Opinion

Rentals: What are tenants responsible for?

Signed contract and keys delivered. But when a house is rented there are many doubts about who pays for everything, beyond the evidence of monthly fees. If I’m renting, I want to know “What are tenants responsible for?”

Photo of some people doing paperwork - Rentals: What are tenants responsible for?

When you rent your living space, one element that can most damage the relationship with the landlord is about who should bear the costs of a or repair. The communication between both parties is key. We don’t want confusion or conflict to grow into a more serious incident. If interested in Renting vs Buying in Louisville, follow this link.

It is convenient to know what the law says about it. As established in the Law of Urban Leases, the owner of the rented dwelling is obliged to make arrangements that are necessary to keep the dwelling in “conditions of ability.”

This imposition forces the owner of the property to fix (or replace) everything that has to do with the structural and essential elements of the house. Once informed by the lessee, the landlord must make the following remediation as soon as possible:

  1. Repair, renew or replace any element of the water and drainage system.
  2. Maintain and preserve the roof, the walls, the floor and the fireplace in the home to have it.
  3. Solve any problem related to electrical installation, pipes, and heating.
  4. Replace or repair the thermostat in the event of failure or malfunction.
  5. Repair and replace any damaged appliance if it is not a minor fault such as the breakage of a pilot or the failure or deterioration of a filter.
  6. End any plagues produced by the malfunction of the facilities of the house. Although those caused by the misuse or operation of the exteriors of the block will be the responsibility of the neighborhood community or the local council.

On the other hand, there are certain things that deteriorate or break during the course of everyday life. In all cases, these are the sole responsibility of the tenant. With the rental contract of the house, the landlord contracts the following obligations:

  • Pay all bills of assets that can be measured by individual meters: water, electricity, gas, telephone, etc. Counting also the payment of the expenses of any of these things that can be generated during a breakdown.
  • Any damage that derives from the misuse of the house.
  • Change or repair the blinds, lamps, light bulbs and holes made in the walls by hanging pictures or decoration
  • Fix any electrical problem caused by an overload of the network produced by the connection of more devices than the installation can support.

Emergency Cases

If the property suffers a serious breakdown and the repair cannot wait, the tenant is free to make urgent arrangements that will prevent the damages from going further. Then he can require the landlord to reimburse the cost.

If instead, it is the owner who is forced to perform work before the end of the tenant’s contract, the tenant will be forced to endure it, even if it generates some kind of discomfort or difficulty in the home life.

If this work lasts more than 20 days and precludes the use of one of the departments of the house, the rental price should decrease in proportion to the part of the house that cannot be used during this time.

Unforeseen Situations 

Almost any part of a home can experience a breakdown. Theft is also a possibility. Professionals recommend the purchase of insurance for renters. Homeowners are required by their lenders to have homeowner insurance. These are designed to protect you during unforeseen situations.

There are also flat fee services that ensure the maintenance of your home’s facilities. You pay a fee each month but when a repair is needed, they should be good to cover those costs.

There are times when it’s more difficult to determine who is responsible. A noise complaint is almost always the tenant’s fault. A floor might be the fault of an absent-minded tenant or a problem with the plumbing. There are even cases where the responsible party was the upstairs neighbor.

 

About the author

Tre Pryor, Editor-in-Chief

Tre Pryor is the recognized expert Louisville Realtor who can:
  • List and sell your current home in Louisville,
  • Help you purchase your next Louisville home, or
  • Guide you in your relocation to Louisville, Kentucky
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