Who’s Responsible for Plumbing Issues: Tenant or Property Management Company?

Who Pays for Plumbing Issues in a Rental Property?

Now that is a really good question. Who is going to take care of getting the plumbing fixed and pay the kind plumber? Well, that depends. At Bravo Property Management and Realty, we want there to be no question about what you, the tenant, are responsible for and what the property manager will deal with. SO, we have come up with the following guide just to let you know who is responsible for plumbing issues.

The Importance of Your Plumbing

No one likes to talk about it, but plumbing issues happen. Pipes break, need tightening, valves need tweaking, clogs need fixing, etc. In fact, with so many parts in your house that fall under the umbrella of plumbing, it is a wonder we don’t have even more plumbing breakdowns.

Just think about it, plumbing is in our morning shower, flushing the toilet, washing our hands, making dinner, doing dishes, garbage disposal, washing clothes, watering the lawn, and countless other places. We sure do use our plumbing system a lot. And when something breaks down, we tend to panic a bit. That is entirely understandable considering the part plumbing plays in our day to day life.

Try Not to Panic When You Have A Plumbing Issue.

We know. It is hard, and often, it is gross. Your property manager knows that and exactly how critical it is to get someone right out. In most rental situations, the landlord is responsible for ensuring the home is livable, including the AC, plumbing, electricity, and structure of the building is up to par. So, in most cases, the property manager will call a trusted plumbing company to your home to fix the issue as soon as possible. Follow these simple guidelines when you encounter a plumbing problem.

  1. First, call the property management company to let them know you need a plumber to come out and how urgent the problem is.
  2. Consult your lease agreement to ensure the level of responsibility the lease affords you and the landlord.
  3. Place your request in writing and keep copies.
  4. Take pictures of the issue for your record of the problem.
  5. Once the plumber has repaired the plumbing, take “after” photos.

The bill should go directly to the property manager. However, if they require payment on the spot, let the property manager know. If they approve it, pay the plumber and submit your receipt for reimbursement. The most important aspect of this process is communication. Be sure to keep the property manager in the loop, or if they are handling the work, as that they keep you in the loop.

Plumbing Issues

Plumbing Emergency Calls

What is a plumbing emergency? These are the issues the tenant will want to get fixed immediately, requiring a phone call to the landlord. Often, a good property manager will let you call out the plumber they use and get it fixed right away. They don’t want damage to the property any more than you do.

Here are some of those times we would consider an emergency.

  • Toilet Overflow
  • Sink or tub overflow
  • Burst pipes
  • A broken water heater
  • Serious pipe leaks
  • A stop in running water in the house

It would be best if you did not wait to contact the property management company. In these situations, call the management right away and get the plumber right out.

Tenant Responsibility

Unfortunately, it happens. When a tenant has an accidental break or a negligent break, it may fall on the tenant’s responsibility rather than the management. Below are a couple of examples of negligence:

  • Repeated issues with clogging the toilet due to flushing items other than human waste and toilet tissue.
  • A tenant stacks the Holiday Décor boxes on the top of the water heater, and one day they come crashing down, bursting the pipes on the heater.
  • Pipes freezing due to improper temperature settings.
  • Garbage disposal is broken continuously due to improper usage.

These are all problems plumbers see every day. Those would be best to be handled by the occupant. There again, please be sure to consult the language of your lease agreement before making any decisions. And don’t forget to document any work you have done.

Plumbing Issues

Taking Care of Plumbing Issues

In conclusion, most plumbing issues can be resolved with a plunger, a wrench to tighten, or a drain-clearing tool. If you can take care of those minor issues, you will be one of those tenants the property management companies are happy to rent to. The property manager should appropriately handle a larger problem. In any case, it is essential to consult the lease agreement as well as the management.

Bravo Property Management Company and Realty want to make the process as easy as possible. If you have a plumbing problem, call us right away to get it handled. And trust the repair to your friendly local plumber.