Who pays for temporary accommodation whilst rental repairs carried out?

Question from Shane updated on 2nd August 2010:

I am currently renting a property where our shower is and has been leaking for sometime (likely long before I moved into the house). The maintenance guy advised that I and my family will likely need to find alternative accommodation for at least one night while the bathroom is dried out and repaired (the floor needs to be lifted etc). Is our landlord obligated to provide or pay for the temporary accommodation (such as a hotel etc)?

Our expert Jeff Montgomery responded:

If the premises will be uninhabitable while the necessary repairs are being carried out, you will need to talk to your landlord about the options available and agree on what is suitable to you both. One option may be that no rent will be payable for the period you are unable to reside in the premises, and that money could be used to pay for alternative accommodation. Another option may be for you to continue to pay rent, and your landlord provides alternative accommodation.

You may also wish to discuss with your landlord compensation for any inconvenience you have experienced because of the leaking shower. If you and your landlord are unable to agree about arrangements during the repairs, you can apply to the Tenancy Tribunal to resolve the matter. To discuss your situation further, you can contact the Department of Building and Housing on 0800 TENANCY (0800 836 262).

The Department of Building and Housing provides information and guidance on building law and compliance, services including weathertight homes, and advice for tenants and landlords.


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