by Ed Firmin
Posted on Friday, December 18th, 2015 at 10:00
Recent research showed that almost 50% of tenants experience delays getting repairs done. Research from earlier in the year said that 55% of tenants had to fund their own repairs at some point in their tenancy, and half of tenants would like their landlord to undertake repairs quicker than they do.
Landlords have a duty of care to their tenant and are obliged to undertake repairs or make replacements in a timely manner.
So how can landlords ensure they are on top of any repairs that need to be made in order to keep their tenants happy?
One way is to have someone manage it for you! A letting agent usually has great relationships with local tradesman and will be able to call on them at short notice to get repairs carried out. And if they can’t do it, there will be someone else they can use, so they’re not just reliant on one or two people. The tradesmen will be used to working with letting agents, so understand the importance of getting work done quickly, and to a standard that’s satisfactory and compliant.
We will always respond to tenants quickly, and advise them how to keep safe, or undertake any immediate action needed whilst repairs are being arranged, such as advising them how to turn the water or gas off, for example.
As a guideline, any major repairs that leave tenants without gas, electricity or heating (especially in the winter) should be repaired within 24 hours.
For repairs that are less serious, you should really have it fixed within 3-4 days.
If you do find that the repairs are taking longer than expected, don’t leave your tenants in the dark about what’s going on. Be open, honest and upfront, and you’ll find that they are a lot more understanding in return.
And compensate them for the delay. Provide portable heaters if they need, or find an alternative suitable place for them to get washed if there’s no water. Things breaking down aren’t anyone’s fault (most of the time!) so if you can show that you are dealing with it to the best of your ability, there are likely to be less disputes between you going forward.
If you would like some information about how I can help manage your property for you, please get in touch.