Virginia Landlord and Tenant Duties

55-248.13. Landlord to maintain fit premises

A. The landlord shall:

1.  Comply with the requirements of applicable building and housing codes materially affecting health and safety;

2.  Make all repairs and do whatever is necessary to put and keep the premises in a fit and habitable condition;

3.  Keep all common areas shared by two or more dwelling units of the premises in a clean and structurally safe condition;

4.  Maintain in good and safe working order and condition all electrical, plumbing, sanitary, heating, ventilating, air-conditioning and other facilities and appliances, including elevators, supplied or required to be supplied by him;

5.  Maintain the premises in such a condition as to prevent the accumulation of moisture and the growth of mold, and to promptly respond to any notices from a tenant as provided in subdivision A 10 of § 55-248.16;

6.  Provide and maintain appropriate receptacles and conveniences, in common areas, for the collection, storage, and removal of ashes, garbage, rubbish and other waste incidental to the occupancy of two or more dwelling units and arrange for the removal of same; and

7.  Supply running water and reasonable amounts of hot water at all times and reasonable air conditioning if provided and heat in season except where the dwelling unit is so constructed that heat, air conditioning or hot water is generated by an installation within the exclusive control of the tenant or supplied by a direct public utility connection.

B. The landlord shall perform the duties imposed by subsection A in accordance with law; however, the landlord shall only be liable for the tenant's actual damages proximately caused by the landlord's failure to exercise ordinary care.

C. If the duty imposed by subdivision 1 of subsection A is greater than any duty imposed by any other subdivision of that subsection, the landlord's duty shall be determined by reference to subdivision 1 of subsection A.

D. The landlord and tenant may agree in writing that the tenant perform the landlord's duties specified in subdivisions 3, 6, and 7 of subsection A and also specified repairs, maintenance tasks, alterations and remodeling, but only if the transaction is entered into in good faith and not for the purpose of evading the obligations of the landlord, and if the agreement does not diminish or affect the obligation of the landlord to other tenants in the premises.

Tenant Obligations

§ 55-248.16. Tenant to maintain dwelling unit

A. In addition to the provisions of the rental agreement, the tenant shall:

1.  Comply with all obligations primarily imposed upon tenants by applicable provisions of building and housing codes materially affecting health and safety;

2.  Keep that part of the premises that he occupies and uses as clean and safe as the condition of the premises permit;

3.  Remove from his dwelling unit all ashes, garbage, rubbish and other waste in a clean and safe manner and in the appropriate receptacles provided by the landlord pursuant to § 55-248.13, if such disposal is on the premises;

4.  Keep all plumbing fixtures in the dwelling unit or used by the tenant as clean as their condition permits;

5.  Use in a reasonable manner all utilities and all electrical, plumbing, sanitary, heating, ventilating, air-conditioning and other facilities and appliances including elevators in the premises, and keep all utility services paid for by the tenant to the utility service provider or its agent on at all times during the term of the rental agreement;

6.  Not deliberately or negligently destroy, deface, damage, impair or remove any part of the premises or permit any person to do so whether known by the tenant or not;

7.  Not remove or tamper with a properly functioning smoke detector installed by the landlord, including removing any working batteries, so as to render the detector inoperative;

8.  Not remove or tamper with a properly functioning carbon monoxide detector installed by the landlord, including removing any working batteries, so as to render the carbon monoxide detector inoperative;

9.  Use reasonable efforts to maintain the dwelling unit and any other part of the premises that he occupies in such a condition as to prevent accumulation of moisture and the growth of mold, and to promptly notify the landlord of any moisture accumulation that occurs or of any visible evidence of mold discovered by the tenant;

10. Be responsible for his conduct and the conduct of other persons on the premises with his consent whether known by the tenant or not, to ensure that his neighbors' peaceful enjoyment of the premises will not be disturbed; and

11. Abide by all reasonable rules and regulations imposed by the landlord pursuant to § 55-248.17.

B. If the duty imposed by subdivision 1 of subsection A is greater than any duty imposed by any other subdivision of that subsection, the tenant's duty shall be determined by reference to subdivision 1.

Return to Healthy Homes