Who is responsible for repairing what is one of the most common causes of disagreement between landlords and tenants. Disputes may be common, but that can be cold comfort for tenants whose homes are in disrepair or unfit to live in. In such situations, it may be necessary to take action by making a housing disrepair claim.
Making a housing disrepair claim
One of the first things to do is determine what repairing obligations have been placed on both the landlord and the tenant, and the standard of repair required. These are found:
- In the tenancy agreement – most tenancy agreements contain express terms dealing with repairs. Exactly what these mean and the scope of the obligations imposed will depend on the contract, read as a whole.
Sometimes repairing obligations are also implied. For example, in letting out a furnished property, the landlord implicitly undertakes that it’s fit for habitation. Other examples of when a landlord will be under an implied obligation to repair include where the disrepair relates to an essential means of access that the landlord has control over, or if the tenant can’t carry out a repair unless the landlord does their repairs first.
- In statute – the main statutory repairing obligation requires the landlord to maintain the structure and exterior of the premises and keep installations, such as water, electricity and gas, working.
Sometimes the law will extend the scope of an obligation that’s in the lease. For example, a landlord is responsible for making sure the tenant, and anyone else in the property, are safe from suffering personal injury or damage caused to their property because of defects.
The landlord has to be aware of the disrepair they’re responsible for fixing before a claim can be made. If the matter remains unresolved, you can make a housing disrepair claim.
Before a claim can be formally started, the pre-action protocol for housing disrepair cases must be followed. The aims of the protocol are to:
- Avoid unnecessary litigation
- Promote the speedy and appropriate carrying out of any repairs which are the landlord’s responsibility
- Ensure that tenants receive any compensation to which they are entitled as speedily as possible
- Encourage the early exchange of information
- Keep the costs of resolving disputes down
If the protocol is followed and a settlement can’t be reached, the claim can be taken to court.
Housing disrepair: why choose us?
We’ve vast experience helping tenants get their landlords to meet their responsibilities, whether their landlord is a housing association or council. We’ll help you figure out the repairing obligations that apply and explore the available options. We’ll always try to ensure you take the best course of action for getting repairs carried out quickly and properly, and that you’re fully compensated for any loss or injury you’ve suffered.
If you choose us, you’ll have a dedicated solicitor or team of solicitors who are committed to:
- providing support throughout the entire process
- delivering quality of service
- keeping costs down
You don’t need to worry about the expenses involved in bringing a claim. Our housing disrepair solicitors offer a variety of funding options, will be upfront about the costs involved and take on cases on a no win no fee basis.
Contact a Tennant Advice Solicitor, Liverpool, England and Wales
Starting the process couldn’t be easier. Simply contact our experienced housing disrepair lawyers on 0333 3052 841 for a free consultation. If we can accept your case and you want us to help you, we’ll send you a claim pack and your solicitor will begin the process.