Brooklyn, NY asked in Landlord - Tenant for New York

Q: What appliances/ fixtures are residential landlords responsible for?

I am a home owner and would like to know what am I responsible to repair for my tenant if he breaks/damages it due to his negligence? I had to replace a good working ceiling fan because he kept ranking so hard. Now the oven door frame has to replaced on a new stove and all he is said was that he opened the oven door by the handle, a screw was loose and when he tightened it it broke. The kitchen counter has numerous scratches where the paint is chipped off. Is a tenant responsible for the upkeep and cleanliness of the apt? What items am I legally responsible to repair/replace if it has been broken due to wear and tear and not the mishandling of items? Stove, pipes, radiator and light fixtures? Am I responsible for a fridge? If my tenant continues to be negligent on how he is handling the appliances can I have him be responsible to repair if it’s in the lease?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Steven Warren Smollens
Steven Warren Smollens
  • Landlord Tenant Lawyer
  • New York, NY
  • Licensed in New York

A: Dear Brooklyn Home Owner:

Generally, in an ordinary apartment residential rental, the landlord is always responsible for making repairs to appliances and maintaining the rented apartment in the same condition as when the tenant took over occupancy. Your service contracts may cover the expense of repairs. If not, you cannot draw down from the tenant's security deposit for repairs occasioned by the tenant's intentional destruction.

There is an exception to the general rule. A landlord renting an entire single-family house to a tenant may use the lease as a means to shift the burden of repairs upon the tenant.

Daniel Michael Luisi agrees with this answer

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