December 8, 2023

Is tenant responsible for air conditioning maintenance

Is the Tenant Responsible for Air Conditioning Maintenance?

Queensland is well known for its intense summers. Given that, you could be forgiven for thinking that air conditioning is a basic requirement in rental properties.

While many landlords are nice enough to provide air conditioning, it’s not a legal requirement. One of the reasons for this is because air conditioners require ongoing maintenance. A poorly maintained air conditioner can be expensive to run and repair, which makes them less appealing to landlords.

The other tricky part of air conditioning is figuring out who’s responsible for which expenses. Air conditioners need maintenance, and they may need repairs as they age, and someone has to foot the bill for that work.

If you’re lucky enough to have air conditioning in your rental, it may come with a few extra responsibilities. In this article we’ll see whether the tenant is responsible for air conditioning maintenance, and what your responsibilities are as a landlord.

Is the Tenant Responsible for Air Conditioning Maintenance?

Tenants are usually responsible for air conditioning maintenance in Brisbane. In some cases, the landlord may take responsibility for maintaining air conditioning, but this depends on the terms of your lease agreement.

If you are a tenant, maintaining split system air conditioners is simple. Every 3-6 months you should:

  • Open the front panel of the internal wall unit
  • Remove the filter and use the garden hose to rinse it clean
  • Allow the filter to dry in a shady spot before putting it back in the air conditioner
  • Wipe the inside of the air conditioner to remove any built up dust

While tenants are responsible for ongoing maintenance, the landlord is responsible for keeping air conditioners in a good state of repair. This typically means the landlord will pay to have the air conditioner serviced every 12 months by a professional. You should also contact your landlord if the system is damaged or doesn’t work properly.

Note that failing to maintain an air conditioner can damage the unit. As the tenant, you may be liable to repair or replace a faulty air conditioner if you neglect its maintenance.

Does a Landlord Have to Provide Air Conditioning in a Property?

No, landlords are not required to provide air conditioning in residential properties in Brisbane.

Despite this, many owners choose to install air conditioning in tenanted homes. This is because supplying air conditioning can increase the value of the property from anywhere between $10 and $50 per week. That averages out to an extra $1,560 per year – so air conditioning can easily pay for itself.

You don’t need to go all out and install ducted air conditioning throughout the home. Many tenants will be satisfied to have split system air conditioning in the master bedroom and main living areas. This will keep the whole family cool during the worst of summer, and it’s an affordable solution for landlords.

If a Tenant Requests that Air Conditioning is Installed, Who Pays for It?

The landlord is responsible for the cost of installing air conditioning.

As the landlord, you can choose to install air conditioning at a tenant’s request. You can also refuse the request, since there’s no legal requirement to provide air conditioning.

Does that mean you can increase the rent if you choose to install an air conditioner? In most cases, no.

Keep in mind that your lease agreement is binding. While you can ask an existing tenant to pay more rent in exchange for a new air conditioner, the tenant isn’t required to agree.

Many landlords choose to install air conditioning in the gap between one tenant and the next. This allows you to increase the rent and offset the cost of the installation. That way, you’re providing more value to the next tenant, but you don’t need to worry about getting a return on your investment.

Andrew Martel standing next to his work vehicle

Book Air Conditioning Maintenance and Installation with Martel Electrical!

Brisbane’s harsh summers mean that air conditioning is almost a requirement. While it’s not mandated by the RTA, installing air conditioning in your properties is a great way to keep tenants happy and comfortable. Once you’ve sorted out who’s responsible for maintenance and repairs, you can contact Martel Electrical for a quote!

Martel Electrical is an experienced electrician that works all over North Brisbane. We specialise in split system air conditioning installation, maintenance and repairs. Our team offers a comprehensive range of air conditioning services, so we can keep your systems in perfect condition.

A well-maintained air conditioner will be more efficient, cheaper to run and last for decades. That’s good news for tenants and landlords alike!

You can book an air conditioning maintenance appointment online, or contact us for a quote on installation and repairs.