Maintaining standards of repair for private rented properties
Private landlords have a legal responsibility to ensure that a rented house meets a legal standard of repair called the Repairing Standard.
The Repairing Standard
Landlords of privately rented properties must follow these rules:
- The property must be wind and water tight in all other respects reasonably fit for people to live in.
- The structure and exterior (including drains, gutters and external pipes) must be in a reasonable state of repair and in proper working order.
- Installations for supplying water, gas and electricity and for sanitation, space heating and heating water must be in a reasonable state of repair and in proper working order.
- Any fixtures, fittings and appliances that the landlord provides under the tenancy must be in a reasonable state of repair and in proper working order.
- Any furnishings that the landlord provides under the tenancy must be capable of being used safely for the purpose for which they are designed.
- The property must have a satisfactory way of detecting fires and for giving warning in the event of a fire or suspected fire.
Every landlord who is required to register as a private landlord must comply. A letting agent may rent a property on behalf of a landlord but the landlord is still responsible for complying with the Repairing Standard.
Tenants have a right to refer matters to the Private Rented Housing Panel if they have notified their landlord of a problem and it is not attended to satisfactorily or there is a disagreement over whether or not there is a problem. The panel has the power to make a landlord carry out work necessary to meet the Repairing Standard.