If you’re a renter, then the responsibility for repairs for the property you are living in, falls squarely on the shoulders of the landlord you pay your rent to. Your property can still be classed as being in disrepair, if any required repairs or maintenance are not carried out by your landlord, in a timely and effective manner.
So, if you’ve been waiting a long time for the repairs or you feel as though the repairs that have been carried out are not fit-for-purpose, and you don’t know where to turn, then St Helens Law are on hand to help you get through this difficult time.
Expectations of a landlord
So, what can you realistically expect your landlord to do? Morally, landlords shouldn’t expect you to live in a home that has fallen into disrepair and is unsafe but legally, there is irrefutable legislation around what is required
Section 11 of the Housing Act of 1985 sets out that landlords are ‘expected to keep the structure and exterior of the dwelling-house well repaired’ at all times, ensuring the property is of a consistently suitable, liveable condition. And the legislation doesn’t just stop there.
They need to ensure that your water, gas and electricity supply is in good working order, completing any repairs when necessary. This also takes care of any sinks, baths, showers and toilets etc within the property – however does not apply to appliances making use of the supply of gas, electricity and water.
Usually an organisation or company, such as a local authority or housing association, a social housing landlord is still bound by the same governing legislation as private landlords – making sure your property doesn’t fall into a state of disrepair and remains fit-for-purpose all-year-round.
When expectations aren’t met
If you’ve continually asked your landlord for certain repairs, either inside or outside of the home, and they are still not being undertaken, then you may have good grounds for a housing disrepair claim.
Before lodging this claim, however, it is often advisable to make one last ditch attempt with your landlord, to ask them if they will carry out the repairs. If a reasonable amount of time then passes and the repairs still haven’t been carried out, then our Housing Disrepair Team here at St Helens Law are on hand to guide you through the process.
We offer an initial, 30-minute consultation, which is free of charge, following which you will be provided with a written estimate for any costs moving forward (it’s important to note that we do not accept legal aid). More often than not, we are able to act as your legal counsel in housing disrepair cases on a ‘no-win, no-fee’ basis – meaning there will be no legal costs to you as the claimant in the matter.