Tenant in arrears, can I refuse repair?

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    Tenant in arrears, can I refuse repair?

    My tenant is two months in arrears with his rent and I have served the relevant notices. However the cooker hob has now stopped working - Am I able to refuse this repair due to his arrears?

    #2
    The short answer is 'NO'. You have to keep the premises in good repair or your Section 8 will fail (if that is what you have issued to get an order for possession).



    Freedom at the point of zero............

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      #3
      Originally posted by Interlaken View Post
      The short answer is 'NO'. You have to keep the premises in good repair or your Section 8 will fail (if that is what you have issued to get an order for possession).
      There is no statutory obligation for LL to repair a cooker.

      If the contract does not specify that LL is responsible for repairing the cooker, then the short answer is yes, the LL may refuse to repair it.

      Moreover, even if LL *is* contractually liable, the T would have to counterclaim for damages for the disrepair in order to have any prospect of defeating a s.8 application for possession on this basis. There is no automatic 'fail'.

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        #4
        I wouldn't tell the tenant that you are refusing to repair it because of the arrears.
        What relevant notices have you served?
        Allow tenants to protect their own deposits. I want free money when they do it wrong

        Comment


          #5
          This is from the CAB;
          http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/index/...le_renting.htm

          The landlord’s main responsibilities
          There are certain repairs which will almost always be your landlord’s responsibility, whether or not they are specifically mentioned in the tenancy agreement. These are:-

          •the structure and exterior of the premises (such as walls, floors and window frames) and the drains, gutters and external pipes. If the property is a house, the essential means to access to it, such as steps from the street, are also included in ‘structure and exterior’. Garden paths and steps are also included
          •water and gas pipes and electrical wiring (including, for example, taps and sockets)
          •basins, sinks, baths and toilets
          •fixed heaters (for example, gas fires) and water heaters but not gas or electric cookers


          Many years ago I had a property that was fully managed by a letting agent, due to me working overseas and uncontactable.
          The tenant got into financial difficulties and stopped paying the rent. Section 21 possession proceedings were started.

          The element in the electric oven failed, an electrician made the appliance safe. The letting agent told the tenant the oven would only be repaired once the rent had been paid.

          The tenant went to the council (TRO? EHO?) who then threatened the letting agent/me with legal action unless the oven was repaired.

          The letting agent said they would not repair the oven as they had no statutory or contractural obligation to do so. The council backed down, alegedly after taking legal advice. The arrears were cleared and the oven repaired.

          My understanding was that if an appliance is provided at the start of the tenancy, the landlord has a duty to repair/replace.

          The letting agent was adamant they were legally correct.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by boletus View Post
            The letting agent said they would not repair the oven as they had no statutory or contractural obligation to do so. The council backed down, alegedly after taking legal advice. The arrears were cleared and the oven repaired.

            My understanding was that if an appliance is provided at the start of the tenancy, the landlord has a duty to repair/replace.

            The letting agent was adamant they were legally correct.
            IMO, the letting agent was correct: Repairing an electric oven does not fall within the landlord's statutory obligations (as said in what you quoted from CAB). Then, if tenancy agreement was silent there was no contractual obligation either.

            In any case, in your case it seems likely that council was bluffing.

            Comment


              #7
              offer them a microwave? Really cheap in the supermarkets now!
              Unshackled by the chains of idle vanity, A modest manatee, that's me

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