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25% of PRS tenants have waited a week for repairs

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25% of PRS tenants have waited a week for repairs

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Published by Max Salsbury for 24dash.com in Housing and also in Communities

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Nearly a quarter of people living in the private rented sector have been left waiting at least a week for broken down central heating, blocked drains or leaking pipes to be fixed, new research has revealed.

And the slow response to repairs has seen a quarter of a million tenants withholding rents as a result.

The data comes as a North East landlord was landed with a £1,000 bill for leaving his tenants without heating during the winter.

Vivender Nath Blaggan of Stockton pleaded guilty last week to failing to comply with an abatement notice for letting a rental property with a faulty boiler for three months.

Repair firm Homeserve's research found that one in three tenants has faced a home emergency in the past year, with the most common complaints central heating faults (15%), broken boilers (14%), blocked sinks (13%), blocked drains (10%) and leaking taps (7%).

Ajay Jagota, chief executive of KIS Lettings, which manages properties for 700 landlords across the North East, said: “It might sound like an odd time of year to be talking about central heating, but it’s important landlords take the opportunity to fix the roof while the sun is shining, perhaps even literally, to avoid being seriously out of pocket down the line.

“Tenants have a moral and often legal right to expect repairs to their homes to be carried out immediately, but even the most responsible and responsive landlords can struggle to meet those expectations, especially when they manage their own properties.

“Having their tenants hold off paying their rent is a situation no-one wants under any circumstances, and having them look elsewhere for somewhere to live leaving their landlord out of pocket is even less desirable.”

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