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Topics / Roles and responsibilities 

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368 views 1 replies latest reply: 20 November 2016

I have just been reading your articles about tenant and landlord responsibilities with regards to damage to contents as a result of faluts and repairs in the property. 

In the last year of renting I have had to move twice after experiencing two bad leaks that caused bad damp/mould and which the landlord refused to attend to at first or authorise repairs due to the cost he assumed he would have to cover himself, that was until I had the environmental health officers involved. After 4 months of moving into the property and a delay in completing the repairs, I had to move out due to major repairs needed and eventually find another place to rent (thus having to pay out more tenant letting fees).  The Landlord only agreed to carry out the repairs when he found out that he could claim on his insurance to cover the repairs. However, the repairs also occured due to poor maintenance/neglect of the property.

There was a leak discovered in the roof caused damp patches to appear in ceiling in the main upstairs bedroom and there was a leak in the pipe under the kitchen floor) and failure of the Letting Agent (Entwistle Green ) in carrying out proper house inspections that would have identified these problems much earlier.  As a result some of my own furniture and belongings had to be thrown out due to being damaged by the damp.   I was told that I would not be able to claim compensation for the damage to my belongings and would have to claim off my own insurance for contents. However, I would have had to pay £250 excess first and decided not to bother.  Now I have found a nicer flat to rent, but recently my landlord fitted a wall mounted oil radiator and due to a fault the oil gel inside the radiator, this has leaked onto my new rugs!   I have been told that I may have to claim on my contents insurance (again!) for this. Although I understand this is an accident and not the fault of the landlord who has been a good landlord.  I am puzzled as to the law with regards to “‘Tenants and Landlords Responsibilities”.  Apparently, TENANTS ARE RESPONSIBLE AND OBLIGED BY LAW to cover the costs of accidental damage to the landlord’s property, including furniture/contents.  However, the LANDLORD IS NOT RESPOSIBLE OR OBLIGED BY LAW to cover the cost of accidental damage to a tenant’s contents due to damage as a result of faulty equipment.  This has totally thrown me – is this fair or right??  I dont think so, and I CAN’T WAIT UNTIL I AM TOTALLY FREE OF MY TENANT SHACKLES AND AM A HOME OWNER/OCCUPIER AGAIN!  

I would be grateful if others could tell me what you think about this 

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Unfortunately, this is all true. 

If you cause accidental damage to the property and contents that belong to the landlord – you’ll be liable to pay.

If the property has experienced a breakdown where some if YOUR stuff is damaged – you need to contact your content insurance company (if there is any) to claim for compensation. The landlord takes no responsibility except if they directly damage your property, or due to negligence towards repairs have caused extensive damage to your belongings. 

You need to take a deep breath and let it go. Sorry to be a messenger of bad news.

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