Many tenants believe they can live a carefree life after getting a home for rent. After all, they are paying their monthly rent in exchange for began allowed to live inside. These tenants believe maintenance is a problem that is the headache of the landlord and they have nothing to think about maintenance. However, keeping the rental property habitable and comfortable is the shared responsibility of both the landlord as well as tenants. In fact, there are certain maintenance responsibilities that need to be shouldered mainly by tenants.
Normally, a tenant is not responsible for wear and tear, but a landlord can blame him for damage caused due to negligence or misuse. Owner can also hold on to the security deposit paid by the tenant to compensate these damages. Therefore, it is in the interest of tenants to shoulder some responsibilities of upkeep and maintenance. Some of these responsibilities are evident while others are intuitive in nature. As a landlord, it is advisable for you to make the responsibilities clear at the time of signing the lease agreement to avoid bitter disputes in future.
Informing landlord about repairs
If something has broken or become faulty, it is the responsibility of the tenant to notify the landlord and ask for repair as soon as noticed. The tenant is certainly not held responsible for repairs in the unit, but he can play his part in maintenance by informing the landlord about an issue so that it does not snowball into a major and expensive repair in future. Tenants are not required to carry out repairs themselves. All they must do is to make a request for repair and the landlord is obliged to fix the issue.
Using appliances responsibly
There are all sorts of electrical fixtures, fittings, and appliances that are provided by a landlord. These include microwave oven, refrigerator, washing machine, dryer, and lamps. The responsibility of the tenants is to use all such appliances in a responsible manner so that they do not get damaged because of negligence or improper use. If an appliance becomes damaged because of negligence on the part of the tenant, landlord can ask for its repair from the tenant. If you do not know how to use an appliance properly, it is important to learn how to use its features to ensure its proper use and maintenance.
Inspection of smoke alarms
Smoke alarms are installed by the landlord at strategic points inside the property. It is done to ensure the safety and security of the tenants and the property. It is the responsibility of the tenants to inspect these smoke alarms to see if they are working properly or not. Tenants should also notify the landlord about replacement of their batteries from time to time.
Removal of snow
Snow removal is usually not the responsibility of tenants unless it has been specified in the lease agreement. However, for their own safety, tenants should cooperate with their landlord and lend a helping hand in the removal of snow form the property.
Removal of trash
All tenants are expected to get rid of trash from their homes to help in maintaining a clean and livable environment in the property. In most cities around the country, civic authorities charge a monthly fee for waste removal. Landlords include this fee in the monthly rent and all that tenants are required to do is to get rid of trash generated in their homes on a regular basis.
Landscaping is normally a responsibility of the landlord. However, some landlords include a clause in the lease to assign some simple yard cleaning tasks to their tenants.