All retail leases in New South Wales are governed by the Retail Leases Act 1994, with the act ensuring the rights of the Lessor (Landlords) and the Lessee (Tenants) are maintained.
We regularly hear from clients who complain about a leak in the premises, or a Landlord who won’t fix damage to property, and the question is always who is responsible for this?
The answer is to always revert back to your lease document. The lease between the parties will almost always outline who is responsible for the care and maintenance of the premises. The lease will include the responsibilities of all parties.
In most retail leases, the Lessee (Tenant) is responsible for maintaining and caring for the leasehold and ensuring that it is kept in good repair and order. There are provisions in most retail leases that state that all property outside of the leasehold that is damaged by the lessee due to negligent, willful, or deliberate acts will be the Lessee’s responsibility to rectify.
We recently had a client write to us and say their landlord was not fixing a leaking roof, the Sydney rain had caused a great amount of damage to the inside walls. They made numerous requests to the Lessor who shrugged them off.
Our advice to them was, after reading the lease, the Lessor was responsible for the care and maintenance of the common building and land, that their failure to rectify the leak breached their lease, and that with this breach, our client could claim a reduction in rent due to the premises becoming impaired.
With a letter to the Lessor, the roof was rectified within the week.
Residential leases in New South Wales are covered by the Tenancies Act 2010 and the Residential Tenancies Regulation 2019.
These allow all tenants in leaseholds to enjoy a safe and comfortable environment whilst the landlord can remain assured that their homes are safe and being looked after.
In nearly all residential tenancy agreements, it is the Lessor or most commonly known as the Landlord who is responsible to maintain and keep the property in order. Landlords are to bare the cost of repairs and ensure that the place is liveable.
If the tenant acts willfully, negligently, or without care, any damage to the property is then the responsibility of the tenant to repair and make good the damage, bringing the property back to its former condition.
RN LEGAL has assisted many clients with Lease concerns. RN LEGAL has the experience, expertise, and resources to help you with such matters. Contact RN LEGAL on (02) 9191 9293 or [email protected] if you, or someone you know, requires advice or assistance in relation to any aspect of leases.