Tenant vs. Landlord Responsibilities for HVAC Maintenance

If your rental property has an HVAC system, you may be wondering what your responsibilities are regarding this system, especially if you’re a new landlord.

Below, we discuss what tenants and landlords are responsible for when it comes to HVAC systems, and you should definitely go through these sections before properly cleaning your property and renting out your place.

What Tenants Are Responsible For

Air Filter Replacement

Air filters are a main component of HVAC systems, and without them HVAC systems wouldn’t be able to purify the air.

HVAC specialists recommend replacing these filters quarterly, but you may need to increase the frequency of filter replacement if you live in an area with exceptionally poor air quality.

Most rental agreements specify that filter replacement is to be handled by the tenant, meaning the tenant pays for and installs the replacement filter.

Before signing a lease, a prospective tenant should ask the landlord how air filter replacement is handled. If they don’t want to explain or show, this failure to accommodate a simple request should be seen as a big red flag.

Thermostat Battery Replacement

Many thermostats still run on batteries. When the batteries die, the thermostat does too, rendering the HVAC system inoperable. Changing the batteries is neither complicated nor expensive, which is largely why tenants are responsible for doing so.

Imagine if a unit’s thermostat goes out in the middle of the night. The landlord can’t be expected to help at this hour, especially when the tenant is fully capable of fixing the problem.

The landlord should show the tenant how battery replacement is done, and they should do this very early on in the tenancy.

What Landlords Are Responsible For

Routine HVAC Maintenance

In order for an HVAC system to last a long time and work well all the while, it must be properly maintained over the years.

HVAC maintenance should be handled by the landlord, and they should see to it that the system gets thoroughly examined at least twice a year.

They should bring in a professional team to look at the system, and the HVAC specialists should make sure the heating and air-conditioning functions are both working properly to avoid any damage to the property.

Conducting routine maintenance will allow the landlord to get out ahead of problems and address them before they become more severe.

After all, the last thing a tenant wants is their HVAC giving out when they really need it most; routine maintenance prevents such a scenario from happening.

HVAC Repairs

When an HVAC system stops working, the tenant shouldn’t be responsible for fixing it, unless of course they did something obvious to break the system.

The cost of repairs should fall on the landlord’s shoulders, and they should also be the one who sets up the repair service.

An HVAC system will break down a lot quicker if it isn’t maintained properly, underscoring why regular maintenance is imperative.

And if you’re a landlord who neglects to address HVAC issues in a timely manner, you could get sued by your tenant, especially if this obligation is expressly stated in the lease agreement.

Even if the landlord can’t make it to the property to assess the damage in person, they should still hire a team of HVAC experts to come out and see what the problem is. They should also allow these experts to do whatever is necessary to get the system up and running again.

How Sunrise Real Estate Corp Can Help You Manage Your Rental Property Better

Are you a landlord who’s sick of all the hassles that come with property management? Then it’s time to turn over all your property management tasks to Sunrise Real Estate Corp.

We have been providing top-notch property management services in Brooklyn, NY for several years, and with us on your team you can enjoy increased revenue as well as lasting peace of mind.

Call us at (718) 355-9117 or visit our site to learn more about what we do.

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