As a tenant, dealing with damages to a rental property is a much dreaded affair. In this post, the Parisian real estate specialists, Lodgis, explains what you should do to get the damages repaired and avoid any potential conflict with your landlord or insurer.
What to do?
If the damages have affected your personal belongings, it is your responsibility to report this to your own insurer.
If there are damages to the property itself, it is important that you contact the landlord/owner as soon as possible.
Which insurer is responsible?
For furnished rentals, it’s the insurer of the landlord (”Owner Non-Occupant” (PNO)) that is responsible for paying for the damages, except for damage caused to the tenant’s the personal belongings or where the damage is caused by the tenant.
For unfurnished rentals, the tenant’s insurer is usually responsible for dealing with a damages claim.
Maintenance and repairs vs. damages
You must be aware that the insurer is only responsible for the cost of fixing the damages as well as any damages caused whilst searching for the cause of damage (a leak, for example). The insurer is never responsible for the repairs.
The insurer is not responsible for the cost of maintenance or working repairs. Taking the example of a leak caused by a faulty tap, the insurer will pay for damages caused to the property, personal belongings, etc. But the insurer will not pay for the cost of replacing or repairing the tap.
Who is responsable for the cost of working repairs ?
Depending on the nature of the maintenance concerned, either the owner or the tenant (see list of rental repairs) working repairs.
Maintaining the joints of a tap is, for example, the tenant’s responsibility, and when a leak is caused by a faulty seal, it is his/her duty to pay for it to be fixed. Repairing broken pipes is, by contrast, the owner’s duty. It is only the insurer’s responsibility to provide compensation for the damages to the property, its furnishings or personal belongings of the tenant as a result of the faulty seal or broken pipe
The insurer will, however, pay for the replacement or repair of anything damaged as a result of looking for the cause ( e.g. broken wiring/, etc.).
If there are damages to your apartment for which you are not responsible, it is vital that you let your landlord know immediately, since this is a contractual obligation. If you do not report them, the landlord reserves the right to deduct the cost of these damages from your security deposit when you leave the property.