Common rental disputes and how to resolve them

If you’re either a tenant or landlord, and you’re having trouble with the rental home or relationship with one another, it can feel stressful and daunting. Often though, it’s just a case of misunderstanding and, at Kaytons, we’ve put together a few tips to help you to resolve common rental disputes. 

Repairs, maintenance and damp

At Kaytons, one of the biggest disputes we see between landlords and tenants is regarding repairs and maintenance. Usually, landlords are responsible for dealing with any repairs and maintenance unless they have a property management company that deals with these situations. Either way, a landlord has the responsibility to keep the property in a liveable condition and this includes being quick to handle any issues. 

It’s important to remember that if a tenant has caused any damage, then they are responsible for that. But if a tenant identifies an issue that isn’t their fault, they must request for it to be fixed in writing. Typically, the inventory will be referred to to determine the state of the property at the beginning of the tenancy. Just be mindful about the severity of the issue. Of course, if the boiler is broken then tenants should get in touch. But, if a light bulb needs replacing, a landlord may appreciate you just doing this yourself. 

Another area of concern related to repairs and maintenance is the issue of dampness. This can lead to disputes because it’s not always obvious where the damp has come from and therefore who is responsible for it. Condensation damp, for example, is usually caused by drying clothes inside and not airing the property so tenants are responsible for this. Rising and penetrating damp is usually the responsibility of landlords as they are accountable for the exterior and structure of the property. 

If a tenant does find any damp, they must evidence that it is not caused by their doing. It is important to speak to either the landlord or letting agent about the situation. In the worst case scenario, tenants can even contact the local council’s environmental health department who will be able to help the landlord to deal with it. 


A landlord will likely confirm whether any pets are allowed in the property in the tenancy agreement. While landlords aren’t allowed to put a blanket ban on all pets, they can say no if they don’t think a pet is suitable for their property. For example, if you have a large dog in a small flat or multiple pets. Either way, this will be confirmed in the tenancy agreement.

If a landlord discovers that a tenant has been keeping a pet in the property, without their approval, technically the tenant has breached their contract. In this case, a tenant could even be asked to leave. For this reason, it’s super important that a tenant asks for their landlord’s approval before getting an animal or even looking after a loved one’s animal. If a landlord does agree, this will need to be written in the tenancy agreement. 

Rental payments and deposits

In the event that a tenant is struggling to pay their rent, or may be late with a payment, it’s advised that they contact the landlord or letting agent. After all, if you’re honest and give a pre-warning, there are likely to be more options available. If a tenant doesn’t say anything, and misses a payment, they’re in breach of their contract and could face applicable fees and even legal action if payments are continuously missed. 

Another financial concern with tenants and landlords is regarding the deposit. A tenant’s deposit can only be held if they have missed rental payments, damaged the property or damaged items. A deposit cannot be held for general wear and tear. On the day of the tenancy agreement ending, tenants should take photos of the property to record the condition of it. If the landlord has a property management team in place, this team will also conduct an inspection. 

If a landlord believes the deposit should not be returned in full, they must outline why as well as how they came to the figured amount. A tenant can then get their own quotes for fixing any of the damage and they can try to come to a resolution. In the event that a tenant and landlord can’t agree, the deposit protection scheme can help. 

Choose Kaytons for your rental homes

At Kaytons, we’ve been helping landlords and tenants for the past 15 years. When you let or rent through us, you’ll have access to our support and guidance throughout the whole process. As well as this, we also offer property management services so that landlords don’t need to worry about a thing and can instead reap the benefits of property investment. If you have any questions about this service or our rental properties, pop into our Chapel street office or pick up the phone today. 

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