A rental relationship involves rights and obligations for both the landlord and the tenant. In the previous article, we looked at the rights and obligations of the tenant, and in this article, we will focus on analysing and describing the specific obligations and rights of the landlord in the lease. It is essential to understand these responsibilities to ensure a fair and balanced relationship between the parties involved.

 

1. Providing possession of the property

 

The first and most fundamental obligation of the lessor is to allow the lessee to occupy and enjoy the leased property in accordance with the terms and conditions set out in the lease. This implies handing over the property in a suitable condition for its use, free of defects that may affect its habitability and with the basic services in working order.

Article 1546 of the Civil Code states:

“The lessor is the one who is obliged to cede the use of the thing, carry out the work or provide the service, and the lessee is the one who acquires the use of the thing or the right to the work or service that he is obliged to pay for”.

The handover of possession of the property also extends to any accessory of the property that is included in the lease contract, such as the key to the letterbox, the swimming pool cards, the key to the lift.

It is important that at the moment of handing over possession, the condition of the property is recorded in writing, e.g. by stating in the tenancy agreement that the condition of the property is known and accepted.

 

2. Maintenance and repairs

 

The landlord is responsible for maintaining the property in good condition for the duration of the lease. This includes ensuring that the structure is in good condition, making necessary repairs and keeping basic utilities such as electricity, water and gas in working order. It must also address problems and deficiencies arising from normal wear and tear and regular use of the property.

 

a. The lessor must carry out repair and maintenance work without raising the rent:

 

– Repair work: This is carried out after damage has occurred to the dwelling.

– Conservation work: this involves applying the necessary measures to avoid the possible deterioration of the dwelling and is carried out when it is foreseen that this is going to occur.

 

b. The lessor does not have this obligation:

 

  1. when the damage is the responsibility of the lessee, either intentionally or through negligence, due, for example, to the proper use of the installations.
  2. The landlord is also not obliged to repair the dwelling if it is destroyed for reasons not attributable to the landlord, e.g. destruction of the dwelling due to a gas explosion. In this case, the rental contract will be terminated.

 

c. When do these maintenance and repair works have to be carried out?

 

In principle, the landlord must wait until the end of the tenancy to carry out the works to avoid disturbing the tenant’s peaceful use of the property, but if the works are urgent, they cannot wait and must be carried out during the duration of the contract and the tenant must pay for them.

If these works last more than 20 days, the tenant will have the right to a reduction of the rent proportional to the part of the property of which he/she is deprived of the use.

To carry out these repair works, the tenant must inform the landlord of the damage and must provide him with access to the property so that he can carry out the necessary repairs.

 

3. Respect for the tenant’s privacy

 

The landlord must respect the tenant’s privacy and may only enter the rented property in certain pre-arranged situations. These situations may include regular inspections of the condition of the property, carrying out repairs and dealing with urgent problems. The landlord must give reasonable notice before entering the property.

This includes the obligation to allow the tenant to use the property peacefully throughout the tenancy and to avoid any circumstance which may interfere with the tenant’s use of the property.

The landlord must avoid any disturbance, both de facto and de jure, such as any claim by a third party against the landlord, depriving the tenant of access to common or recreational areas, or the suppression of any service.

 

4. Collection of rent and guarantees

 

The landlord has the right to receive payment of the rent on the dates agreed in the rental contract. The landlord may also ask for a deposit to cover any damage to the property or any breach of the contract by the tenant. It is important to note, however, that there are legal rules and limits regarding these guarantees.

Article 36 of the Ley de Arrendamientos Urbanos states:

“After the contract, it is obligatory to request and pay a deposit in cash equal to one month’s rent in the case of the rental of dwellings, and two months’ rent in the case of the rental of premises other than dwellings.

“In addition to the cash deposit, the parties may agree on any form of guarantee for the tenant’s compliance with his obligations under the tenancy agreement.

In the case of the rental of dwellings, for contracts of up to five years, or up to seven years if the lessor is a legal person, the value of this additional guarantee may not exceed two monthly rent payments”.

 

5. Respect for the tenant’s rights

 

The landlord must respect the rights of the tenant as established by law. This includes providing a safe and healthy environment, not discriminating against the tenant, not imposing excessive or unlawful restrictions and allowing the tenant to exercise their legal rights. The landlord must also provide a clear and understandable tenancy agreement containing all relevant terms and conditions.

 

6. Conclusion

 

In the lease, the landlord has several duties and rights that must be fulfilled in order to maintain a fair and equitable relationship with the tenant. It is important that both parties know and understand these obligations and rights to avoid future problems and conflicts. Respecting and complying with these obligations will create a favourable environment for both parties, promoting trust and mutual respect.

With more than 20 years of experience in property leases, we at Quikprokuo can help you with any issue related to renting a property, please contact us here.