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When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

Landlord repairs

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE

You should report any damage or disrepair to your landlord immediately. It's always a good idea to follow up any reports you make over the phone or in person with a letter so both you and your landlord have a record of any work that needs to be done.

A repairs grant is available to help cover the cost of carrying out repairs required after your local council has issued a Notice of Disrepair on a protected tenancy or a Public Health Notice on any other property. You can get up to £7,500 depending on the type of work needed.

Most housing associations have a Right to Repair scheme for their tenants. The point of these schemes is to make sure that tenants can get low cost, urgent repairs done quickly.

You should give your landlord a reasonable amount of time to carry out repairs. If you are having difficulty contacting your landlord or your landlord has refused to carry out essential repairs you may be able to get help from your local council.

Housing Executive tenants have rights which are set out in law. You are an introductory tenant for the first year of your tenancy. After 12 months you’ll become a secure tenant. Secure tenants have stronger rights than introductory tenants.

You are expected to maintain the property to a certain standard and are usually obliged to carry out certain repairs.

You’ll be responsible for dealing with many of the repairing issues in your home. Tenants are responsible for decorating the inside of the property, including carpeting and flooring and you’ll also be responsible for looking after your garden. Your landlord will usually deal with any structural problems or faults with the heating, plumbing and electrical systems.

Generally, you will be liable for any repairs to the structure of the property and furnishings which were supplied with the letting and the tenants will be liable for repairs to their own items or for repairing any damage which is their fault. You should specify repairing obligations in your tenancy agreement.

This video explains some of the things landlords who rent out property in Northern Ireland must do to follow the law.  

If the tenant has caused damage to the property, you are entitled to financial compensation for any repairs you carry out. This compensation can only be awarded by the courts so it's essential that you keep records of any evidence which will support your claim that the damage is the fault of the tenants.

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