Your landlord is responsible for making sure the following are kept in good repair and that your house is not in disrepair:

  • the structure and exterior of the property
  • the installations for water, gas, electricity and sanitation
  • heating and hot water systems

This is set out at section 11 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985.

A landlord should also keep the electrical wiring safe and keep in good repair any appliances included as part of the tenancy agreement (e.g. washing machines).

The most common problems in rented properties are: are:

  • damp and mould
  • roof leaks
  • electrical hazards
  • leaking pipes and blocked toilets
  • blocked drains

You as a tenant would be responsible for minor main maintenance issues such as checking smoke alarms and batteries, replacing lightbulbs and for any appliances you bring to the property.
Your home should meet the Decent Homes Standard, if you rent the same from a council or housing association.

These standards state that homes should be:

  • warm
  • energy efficient
  • safe to live in
  • not cause illness or harm to the
  • occupiers

Council tenants may find that small repairs come under the right to repair scheme. The scheme lists repairs that have to be done within a specified time limit. A tenant may be eligible to claim compensation if the repair is not done within the time limit.

All rented properties must meet certain standards t to make them safe to live in. The Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) is used to assess these standards.

The HHSRS takes into account lots of potentially dangerous things, including:

  • dampness, condensation and mould
  • growth
  • infestations (cockroaches, rats, vermin)
  • unacceptable noise levels
  • broken glass, falling plaster, dangerous or rotten stairs
  • gas / electrical installations that are faulty/ dangerous
  • blocked drais or problems with the rubbish/ sewage
  • smoke fumes/ gases
  • damaged asbestos