In today’s Vancouver housing market where prices are high, it makes sense for some families to rent rather than buy a home. Most of the time, it’s safe to assume that the cost of the upkeep and maintenance of a rental property falls on the shoulders of the landlord. However, the British Columbia Tenancy Act assigns shared responsibility to the tenant and the landlord for maintaining the house and the land surrounding it.
It is the duty of the landlord to provide a residence that will meet all required health and safety regulations and that all aspects of the property are kept well-maintained and in good repair. All services and facilities should be listed in detail in the tenancy agreement signed by both parties before the tenant moves in.
A tenant is responsible for the general condition and appearance of the house and property. Tenants are accountable for the day-to-day tasks required to keep the home safe, clean and livable. They are also responsible for any damage incurred by family members living in the home, family pets, or someone visiting.
So Who Clean the Gutters?
Before tenants move in the tenant and the landlord should inspect the house and grounds together. The landlord will write a tenancy agreement that includes the standard tenancy terms, as well as any additional terms and conditions, including specific clauses for who is responsible for what.
While gutters are certainly part of the roof and therefore are part of the structure’s drainage system, some landlords consider cleaning the gutters is the renter’s responsibility, in the same category as changing the light bulbs or sweeping the sidewalk. If gutter cleaning is not specifically outlined in the agreement, the tenant can ask for clarification on the issue and come to some arrangement that would be acceptable to both the landlord and the tenant.