What to do about problems with your rented property?
What is the situation in Dubai in terms of maintenance? Who is responsible? The tenant or the landlord?
As per Article 16 or Law 26 of 2007, the landlord is responsible for undertaking all maintenance in the property unless otherwise agreed. That being said, most tenancy agreements in Dubai normally put minor maintenance as the responsibility of the tenant and any major maintenance as the responsibility of the landlord. Even this is subject to interpretation as to what is minor or major maintenance. In practice, normally anything to do with the equipment including AC, water heaters, water pumps etc, is considered major, falling under landlord responsibility and anything minor such as leaking faucets, blocked drains, light bulbs are considered the tenant’s responsibility.
What is the Betterhomes property management policy on this? Ie, should there be an agreed financial limit at which the landlord has to take over responsibility for repairs?
Betterhomes management tenancy agreement states that the landlord is responsible for major maintenance and the tenant for minor maintenance. Basing the responsibility on the cost is very tricky, as some tenants may deliberately obtain expensive quotes so that the landlord has to take responsibility.
What about tenant negligence? Can you give an example of tenant negligence that would mean they would be responsible for expensive repairs themselves?
Any intentional or unintentional damage caused to the property or equipment that’s not a result of normal wear and tear becomes the responsibility of the tenant. An example would be a shattered window due to deliberate impact, a leak that was not reported which in turn caused damage to cabinets.
Would you advise people to look for properties managed by Betterhomes in order to guarantee that they will receive good service in terms of property maintenance? Ditto landlords, would you advise them to go with property management so they know maintenance issues will be resolved swiftly?
From both tenants and a landlord’s perspective, dealing with a management company ensures fair and unbiased representation for both parties. As property managers, we ensure both parties’ interests are protected and all prevailing rental laws and regulations are adhered to.
Do you have any advice for tenants or landlords on what they should do if they have a big maintenance issue which they cannot resolve?
Any disputes between the tenant and landlord that cannot be resolved amicably can be taken to the rental committee. They will review it and make a decision.
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