Uncertainty over where tenant/landlord responsibilities lie, says survey

Uncertainty over where tenant/landlord responsibilities lie, says survey

There’s growing uncertainty over where the responsibilities of private sector tenants and their landlords meet, according to research by the Endsleigh insurance firm.

‘Touching up paintwork’, ‘meter readings at the beginning and end of a tenancy’ as well as ‘informing utilities companies and the council of a new occupancy in the property’ are disputed responsibilities by tenants. 60 per cent of tenant respondents consider it as the landlord’s responsibility to ‘touch up paintwork’, yet 45 per cent of landlords cite it as the tenant’s.

Tenants and landlords are also unclear when it comes to the responsibility for ‘pest control’; 32 per cent of landlord respondents believe pest control is the tenant’s responsibility, yet 84 per cent of tenants consider it as the landlord’s.

The biggest discrepancy between what tenants and landlords believe relates to providing meter readings at the beginning and end of the tenancy period. Nearly three quarters (73 per cent) of landlords correctly think it is their tenants’ job to do this, but only 35 per cent of tenants agree.

“Most of the responsibilities for landlords and tenants are well understood by both parties but some things are still confusing. Landlords deal with repairs to fixtures and fittings, boiler servicing, as well as arrange buildings insurance if the property is furnished. Tenants look after tasks such as keeping the garden in check and handle the internet installation” explains Jessica Alomankeh, projects coordinator at the London Landlord Accreditation Scheme.

“At the beginning of a tenancy, landlords should provide tenants with an inventory pack, containing contact details of the current service providers. It’s then up to the tenant to check meter readings and set up new payments with the suppliers” she says.

A total of 2,645 respondents (1,428 UK tenants and 1,217 UK landlords) were surveyed.

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