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Fridge And Freezer Breakdowns: Who Is Responsible

Breakdowns are the bane of every landlord – and every tenants – life. And there are few instances more irritating than a broken down freezer or fridge, that causes all of the tenants food to spoil. This is guaranteed to upset their week. They might even come barking at the agency for compensation for all the food that has been lost. So where do you as a landlord stand? Is it your responsibility to pay for it and replace the food they’ve lost? If you’re a new landlord who is looking to advertise their property via an online property agent, then why not have a read of our handy little guide regarding responsibilities regarding broken refrigerators below.

Landlord Responsibilities

You as a landlord are one hundred percent responsible for fixing any appliances which break down as a result of mechanical fault. When it comes to food, no, that’s not your responsibility in the slightest. Content insurance on the house will usually cover the contents of a freezer. But, crucially, it does not cover a tenant’s personal possessions.

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You’re not under any legal obligation to pay for your tenants minced beef or vegetarian sausages. However, this is where being a good landlord could make all of the difference. If you really like your tenants and they’ve never given you any issues, then it might be worth sending them a cheque for a token amount to help cover their losses. Far from being a silly suggestion, things like this can really help establish relationships with tenants which lead to much longer tenancies. Something like £20 can go an awfully long way towards proving your good intentions – and it’s a nominal amount to come out of your pocket. Of course, it’s helpful to go out of your way to let the tenants know that you are doing them a favour!

However, if the tenants told you about a faulty refrigerator ages ago and you’ve not inspected or fixed the problem, you may actually be liable!

A freezer breakdown may also be the perfect opportunity with which to think about upgrading it. If it’s been showing its age for a good while, then a temporary fix or even a repair on an old unit may well not be as cost effective as replacing the whole thing altogether in the long term. New units aren’t excessively pricey and one may significantly help reduce your EPC rating.

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