Silent on the point: what are the landlord’s repairing obligations?

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The Court of Appeal has held that a landlord is not responsible for repairs to the retained parts of a property where the lease does not contain an express repairing covenant relating to those parts. The lease in this case set out comprehensive provisions for dealing with repairs to the retained parts in the insurance provisions. There was no need to imply any further repairing obligations on the landlord, and indeed to do so would unfairly improve the agreement made by the tenant when it took on the lease.

The tenant had a lease of commercial premises, which it used as a gallery. The upper floors were retained by the landlord. Although the tenant had repairing covenants in respect of its demise, the lease did not contain an equivalent covenant for the landlord to repair the retained parts. However, the landlord was to insure the demised premises and the retained parts, and had to apply any insurance proceeds to repairing the premises where they had been damaged by an insured risk.

The demised premises were often damaged by water and soil pipe leaks, and were repaired via insurance proceeds…

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