Skip to Content

Basic Rental Property Maintenance: Who Does What?

Saratoga Springs Tenant Replacing a Battery in the Smoke DetectorAs a Saratoga Springs property owner, it is critical to comprehend who is responsible for what with regards to basic rental property maintenance. To keep your rental property in fine condition and profitable, it’s substantial to have a proactive property maintenance system in place. This maintenance may be undertaken by you or by a service technician. On the other hand, there are considerable small maintenance tasks that you can and should expect your tenant to take charge of. Here are a few of the most common rental property maintenance tasks and who is customarily responsible for each one:

Clogged toilets.  If a toilet becomes clogged, it is oftentimes the tenant’s responsibility to fix the blockage. Having said that, there may be exceptions, particularly if the blockage is caused by plumbing concerns unrelated to the tenant’s use. In such a situation, you’d need to handle the repairs yourself or call a professional.

Broken windows. If a window is broken, it could be either the landlord’s or the tenant’s responsibility to repair or replace the window. That is because the responsibility for window replacement lies with the reason and cause of the breakage. If the window was broken due to tenant negligence, they should pay to replace it. Yet, if a window is damaged due to severe weather or other cause out of a tenant’s control, the property owner is responsible for fixing it. Always remember that this is a security issue; mitigation is the key here.

Lightbulbs. Oftentimes, tenants are responsible for replacing lightbulbs in their rental homes. That is because most light fixtures are considered part of the tenant’s living space.

Carpeting and flooring. When you speak of the cleanliness of flooring, this would be a tenant’s responsibility.  If the flooring becomes ugly-looking, damaged, or worn out, then the responsibility often falls to the Saratoga Springs property manager. The reason for this is that these are parts of the property that see a lot of wear and tear over time. In some instances, though, tenants may be responsible for damage to carpeting or flooring. In this instance, the tenant would need to pay for the repairs.

Batteries in smoke and CO detectors. Smoke and CO detectors are foremost for keeping a rental property safe. The batteries in these devices should certainly be regularly tested and replaced as desired. In rare instances, state law identifies whether it is the landlord’s or the tenant’s responsibility to replace the batteries. It doesn’t matter with whom the responsibility lies, as a landlord, you should make sure to check and replace batteries two times per year.

Air filters. Air filters help keep the air in a rental property clean and free of pollutants. Most of the time, it’s the tenant’s responsibility to replace the air filters. But some properties have air filter systems that tenants cannot straight away access and change themselves. If that is the case in your rental property, it is your responsibility to safeguard that your air filters are changed quite often.

When assigning maintenance tasks to your tenants, it’s necessary to incorporate clear language expounding all responsibilities in your lease. This will help to steer away from any conflict or disagreements down the road. By learning who is responsible for what with regards to rental property maintenance, you can keep your property in fine condition and dodge any potential legal problems.


Rental property maintenance can be a tough time-consuming process, particularly if you have to always be checking whether your tenant is fulfilling their responsibilities. But Real Property Management Utah County can help. We are experts in single-family rental property management, and we can professionally take care of all maintenance for you. Contact us online to learn more relating to our quality services.

We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.

The Neighborly Done Right Promise

The Neighborly Done Right Promise ® delivered by Real Property Management, a proud Neighborly company

When it comes to finding the right property manager for your investment property, you want to know that they stand behind their work and get the job done right – the first time. At Real Property Management we have the expertise, technology, and systems to manage your property the right way. We work hard to optimize your return on investment while preserving your asset and giving you peace of mind. Our highly trained and skilled team works hard so you can be sure your property's management will be Done Right.

Canada excluded. Services performed by independently owned and operated franchises.

See Full Details