Landlord & Tenant: Who should be responsible for house maintenance?

The maintenance of a rented house between a landlord and his tenant has generated varieties of opinions by people who have lived and are living in rented apartments the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.
Some landlords usually before you reside in their houses gives rules and regulations of not allowing tenants to repair their property; they prefer the individuals living in the rented apartments to inform their house agent or lawyer for every repair ,while on the other hand some landlords prefers the tenant renovate and maintains any repairs . What if tenants breaks the rules and do the repairs and the other one basically waiting for landlords’ repairs and no repairs happens.
These management responsibilities comes as a basic necessity to the tenants and in some situation the need to maintain and renovate these buildings rises as the taste in people’s lives changes.
Peoples Daily reporters, Beatrice Habila, Nana Yahaya and John Michael, asked yourself this sincerely question despite your landlords can you still maintained rented apartment repairs. FCT resident speaks:
Miriam Ibrahim a resident of Wuse2, said’’when I was about to rent my apartment, the lawyer told me that I’m going to buy my rent which includes money for maintenance of the house that 20%, but when I enter the apartment, there were some repairs to make, but the lawyer told me to repair those affected areas since I can; meanwhile I have paid money for repairs until no refund of what I spent, it has advantage and disadvantage.
Ibrahim further emphasised’’ that from my experiences with different landlords in Abuja, some of these housing experts that have different estates to are trying hard to maintained to maintain their promises but some don’t ‘’.
She stated that, it is the responsibility of both the landlord and tenant makes repairs and renovate relevant places when the need arises
However, A Landlord Kanu Chineze who resides in Utako ,said “I own my house as a landlord, so in this case, I have to provide my tenants with the hospitality that they need which includes, providing the necessary things to supposed them and when there is any of the facilities in the house that is faulty, I will be in charge of fixing everything to my own standards and taste.
In a situation where I request the tenants to repair any property that got damaged, it may results to argument and they might not fix things the way I expect. The tenants also pay for the house rent and other responsibilities should fall under my custody.
The tenants have the rights to refit anything inside the house like changing the color of the house paint, adding flowers to decorate to the environment”.
An Estate Agent based in Abuja, Dele Oladeji, explains that “the responsibilities of maintaining a house are of two aspects. These aspects are considered as the internal and external repairs which are board by both the landlord and the tenant.
Oladeji said The tenant agreement are usually stated by the landlord that is, the major responsibilities of the landlord which are the external maintenances such as fixing the roof if it licks or it got damaged by the wind, fixing the pipelines and drainages within the house, fixing major electrical installations, and also ensure that the fence is in its proper height”.
He said the internal responsibilities which the tenant usually bears are the things the tenant makes use of on daily basis and as a result of daily usage when such things spoil the tenant is responsible for the maintenance of the house hold materials.
“In some cases, the tenancy agreement will clearly states that, the rent is net of all the taxes which means that your are only paying for the rent. In some instances, the tenants pay a certain amount of money for service charges and it will be clearly stated that the fee paid for the services charged will cover all the maintenance of the properties. What are the Rights of a Tenant?
The Estate Surveyor maintained that ‘’the Rights of Tenants is the covenant agreement between the landlord and the tenants. These Right are basically stated as right to peaceful leaving without any depression, and enjoyment of the premises throughout the time agreed on.
“There are also responsibilities that are imposed on the tenants which they must abide by. These responsibilities are: the tenant must not disturb the neighborhood, doing anything contrary to the rules, and also, the tenants must not sublime another people to the house without the landlord notice”.
For Prince Osuji a tenant at Life Camp said, “This depends on the responsibility of the landlord where the tenant is leaving. As a tenant, you are also responsible to take care of the house where you leave”.
Osuji pointed out that, there is a caution fee which the tenants pay for and these fees are used for maintenance cover when the house is messed up by the tenants.
The right that the landlord has is also applicable to the tenants, but in some situations, the tenant has their own rights not because they are the rightful owners of the properties but because there are the occupants of the house.
He said the rights of tenants are:’’ they must not be regulated by the landlord on when to come into the house and when not to come in unless it’s agreed on a lay down rule with the Complex of the estates on a given time or there is and emergency those lead to immediate action on the closure of the gate”.
There is a need for someone to develop patience because there are always misunderstand with the landlord and the tenants. In a rented house the landlord should be responsible for any damage of the house because as a tenant is ensures that the payment and every other fee are paid before moving into the house, Esther ugo a resident in FCT reveals.
Ugo while speaking said” tenants should also make sure the house property is not misused and left unkempt, therefore, if the tenant is not comfortable with the way the house is being handled they are free to park out”.
Also, the landlord should also allow the tenants to enjoy their rights, He is not supposed to force or threaten the tenants in anyway because these might cause a misunderstanding between them.

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