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Maintenance....who's responsible?


Maintenance....who's responsible?

Keeping an investment property in great condition has many positives for all parties involved with rentals.  

Regular attendance to maintenance keeps the property in good condition but it also attracts tenants when the property is vacant or when tenants are considering whether to extend their lease.  It also makes the job of the Property Manager easier as a well-maintained property is easier to rent, manage, and fosters the relationship between the owner and tenant.

There has long been confusion as to what the landlord is responsible for and what is considered to be tenant responsibility

Without diving too deeply into the Residential Tenancy Act, here are a few rules of thumb


  • Owners are required to ensure the property is safe, clean, and fit to move into at the beginning of the lease.
  • Owners are required to keep the property in a reasonable state of repair ensuring that they comply with health and safety laws as well as building codes.
  • Major items such as electrical, plumbing, and water fall under the owner’s responsibility as well repairs that are considered fair wear and tear.  


  • Tenants are responsible for keeping the property in a clean and hygienic condition. The tenant must also prevent potential maintenance issues from arising. For example, discarding rubbish regularly so as not to attract rodents.  
  • General garden maintenance such as mowing and trimming lawns also falls under the tenants’ responsibilities as well as potential pool maintenance of clearing leaves etc.

One major exception does apply, if the repairs required are found to be caused by the tenant, their guests, or pets, the tenant becomes liable to repair the damage to a satisfactory standard, by a licensed tradesperson where applicable.  

An owner should refer to their management agreement which outlines in more detail their responsibilities and tenants should thoroughly read their tenancy agreement to ensure they know what they’re liable for.