How to Handle a Tenant’s Right to Repairs

Tenants have the right to a safe and habitable living space, and are legally entitled to repairs if their rented property is not fit for purpose. It’s important to have clear policies and procedures in place to ensure tenants’ needs are met. This article will share tips on how to handle a tenant’s right to repairs in a professional manner.

Check the Maintenance History

As a landlord or property manager, it’s your responsibility to ensure the tenant’s rental property is suitable to live in. Before you can move forward in any repair-related matters, it’s important to get a full understanding of what has already been done. Check the maintenance history and find out if any repairs or improvements have been completed in the past. Knowing the maintenance history of the rental property will help you and the tenant know what needs to be done to make the rental fit for purpose.

Choose the Type of Repairs

Once you know what needs to be done, it’s a good idea to take the time to decide on the type of repairs and whether it is a ‘major’ or ‘minor’ issue. Major repairs are more serious than minor repairs – if the rental property needs major repair work, the tenant needs to be aware of this. Typical examples of major repairs include broken pipes, leaking roofs, and blocked drains.

Set a Reasonable Timeline

When completing repairs, it’s essential to implement a reasonable timeline. Depending on the extent of the repairs, you should aim to provide the tenant with an estimated timeline for the completion of work. In some cases, certain factors may delay repair work, and in this situation, it’s important to keep the tenant informed of any possible delays.

Keep Records of Communication

In the event of a dispute related to repairs, you should have evidence of all communication with the tenant. Always document repairs and the contractors that carry out any work in the rental property in order to prevent disputes. This is important as it helps you prove that you have met all your legal obligations and ensure that the repairs are completed properly.

Communicate with Other Tenants

If you’re dealing with multiple tenants, it’s important to communicate with all of them regarding any repairs. That way, all tenants in the property will be on the same page and know how to prepare for any repair work.

Advise Tenants on Best Practices

When undertaking repair work, it might be necessary for the tenant to make some changes to the property. Give your tenants some advice on best practices for surviving the repair period. Depending on the type of repairs, the tenant might need to adjust their daily habits to ensure the repair process runs smoothly.

Be Aware of Legal Obligations

Before proceeding with repairs, make sure you’re familiar with the legal requirements you’re obligated to meet. In most cases, the landlord has to repair and maintain the property to a standard that meets health and safety regulations. Additionally, your local area might have specific laws related to rental properties and so it’s important to be aware of these and take the necessary action.

Provide High-Quality Repairs

It’s always important to provide high-quality repairs. To ensure this, make sure you use the best materials and hire a reputable contractor. You want the repairs to be done right, and if done correctly, they should last a long time.

Know Your Rights as a Landlord

As a landlord, you have to know your rights. It’s important to be aware of what you can and cannot do when it comes to tenant repairs. Knowing this information will help you maintain a good relationship with your tenants and ensure that repair work is carried out in a timely manner.

Review Your Insurance and Finances

Before you start any repair work, review your insurance and finances to make sure you’re financially capable of covering the cost of the repairs. This will help you avoid possible problems in the future.

Consider Upgrading the Property

In some situations, it might be necessary to upgrade the property in order to meet regulatory requirements. If this is necessary, it’s important to consider the benefits of doing so. Upgrading the property can improve tenants’ experience and help ensure that all safety standards are met.


When it comes to handling a tenant’s right to repairs, it’s important to take the necessary steps to ensure that repairs are done professionally and in a timely manner. Landlords must have a clear understanding of the maintenance history, choose the type of repairs, make sure they are financially capable of covering the cost of repairs, and review existing insurance plans. By following these steps, you’ll be able to handle a tenant’s right to repairs in an efficient and professional manner.

What happens if a tenant requests repairs that are not necessary or unreasonable?

The landlord must still evaluate the tenant’s request and determine if the repairs are necessary and reasonable. If they are not, the tenant should be informed and no repairs should be made. If the tenant feels that they are necessary, the landlord should discuss the matter with them and try to come to an agreement. If the parties cannot agree, the landlord may consider seeking legal action.

“What are the consequences of a tenant making false repair requests?”

The consequences of a tenant making false repair requests can vary depending on the situation. Landlords may take legal action against a tenant if they think their need for repair is being abused by a tenant. Tenants can face penalties such as a breach of contract, eviction, withholding of security deposit, or even legal costs if they have to take the case to court. False repair requests could also damage relations between tenants and landlords, as well as cause them to miss out on legitimate repairs that may be needed.

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