When refurbishing a dwelling it can be a very tricky and problematic situation for both the tenant and the landlord. A landlord may request a tenant to vacate the dwelling if any repairs, conversions or refurbishments are necessary and cannot be done properly while the tenant remains in occupation. A landlord may also cancel the lease if need be in order to carry out the refurbishments, however this wouldn’t be advisable because landlord would then need to re-advertise the property and start the tenant application process again.
However if the tenant does not mind the refurbishments being carried out, the landlord must allow the tenant remission of rental for the period during which the tenant is not in occupation. This simply means; if the tenant is happy to have the improvements done the Landlord must pay for the tenant’s alternative accommodation or reimburse the tenant his rental for the period of the refurbishments.
The refurbishments must be carried out within a reasonable time period as to cause the tenant as little inconvenience as possible and to also ensure that the tenant is able to return to the dwelling as soon as possible after the completion of the refurbishments or repairs. This forms part of the tenants’ rights under the Rental Housing Act 1999 of Act 50 states. “Take reasonable steps to ensure that the tenant enjoys undisturbed use of the dwelling and in a multi-tenant building and that no tenant or other person conducts any activity within a dwelling which is expressly prohibited under the regulations, the Act or any other law, which shall include disturbance or the peace of the area.”
If a tenant does stay in the dwelling during the refurbishments and is unfortunately injured, the tenant cannot claim for damages. Although this might seem like a lot of rules and regulations which only cause strife for both parties involved, they are there to make sure that both the landlord and tenant are covered and if something did happen both could settle the situation amicably.