I’ve worked in three different property management offices, and found that the number one issue property managers complain about is landlords not doing general, and much needed, maintenance. One recent example was an owner not wanting to water-blast a deck, which was a health and safety issue. The owner wanted the tenant to do it.
The case above is an example of an owner trying to save $100, at the risk of being fined $4000 for breaching his landlord obligations. The key to this is communication. Most landlords don’t understand they have such obligations, and what the implications of breaching them are.
A lot of property managers will become fed-up with this type of owner behavior, and arrange the maintenance without the owners approval, as they have a tenant at their necks about it, and the owners contract will allow a small budget to be spent at the property managers discretion. This is where the relationship can deteriorate between all involved.
This is actually a simple issue to resolve. Firstly, is to make it clear to the owner that they have landlord obligations, and refusing to do the work is an unlawful act. This is why they pay for professional property management. Then once that is communicated, get the work done. In that order.