Disputes can often occur between landlords and tenants due to disagreements about rent, disrepair, deposits and service charges. However, with the correct guidance and rules in place, landlords and tenants need not reach the point where the negative consequences are suffered by both parties. There are many options to consider when resolving property disputes.
Tenants making late payments for rent is a common. One way to manage late payment is to impose penalty charges, which will effectively cover the extra administration requirements. This penalty will, however, need to be stipulated in the lease agreement. If no penalty fee is charged, then there is no real consequence for not paying rent on time, and the tenant can make a habit of it.
Damage or neglect to property
It is the tenant’s duty to report any damages made to the property to the landlord in due course. It is the landlord’s responsibility to conduct regular inspections of the property to ensure damage to the property has been reported. The lease agreement must include details on various responsibilities of each party. For example, landlords are obligated to address any repairs that need to be made to the house, granted that these specific repairs are outlined in the lease agreement. On the other hand, tenants have a responsibility to meet the terms and conditions of the property, including maintenance of the property and abiding by noise restrictions.
If a property has been violated or damaged, a written warning will be issued, which will request that the tenant rectify the damage. If the tenant does not adhere to the request, the landlord can legally use the tenant’s deposit to pay for the cost associated with the damage. However, should the damage be a result of wear and tear, the tenant will not be held liable for the replacement or upkeep of these items.
The landlord is responsible for repairing damage to the property caused by general wear and tear, such as leaking roof, plumbing and drain problems and damaged gutters. The landlord will also need to ensure that the property is maintained both internally (windows and doors) and externally (roof and gates). In order to avoid any potential disputes, tenants and landlords must inspect the property together before the tenant moves in, and make a detailed list of damaged items or areas in the property. When discussing damages and repairs, it is also advised that all requests are communicated in writing so that there is proof of the request and the conversation.
In the interest of both parties, it is important for the landlord and tenant to have regular contact to ensure all issues are dealt with effectively, and that no misinterpretations intensify and worsen, leading to an unpleasant situation for both parties.