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Property Maintenance

The Landlord is responsible for maintaining and repairing the property throughout the term of the lease, except for normal day to day repairs such as replacing light bulbs. 

Margaret Duffus Leasing will be the first point of contact for the Tenant if your property is fully managed by us.  We will automatically carry out minor repairs and maintenance that are reported by the Tenant or noted at an inspection. up to £200, unless otherwise agreed.  Urgent or emergency repairs will also be dealt with immediately and you will be notified of the action taken.  Details of any maintenance contracts, service agreements or warranties should be given to Margaret Duffus Leasing in advance to ensure that any cover is used when appropriate.   

Margaret Duffus Leasing have an out of hours number for Tenants to call in the event of an emergency.

To minimise repairs and maintenance during a tenancy, the following should be considered before leasing –

Is property in a good state of repair?

  • roof
  • gutters
  • chimneys swept
  • paintwork in and out
  • plumbing/drains
  • garden
  • carpets
  • decoration
  • general condition of fittings/furniture
  • what electrical appliances are you leaving?
  • are you storing anything in the property?

Is it clean?

  • when were carpets/curtains last cleaned?
  • light fittings dusted/washed
  • furniture cleaned
  • kitchen appliances moved/cleaned /replaced
  • windows cleaned, inside and out

Is garden in good condition?

  • grass cut
  • borders weeded
  • trees /shrubs pruned
  • paths /driveways weed free
  • rubbish disposed of
  • outhouses/garages cleared
  • what gardening equipment are you leaving?

We recommend that you provide as much information and guidance to any prospective tenant about your property as possible. We suggest that you compile a folder of information which should contain the instruction manuals and booklets for the various appliances left in the property, useful local information with telephone numbers of dentist, doctor, schools etc., refuse collection days and times etc. and any other dos and don'ts or adivce that you'd like them to be aware of. This will be invaluable to the Tenant and help them to look after your property in the manner that you would expect.

There will be an inventory drawn by an independent, licensed inventory clerk at the start of the lease and this will details the condition of the contents, fixtures and fittings in the property.  The cost of the inventory will be borne solely by the Landlord.  The inventory will be checked at the end of the Lease by the same company and they will assess any damages and deficiencies.

It is important for Landlords to be aware that the Tenant will not be responsible for ‘fair wear and tear’ and will only be charged for damage in excess of this.

When assessing fair wear and tear, the inventory clerk will take into consideration :

  • The original age, quality and condition of any item at commencement of the tenancy
  • The average useful lifespan to value ratio (depreciation) of the item
  • The reasonable expected usage of such an item
  • The number and type of occupants in the property
  • The length of the tenants occupancy

It is an established legal tenet that a landlord is not entitled to charge his tenants the full cost for having any part of his property, or any fixture or fitting, ".....put back to the condition it was at the start of the tenancy."  This would be deemed as ‘betterment’.

The inventory clerk therefore has a duty to adopt the most reasonable and practical and appropriate approach to assessing remedy where there is damage at the end of  a Lease, and it is important for the Landlord to be aware that the tenants' deposit is not to be used like an Insurance policy where you might get "full replacement value" or "new for old".

The appropriate remedies available to a Landlord might range from or include :

  • Replacement of the damaged item where it is either severely and extensively damaged beyond economic repair or, its condition makes it unusable
  • Repair or Cleaning
  • Compensation for diminution in inherent value of the item or the shortening of its useful normal lifespan

Margaret Duffus Leasing carry out regular inspections at their managed properties to check that the Tenant is treating the property well and to inspect for any other repairs and maintenance that the Tenant hasn’t reported or noticed.

Once damages & deficiencies have been assessed by the inventory clerk, all claims will be put to the Tenant for their agreement.  Both parties agreement on all damages and deficiencies is necessary before the Tenancy Deposit Scheme will release the deposit.  In some cases negotiation may be required to reach and agreement and where there is none the Tenancy Deposit Scheme will arbitrate.


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