Written by: Ian Harrington on Tuesday 08/03/2016
In the same way that we take our car for a service at regular intervals to ensure it’s running safely and efficiently, Planned Preventative Maintenance Programmes (PPMPs) are a common-sense and cost-prevention measure designed to get to the causes of property problems before they arise. We take a look at some of the most common PPMP issues and find out what your legal obligations as a landlord entail.
Domestic landlords have a legal duty, under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985, to ensure that the residential properties they rent out are habitable and safe. Specifically, the Act requires that the landlord is responsible for the water, electricity and gas supply to a property (and ensure that any gas fittings are checked annually by a registered CORGI gas engineer); that drains and plumbing function effectively; that central heating and hot water systems work correctly; that the electrical sockets etc in the property are safe; that the roof is in good order; the guttering, drains and exterior pipes are free from debris; and that the exterior walls, windows and doors are sound.
For commercial landlords, the onus of responsibility is on the health and safety of your tenants – the emphasis is on such issues as the safety of any electrical appliances on the premises, whether there is asbestos there (and how to deal with maintenance and repair issues safety in light of this), and ensuring that any gas supply entering the property is safe. Other duties of care include the general maintenance and upkeep of the property to ensure that it is ‘fit to lease’. The details of the lease you hold with your tenants will specify exactly what is your responsibility and what is theirs, so when you’re having it drafting, make sure you specify precisely what you are prepared to undertake – it may be that you do not wish to deal with fire safety or fixtures & fittings, so make it clear at the outset.
It all sounds fairly straightforward. However, if you have a property portfolio of more than one or two properties, regular maintenance can become an issue that’s difficult to deal with. This is where a PPMP can be of benefit. A thoughtfully-designed and -implemented PPMP will take the headache out of regular maintenance tasks and free up your valuable time.
It clearly makes sense, as some politicians tell us, to fix the roof when the sun shines, and this is a good maxim when considering a maintenance schedule. There are a number of apps available which, if you have a good network of reliable tradespeople, are organised and have the time to deal with such things, may be of benefit. However, for the majority of both residential and commercial property owners this simply isn’t feasible. A far more effective method of implementing a PPMP is to hand over the responsibility to a reputable and experienced property management team such as Eddisons. They are experts in scheduling routine maintenance and have professionally-trained and -qualified experts in everything, from asbestos removal to water leaks and more, on hand, 24 hours a day. This means that not only can you rely on them plan and deal efficiently with your PPMP, if the unforeseen does occur, your property will be safeguarded and repaired without delay, saving you time, hassle and money.
The details of the lease you hold with your tenants will specify exactly what is your responsibility and what is theirs, so when you’re having it drafting, make sure you specify precisely what you are prepared to undertake – it may be that you do not wish