Report any problems or repairs needed directly to your landlord or letting agent.

If a private landlord is responsible for the repairs, they should be carried out within a reasonable time. This is not defined in law and is dependent on the nature and circumstances of the repair.

If it is clear that a landlord is ignoring their responsibility to carry out a repair or has not done so satisfactorily, you should request a fitness inspection from the Environmental Health Department of your local council.

After a fitness inspection, the property may be refused a certificate of fitness and the amount of rent payable on that property may be controlled in an effort to compel your landlord to meet their responsibilities. Your local council should detail a schedule of works necessary to make the property fit as well as a time scale in which work must be done.

A landlord is obliged to carry out the works within a reasonable time. Failing this, the council may do the work itself and take the landlord to court for compensation.

Some people in the private rental sector may be able to access help with repairs and adaptations through grant schemes.