Part of managing a rental property is covering repairs, both routine and emergency repairs. To make sure you’re correctly using your resource as the Landlord or Property Manager, be aware of your responsibilities when it comes to rental property repairs.
When it comes to emergency repairs, the property owner is always responsible. You must respond to a tenant’s request within 24 to 48 hours. If you do not respond, your tenant is allowed to organise by themselves a repair of up to a maximum value of two weeks’ rent.
According to the Residential Tenancies Authority of Queensland, these are some examples of emergency repairs:
- a burst water service or a serious water service leak
- a blocked or broken toilet
- a serious roof leak
- a gas leak
- flooding or serious flood damage
- serious storm, fire or impact damage
- a failure or breakdown of the gas, electricity or water supply
- a failure or breakdown of an essential service or appliance on the property for hot water, cooking or heating
If the tenant is the one to pay the repairer, they will need to give all the receipts to the property owner or manager, who must reimburse the tenant back within seven days.
In Queensland, the RTA states that the primary obligation of the lessor is to provide the tenant with a property that is clean and fit to live in and, at the same time, giving regard for the safety and health of the tenant. Regular repairs and maintenance will provide your tenant with a clean and fit property as well as ensuring your investment is meeting the best standards.
Some important routine repairs and maintenance work to add to your to-do list are storm and fire preparations, termite inspections, pest control, air conditioner maintenance and gardening maintenance.
As always, communication is vital. Make sure all lines of communication are open and everything is put into writing. Provide your tenant with adequate notice regarding the type of work to be carried out, what time and the tradespeople involved in the process.
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