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General Landlording & Rental Properties

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Gytenis B.
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Broomfield, CO
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Garbage disposable - who should pay for the repair?

Gytenis B.
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Broomfield, CO
Posted Dec 20 2017, 20:55

Hello Friends and Colleagues,

I have a question from a renter's side at the moment. Who should be paying for the leaking garbage disposal repair? If the lease states that landlord is responsible for the repairs unless of misuse, waste, or neglect of the tenant. 

My landlord is stating that it was not normal wear and tear and that's why I should be charged for it. I do not agree with that as the garbage disposal was not used for anything else but small bits of food and never in large quantities. 

What would be the best way to approach this? 

Action is happening in Wisconsin. 

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Franklin Romine
  • Visalia-Fresno, CA
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Franklin Romine
  • Visalia-Fresno, CA
Replied Dec 20 2017, 21:07

Im a landlord and I would pay for it. I believe in taking care of your tenants.

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Jill F.
  • Investor
  • Akron, OH
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Jill F.
  • Investor
  • Akron, OH
Replied Dec 20 2017, 21:31

First, are you sure it's not just frozen? Sometimes you can free it up with a lever. I would send my handyman over to check on it. Unless I had some reason to expect abuse (such as multiple problems with the same appliance) I would fix it even though my lease does not warranty disposals.

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Marian Smith
  • Real Estate Investor
  • Williamson County, TX
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Marian Smith
  • Real Estate Investor
  • Williamson County, TX
Replied Dec 21 2017, 01:09

A leaking garbage disposal has reached the end of its lifespan...unless it was not installed correctly. They are all metal and wear out over time. A spoon or piece of glass, etc will sometimes fall in the sink and lock the disposal blades and an allen wrench will turn the blades backwards to dislodge the debris, and that is the tenants responsibility. A leaking worn out disposal will have to be replaced and is the landlords responsibility.

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Sam Leon
  • Investor
  • Fort Lauderdale, FL
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Sam Leon
  • Investor
  • Fort Lauderdale, FL
Replied Dec 21 2017, 05:12

"Leaking"?  As in there is a drip inside the sink cabinet coming from the disposer?

I can only think of two cases.

If it's leaking because of a bad connection between the disposer tailpiece, or the dishwasher discharge hose and the disposer tie in, it's a matter of tightening up properly.  Are you talking about a leak and the actual water leaked over time unnoticed and now it's rotting out the sink cabinet base?  My experience is tenants tend to put everything under the sink, so much stuff and they still keep pushing and shoving stuff inside and sometimes they end up pushing things loose.  Every month I go into a rental for "scheduled maintenance" to change AC filters, bleach out AC condensate lines, flush water heater T&P valves etc...one thing I do is to exercise open/close of all stop valves.  I often have to move tons of stuff outside of the sink cabinet to even get to reach the valves.  So much stuff a slow leak would go unnoticed by a tenant.

If it's leaking due to the metal housing being corroded there is no repair needed.  A new one is what $89, $99, $109, $150 depends on the model and it's 2 minutes to swap out.  It's not even enough money to have a conversation over as a landlord I would replace it.

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Steve Vaughan#1 Personal Finance Contributor
  • Rental Property Investor
  • East Wenatchee, WA
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Steve Vaughan#1 Personal Finance Contributor
  • Rental Property Investor
  • East Wenatchee, WA
Replied Dec 21 2017, 06:38

Your landlord is a wuss.

I would’ve had this cleared, tightened or replaced by the time it took you to post your question.

Instead you are having indigestion and worrying over a nothing. Your LL needs to fix this themself or stroke a large check because they are working ‘on’ their business. Give me a break,