Who should do the repair and maintenance work on rented accommodation? This is mainly maintenance or repair work, which is often difficult to distinguish if its execution weighs on the lessor or the tenant. But this also concerns compliance work, the execution of which follows a different regime.

The work charged to the lessor

In general, all repairs affecting the walls, floor or ceiling of the room and all the elements incorporated therein will be qualified as significant (degradation of beams, walls, plumbing pipes, electrical network, cumulus , heating, etc.).

He must also take responsibility for all repairs and damage due to normal and prolonged use of the premises. These are renovations linked to the dilapidated condition of the premises, such as the renovation of paintings, wallpapers, parquet floors, tiles, etc. which will generally be carried out between two rentals.

To note :

This is the reason why a lessor cannot oblige a tenant to refurbish the accommodation when he leaves the premises, nor submit such work to the return of the deposit. Such work is legally charged to him.

The maintenance and repairs of common areas including letterboxes, elevators, doors, but also ... Windows and shutters.

Work made necessary by the occurrence of a force majeure event such as a fire or a gas explosion. In such a case, the work will be covered by the lessor's and the lessee's insurers.

The work charged to the tenant

In general, the tenant must take care of the day-to-day maintenance of the accommodation to keep it in good condition.

The lessor may, on supporting documents, withhold the amount of rental repairs from the security deposit.

Repair and maintenance work, the list of which is very long, should not be minimized.

Decree n ° 87-712 of August 26, 1987 taken in application of article 7 of law n ° 86-1290 of December 23, 1986 precisely identifies all the work incumbent on the tenant.

In the event of failure of the lessor

If the lessor refuses to carry out the work charged to him to ensure the enjoyment of the premises, the lessee must give him formal notice by registered mail to carry out the necessary work, specifying the time limits within which they must be carried out.

If the lessor refuses or does not respond, the lessee may apply to the district court of the jurisdiction where the premises are located.

To know :

All disputes relating to the lease contract fall under the jurisdiction of the District Court

Therefore, regardless of the amount of the work, only the magistrate is competent to condemn the lessor to their execution.

Two actions are possible:

  • The tenant can seize the judge by asking him tooblige the lessor to do the work. In the event of a conviction, the judge may add a penalty to his decision.
  • The tenant can also apply to the judge to ask be authorized to do the work in place of the lessor. The total amount of the work carried out will be recovered from the amount of future rents.

Compliance work

The main obligation of the landlord is to rent decent accommodation. From a legal point of view this means that he must obey regulations established to protect the health and safety of tenants.

This concerns all the risks associated with asbestos, lead, dilapidated installations (heating, etc.) which must comply with the standards in force.

The tenant can at any time put the owner in default, by registered letter with acknowledgment of receipt, to carry out work to bring them into conformity.

If he refuses, the tenant can seize the magistrate and bring an action for compliance.

The specificity of this action is that the judge will himself set the amount of the work to be carried out (on the basis of quotes produced by the parties, or on expertise) and the time limit for carrying them out.

The judge can also set a penalty and decide to reduce the amount of rent.

To note :

Unlike repair work, the tenant will not be able to do them on his own and be reimbursed on the rents. Unless the owner gives him his express consent to act.

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