Your landlord is responsible for most repairs in your council or housing association home.
Conditions in your home
Your council or housing association home should have:
- safe electrics and wiring
- water and working plumbing
- secure windows and doors
If your home has a gas supply, your landlord must arrange annual gas safety checks.
From 20 March 2019 landlords must make sure a property is fit to live in, but not all tenancies are covered immediately.
The council or housing association is responsible for most repairs in your home including:
- gas appliances
- heating and hot water
- toilets, baths, pipes and sinks
- electrical wiring and any appliances they provide
- common areas such as lifts and communal entrances
- the structure and exterior of the building – including the roof, walls, windows and external doors
Your tenancy agreement sets out any extra responsibilities your landlord has.
Your landlord won't have to fix damage caused by you or your guests. If they do repair something you've damaged, you can be charged for this.
If your landlord doesn’t do repairs
Contact your council or housing association landlord again if they take too long to do repairs or don't keep to an agreement about what should be repaired.
You can make a complaint if you're not happy with their response.
Damage to your home during repairs
Your landlord should fix any damage caused by their repair or maintenance work.
You can ask for a rent reduction if you can't use all or part of your home because of repair work.
If you need adaptations due to a disability
Your landlord must make reasonable adaptations to your home if needed.
You need your landlord's permission for disability-related adaptations but they can't withhold consent unreasonably.
If the work costs between £1000 and £30,000 and your landlord won't fund it, you may able to get a disabled facilities grant to pay for the work.
Your responsibilities include:
- reporting repairs
- keeping your home and garden reasonably clean and tidy
- fixing or paying for any damage caused by you or your guests
- carrying out minor jobs such as replacing smoke alarm batteries and light bulbs
Your tenants' handbook or agreement might set out any other responsibilities you have.
Decorating your home
You're usually responsible for decorating your home.
Your landlord could be responsible for redecoration:
- if damp or disrepair damaged your home
- following damage caused by repair work
Ask your landlord to pay something towards redecoration costs if the property is in a poor state of decoration when you start your tenancy.
Furnishing your home
Your home is usually unfurnished unless you're in temporary or supported housing.
You're expected to provide your own:
- domestic appliances
You're responsible for repairing or replacing them.
If you can't afford to repair or replace things you may be able to apply for a:
- budgeting advance - if you get universal credit
- budgeting loan - if you get income support, JSA, ESA or pension credit
You need your landlord's permission to make improvements to a council or housing association home. Landlords don't usually have to carry out improvements.
Improvements could include:
- a gas fire
- wooden flooring
- new bathroom or kitchen
- an extension or conservatory
Your landlord won't usually have to repair anything which belongs to you.
Last updated 20 Mar 2019 | © Shelter
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