As a tenant, you take on the role of a “householder” and certain responsibilities.
In law, these responsibilities are captured in the expression that you need to behave in a ‘tenant like manner’. Basically, this means that there will be certain things that, as a tenant, you will need to do as part of your normal occupancy of any property. This would include things such as:
- Changing light-bulbs, fuses, batteries in smoke detectors etc.
- Re-pressurising a combi-boiler having been given instruction on how to do so (although if this is a recurrent problem, you should report this)
- Bleeding radiators
- Cleaning windows
- Unblocking toilets and sinks.
- Mowing lawns and keeping the gardens tidy (unless explicitly catered for in the tenancy agreement)
- Putting bins out
- Taking care of pests such as ants and wasps during seasonal changes
- Wiping away excess moisture from windows due to condensation
In short, all the little jobs around the place which a “reasonable tenant” would do – the things that we just need to accept as part of ‘everyday life’. Most people are very reasonable and understand when these issues are pointed out. Certainly, landlords don’t expect to be charged for call outs to change fuses, bulbs and the like.
A helpful check before you ask for a call out is the question... would I call someone in and pay for it if this was my house?