Private housing repairs

Who is responsible for repairs?

What your landlord must do

Your landlord is always responsible for repairs to:

  • the property’s structure and exterior
  • basins, sinks, baths and other sanitary fittings including pipes and drains
  • heating and hot water
  • gas appliances, pipes, flues and ventilation
  • electrical wiring
  • any damage they cause through attempting repairs

Your landlord is usually responsible for repairing common areas, like staircases in blocks of flats. This information should be in your tenancy agreement.

Tenant responsibilities

You should only carry out repairs if the tenancy agreement says you can.

You can’t be forced to do repairs that are your landlord’s responsibility.

If you damage another tenant’s flat, eg if water leaks into another flat from an overflowing bath, you’re responsible for paying for the repairs. You’re also responsible for paying to put right any damage caused by your family and friends.

Repairs - A Guide for Landlords and Tenants (PDF 429kb)

If your property needs repairs

Contact your landlord if you think repairs are needed. Do this straight away for faults that could damage health, like faulty electrical wiring.

You should continue to pay your rent while waiting for repairs to be done.

Your landlord should tell you when you can expect the repairs to be done.

If repairs aren't done

If your repairs are not done contact us for help. We can take action if we think the problems could harm you or cause a nuisance to others.

If your house isn't fit to live in

If you think your home is unsafe, contact private sector housing. We'll do a 'Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) assessment' and take action if we think your home has serious health and safety hazards.

Gas safety

Every year about 30 people die from carbon monoxide poisoning caused by gas appliances and flues which have not been properly installed or maintained. Many others also suffer ill health. 

The Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 specifically deal with the installation, maintenance and use of gas appliances, fittings and flues in domestic and certain commercial premises. They place duties on certain landlords to ensure that gas appliances, fittings and flues provided for tenants’ use are safe.

A guide to landlords’ duties: Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 (PDF)

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