as electricity, gas, and water. It must have functional sanitation facilities such as a sink, toilet, and bathroom. It must be safe and structurally sound. We'll discuss these details below. The property must be maintained in the same condition it was before the tenant moved in. The owner must fix any issues that have not been addressed during the letting process.

You can schedule any non-essential repairs once you move in. However, the property must be free of all hazards before anybody goes into occupation. Human lives can be at risk from unsafe electrical wiring, gas pipes leaking or unstable supports. If a landlord allows tenants to live in his or her home, he/she can be charged with a criminal offense.

Not all systems and structures must be maintained by the landlord. They do not have to make any improvements to the property or make it more appealing to tenants. This is at the property owner's discretion. This can be done in the tenancy agreement but is not required by law.

Landlords need to repair and maintain basic utilities systems

A property must provide basic utilities in order to be suitable for daily living. For the supply of basic utilities, the property owner must ensure that they are in good condition.


Landlords are required to provide safe and functional fixed electrical installations. These include but are not limited to:

Wiring circuits
Light fittings
Circuit boards
Regular checks should be made to ascertain electrical wiring is in good working order. Tenants' safety is paramount, so it is important to fix any malfunctions quickly. The Electrical Safety First recommends landlords to carry out installation inspections every five years. A registered professional must perform these inspections. These inspections are required for HMO landlords.

If the landlord supplied electrical appliances, they must make sure they work properly.

These appliances include:

Washing machines
Television and audio systems
Electric cookers
The landlord is not responsible for electrical appliances that are the property of tenants. They are at the tenant's discretion.

Renting properties must be gas safe. Gas appliances, fittings and installations must all be in good working order. This applies to private and communal areas, regardless if tenants have access.

All landlords are required to arrange an annual gas safety check by a Gas Safe registered engineer. Before letting tenants, they must obtain a gas safe certificate. Every tenant must have a copy of the certificate before they move in. It must also be kept for at most two years.

Anyone who knowingly uses unsafe gas equipment is guilty of a criminal offense. The matter should be treated with the utmost respect Always require the gas safety certificate prior to renting a property.


The landlord must supply running water. This includes:

Water tanks
The plumbing systems, pipes and drains that they are connected to. Water systems and facilities must be kept in good shape during the rental period. The landlord should have the plumbing service done by a professional. If they are able, the tenant can do smaller repairs like unblocking drains.

Installations for heating and hot water

The landlord must repair and keep in working condition the heating and hot water installations. A certified Gas Safe engineer must inspect gas boilers and heaters every year.

The inspection of electric heaters and boilers should be done every five years. Tenants are more likely to report malfunctions than take any action regarding maintenance. They can bleed the heating radiators, however. Bleeding the radiators relieves the system of trapped air and improves the power and efficiency.


Property must always have a clean and well-maintained sanitation facility, including a toilet and bathroom. Access to a functioning toilet is vital. It's obvious. Blockage of the drains is the most common problem. This is usually a simple fix for tenants. There are more serious problems with plumbing. The landlord should take the initiative to arrange repairs that are more urgent.

Fire and Smoke Alarms

Landlords should ensure that there are smoke, fire and CO2 alarms working on all levels of their property. Tenants should check and change the batteries regularly. The landlord should be notified if an alarm continues to malfunction and asked for repairs.

Landlords are responsible for maintaining the exterior and structure of the property.

Guttering and roof

Roofs must be in good condition for tenants. You should not have any leaks or damp leaking through the tiles.

Roof support beams, as well as internal construction, should be checked for rot. To prevent any misfortunes, loose tiles should be repaired. Guttering should always be inspected and cleaned of leaves, sticks, and other materials. A blocked gutter can cause water damage and spillage onto exterior walls. Rain gutters must be connected properly so that water doesn't drip from the seams.

Damp and mould is a frequent problem in the UK and is hard to treat effectively and permanently. It is important to eliminate all causes of damp and mold before they occur!

Exterior pipes and drains

To prevent water from leaking onto your property, drains and pipes that are outflowing should be checked and maintained.

Exterior walls and foundations

Cracks and deformation should be addressed in walls and foundations. These problems will only get worse over time so it is important to fix them as soon as possible. The landlord is fully responsible for fixing problems with the structure and load bearing elements of the property.

Ceilings, floors and walls in the interior

Before moving in, you should treat any tears, cracks or holes. The tenant may be responsible for decorating or repainting the property at the end of their tenancy, depending on the terms of the agreement. This should be discussed and agreed upon from the beginning.

They are responsible for any damage to the interior, including mould, caused by problems in areas that have been assigned to them.

Doors and windows

All windows and doors, particularly outer ones, should be sealed tightly and properly closed. Landlords have the responsibility to fix:

Squeaking hinges
Sealants that have been eroded
Malfunctioning locks and handles
Rotten window frames
Broken glass
These repairs can be done by the tenant easily. To avoid conflicts, coordinate it with your landlord.

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About Rajiv Singh

A Chartered Accountant in UK with 15+ years of experience in FinTech Consulting, Accounting & International Taxation. I enjoy being a Social, Foodie and Father of two young children, reachable at

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