Your rights on repairs

You have a statutory right to get repairs done by your landlord. ‘Statutory’ means it is your right by law.

There are 2 types of laws about getting repairs done:

  1. Housing laws and
  2. Health and safety laws

Any repairs must be done by someone who is qualified to do them.

Housing laws about repairs

Housing law says your landlord must keep these things around your home in good working order:

  1. the pipes and equipment that supply your home with water, gas and electricity and
  2. the inside and outside structure of your home like:
  • roof or ceiling and
  • floors and stairs and
  • walls, windows and doors including the window and door frames and
  • drains, gutters and pipes and
  1. the pipes and equipment that mean you can wash yourself and heat your home like
  • basins and sinks and
  • baths and showers and
  • toilets and
  • boilers for heating and hot water.

Citizens Advice Bureau – landlords main repairing responsibilities

The Government – what private landlords must do

Shelter – tenant and landlord repairing responsibilities

Brent Council – landlords main repairing responsibilities

If you landlord is not doing these repairs choose Sorting out repair problems below.

Health and safety laws about repairs

Health and safety law says your landlord must make sure your home is not a hazard to your health and safety. There is a common way to assess if anything is causing a hazard – the Housing Health and Safety Rating System. It tests if you or your family might suffer because of things like:

  • dampness or too much cold or heat and
  • pollution from things like asbestos, carbon monoxide or lead and
  • not enough space or lighting, too much noise or because your home is not secure and
  • not enough water for proper hygiene and sanitation and
  • the chance of accidents like falls, electric shocks, fires, burns or scalds and
  • the chance of explosions or things collapsing like walls or ceilings.

Shelter – health and safety standards for rented homes

Citizens Advice Bureau – the Housing Health and Safety Rating System

Shelter – what counts as a hazard?

Citizens Advice Bureau – what councils can do

If you landlord is not doing these repairs choose Sorting out repair problems below.

Your responsibilities about repairs

You have responsibilities about repairs as well as rights.

  1. You must tell your landlord or their letting agent about any repair the law says the landlord must sort out. Put this in writing by sending a text, email or letter so you have a record of it. Choose Template letter to report repairs below to help you.
  1. You must give them a reasonable amount of time to put the problem right. What is a ‘reasonable’ amount of time depends on things like;
  • how urgent the repair is
  • how big the repair is
  • if the landlord needs to get a specialist contractor in to sort it out, or just a local repair company

Citizens Advice – tenants’ responsibilities

Citizens Advice Bureau – repair options for social housing tenants

Citizens Advice Bureau – reporting repairs

NHAS – reporting repairs fact sheet

Shelter – template letter to report repairs

Shelter – template letter reminding about repairs

Use your knowledge about rights to repairs to sort out problems. Choose Sorting out repair problems below

Sorting out repair problems

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