Landlord's Responsibilities

Under the Landlord-Tenant Act, the landlord must:

  • Maintain the dwelling so it does not violate state and local codes in ways that endanger the tenant's health and safety
  • Maintain the structure, including roofs, floors and chimneys, in reasonably good repair
  • Maintain the dwelling in reasonably weather-tight condition
  • Provide reasonably adequate locks and keys
  • Provide equipment necessary to supply heat, electricity and hot and cold water
  • Provide garbage cans and arrange for removal of garbage, except in single family dwellings
  • Keep common areas, such as lobbies, stairways and halls, reasonably clean and free from hazards
  • Control pests before the tenant moves in. The landlord must continue to control infestations except in single family dwellings, or when the infestation was caused by the tenant
  • Make repairs to keep the unit in the same condition as when the tenant moved in (except for normal wear and tear)
  • Keep electrical, plumbing and heating systems in good repair, and maintain any appliances that are provided with the rental
  • Provide the tenant with the name and address of the landlord or landlord's agent
  • Set water heaters at 120° when a new tenant moves in
  • Provide smoke detectors, and ensure they work properly when a new tenant moves in 
    • Tenants are responsible for maintaining detectors
  • Investigate whether a tenant is engaging in gang-related activity when another tenant notifies the landlord of gang-related activity by serving a written notice and investigation demand to the landlord (Revised Code of Washington 59.18.180)

Tenant Damage

A landlord is not responsible for the cost of correcting problems caused by the tenant.