Landlord – Tenant Responsibilities : INDIA

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Landlord – Tenant Responsibilities : INDIA

Over the past 25 years, the Indian housing market has created an enriched experience for Expats living in the country on short term/ long term assignments. While the quality of housing available has improved and increased, the overall experience still remains challenging for an Expatriate, especially when it comes to managing their tenancies and working with their Landlords and a large impact on the Experience is due to lack of basic understanding on the responsibilities of the Tenant and the Landlord as well as local practices.

Property Ownership & the Impact

It is important as an Expatriate to understand that a majority of the rental housing available is individually owned and hence each experience is different because one ends up dealing with personalities.

Impact – As majority of the properties are individually owned, the tenant will not have a professional point of contact for addressing tenancy issues or being heard and redressal of concerns

Tenant Vs Owner Responsibilities and actions

IKAN Relocation, has through it’s years of experience in handling or managing tenancies, has put together some basic guidelines, which if followed would result in better results in terms of tenant satisfaction.

 

As a TenantPossible Owner actions
Always inform the owner + his agent + his representative via email of any tenancy issue being experiencedThis assures a documented record of the issue and frequent communications / follow up’s may be required.

 

The owner may not always respond/ react as expected.
Minor Issues – Usually, and subject to terms of the the  agreement, all Minor Issues and Repairs are at the  cost of the Tenant. (Details may be further  specified in the signed agreement)

 

 

The owner usually is not responsible for Minor issues as detailed in the Lease agreement.
Major Issues – Based on the terms in the signed agreement, all Major Issues and Repairs are usually  at the  cost of the Owner

 

Always inform the owner + his agent + his representative via email of any Major issue

 

The Owner may depute workers to  visit, evaluate, plan & execute the repair/ replacement and also  make payments for the job directly to the contractor.

 

Sometimes, the owner may advise the Tenant to get the repair/ replacement done at their cost and and deduct from the rent.

 

Many a times, the Lease also permits the tenant to execute the repairs and adjust the same from the rent after seeking approvals from the Landlord.

In case of under Warranty Appliances/ Fittings not working properly – Always inform the owner + his agent + his representative via email of any issue and seek the resolution of the same.

 

As a tenant one may need to contact the Manufacturer’s customer support for the warranty & set up for the visit of the technician for the repairs

 

The tenant will need to be present to supervise the repair/ replacement and confirm the satisafctory completion of the works.

 

The owner may not always respond/ react. In some cases the owner’s may be requested to assist with ensuring the Manufacturer or the Warranty provider is contacted by the owner for additional support on their response time.

 

Usually the owner will share copies of the warranty card and expect the tenant to follow through with the company for securing repairs.

Under AMC (annual maintenance contract) Appliances/ Fittings – The tenant has to  engage directly with the AMC provider to have them visit and go through the AMC process of checking and repairing the appliances/ fittings.

 

The tenant will need to be present to supervise the repair/ replacement and confirm the satisafctory completion of the works.

 

The owner may not always respond/ react.

 

In cases where the AMC providers have been contracted by the Owner, the Owner may be requested to contact them in case there is no response from the AMC Company.

Ongoing Maintenance & Usage of Appliances/ Plumbing Fittings/ Electrical Fittings/ Wooden Fittings – the Tenant is  responsible for ensuring that all appliances/ plumbing fittings (including toilet flushing etc.)/ Electrical Fittings e.g. Sokets etc. / Wooden Fittings e.g. sliding doors, handles etc. are working and in good condition  at the time of the closure of the Lease

 

If there is anything that is not working properly, break down; the Tenant will need to have these repaired immediately. The tenant will need to be present to supervise the repair/ replacement.

 

The Tenant has the responsibility to return the property and the various fixtures and fittings in the property to the landlord in the same condition as were received, normal wear and tear exempt

 

The owner usually seeks compensation for any minor or major damage (not reported / not documented) at the property and has the right to deduct the cost from the deposit.
Structural Issues – Based on the terms in the agreement, all Structural Issues and Repairs are at the  cost of the Owner and are considered major repairs.

 

Always inform the owner + his agent + his representative via email of any Structural issue and seek the resolution of the same.

 

The tenant will need to be present to supervise the repair/ replacement and confirm the satisafctory completion of the works.

 

The Owner may depute someone to visit, evaluate, plan & execute the repair/ replacement and make payments for the same.

 

Sometimes, the owner may advise the Tenant to get the repair/ replacement done while he will make the payment for the same directly to the vendor; while in some other cases the Owner may request the tenant to make the payment and reimburse the same to the tenant.

 

As a tenant, it is extremely important for the Lease to be written well, be water tight and all responsibilities of the landlord and potential liabilities as well as protection of security deposit well covered, specially where the lease has not been registered or is a personal lease in nature.Many landlords insist on their draft of the Lease to be accepted  and signed by the Tenant.

 

The Lease negotiations in India can take much longer than most other countries, but it is recommended that most focus be given to this aspect of the tenancy so as to reduce future challenges and confusion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Harveer Singh Chadha
harveer.singh@ikan.com

Harveer has had the experience of working in diverse functions in the IT Industry ranging from social community websites, software development, E-commerce (B2C nd B2B) and Staff Augmentation & IT Sales for the US market. Harveer joined IKAN in 2006 and has prevousely worked in the Relocation Industry with DSP’s including the previous avatar of IKAN.

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