As a landlord, you have a duty to maintain the property that you are renting out to a tenant so that it is perfectly safe for them and their family to reside in. You must ensure that it meets all the appropriate regulations and that things like gas appliances are checked when required to do so.
The implications of not doing so could be serious. Potentially, in certain situations, you could be putting at risk the lives of your tenants or placing them in danger of suffering serious injury.
The consequences on a landlord not maintaining such a property could also be serious as indicated by one case that recently went to court up in Manchester. Apparently, a landlord was prosecuted earlier this month for not having undertaken certain repairs to a property that he let out.
The tenant had complained about the state of the property they were renting and the property was inspected by local housing officers. They found a number of things that concerned them.
For instance, a smoke detector had not been fitted downstairs. There was a problem with the bedroom windows as they could not be opened at the bottom. The back door was very difficult to open and close so this may have presented a problem should someone have tried to escape through that door if there was a fire in the property. A leak in the bathroom had resulted in the ceiling in the kitchen having cracks, bulges and a hole. There was dampness in the middle of a wall in the lounge.
The council asked for the work to be carried out but the landlord did not. Ultimately, he was taken to court and has been fined £4,000. He is also responsible for paying costs of £1,060.54 plus he must pay £120 as a victim surcharge.
It is vitally important that any tenanted property is well maintained. The financial cost of carrying out any works is no doubt going to be less than the financial consequences of being fined and the safety of your tenants is paramount.