In an ideal world, renting out your property would come trouble-free, with no repairs or general upkeep to worry about, and for your tenants, the ideal runs along the same lines. The reality, of course, is that fixtures and fittings, furnishings and appliances have a shelf life, and the need for minor repairs during the time you rent out your property is inevitable. Landlords have a responsibility to keep their properties to a decent living standard for their tenants, and while there will always be varying opinions on the seriousness of a stained carpet or a broken door handle, there can be no doubt that both landlord and tenant benefit from repairs to these kinds of problems.
Problems can arise, which can cause a headache for the renter; living with a stuck lock or a constantly dripping tap can quickly move from a minor irritant to something which the tenant feels is a real concern. Stepping in before the issue hits this point is always a good idea for any smart landlord. It can help to prevent minor faults becoming major problems, and can ensure a smooth relationship with your tenants. If a tenant receives a speedy response when reporting something in need of minor repair, they will feel confident that anything major would also be dealt with efficiently. Fixing and maintaining as you go along, and carrying out thorough assessments in between tenancies, will also keep your property in sound condition for a long renting future.
Keeping a structurally sound building, maintaining piping and drains, and keeping common areas such as hallways and staircases in good condition is also the responsibility of the landlord. Together with these requirements comes making sure that plumbing and heating are running safely. Repairs to these areas can rarely be put off; assessing the severity of the fault is always advisable in the first instance and will offer some peace of mind to your tenant.
As a landlord, there is a lot to consider, and numerous legal requirements and safety obligations to meet. The law is clear on areas such as fire and gas safety regulations and when it comes to electrical safety, failing to act on your obligations as a landlord can expose you to significant financial risks and could potentially lead to fines being imposed and invalidate your insurance. When considering the electrical installation in a rented property, the requirements can seem somewhat mind-boggling, especially for first-time or “accidental” landlords. The following points may be helpful to note:
- Make sure your property has adequate RCD protection
- Check that all appliances you provide, such as kettles, cookers, etc, have at minimum the CE marking (the manufacturer’s claim that it meets all the requirements of European law)
- Use a registered electrician for any work on your property
- Carry out regular safety checks on the electrical appliances provided as part of the rental agreement
For further information on requirements for landlords when renting out a property, contact C&D Properties.