In the winter months, housing disrepair can have particularly bad consequences for a tenant. This is because the winter months come with severe weather – cold and rain. If you experience housing disrepair in this time then you are more likely to also experience the effect of the elements. Therefore, if your landlord is not completing repairs on your property in a reasonable amount of time, you should think about contacting a lawyer very quickly during the winter months, to avoid catastrophic consequences.
Rain and Housing Disrepair
Heavy rain turns a leaking roof or window into a nightmare. This is because the water that gets into the property can damage your possessions – clothing, electrical items and furniture. If your roof starts leaking whilst the weather is bad your landlord should get it fixed as a matter of urgency. If they do not get the roof fixed in a fair amount of time and the leaking causes damage to your property they could be liable to provide you with financial compensation for both the inconvenience of the leaking roof, and the cost of the damaged items. For this reason, make sure you keep photographic evidence of any water damage that occurs.
Cold and Housing Disrepair
Cold is a worrying one, particularly if you are elderly or have young children. If your heating breaks during the winter months this is once again a problem that your landlord should fix as a matter of serious urgency. Cold weather can cause serious illness, especially in vulnerable individuals. If your landlord’s failure to fix a problem with heating or plumbing during the winter then causes you or your loved ones harm, you are likely to be able to make a successful claim for housing disrepair compensation.
What Shall I Do If I Am Experiencing Housing Disrepair In The Winter?
First of all, as a tenant you have a couple of responsibilities when it comes to housing disrepair in the winter, and at any other time of year. The first is that you must inform the landlord of the problem. If they do not know there is an issue they cannot address it. You may wish to do this in writing so it is on record, just in case.
The second is that you must allow your landlord fair access to the property to make the repairs. Again, if they cannot get to the problem, they cannot remedy it. Your landlord should usually give you about 24 hours notice before entering the property and should complete repairs during sociable hours.
Finally, if you have done the above, you have repeatedly contacted your landlord regarding a problem and it has not been dealt with in a reasonable amount of time you should contact a lawyer immediately. They will be able to tell you whether you have viable grounds to make a housing disrepair compensation claim and will take you through the proper legal process to attempt to get your landlord to complete the repairs on your home.