Published: May 2022

Keep warm in winter

What to do if your heater breaks down

Now we are in the colder months it is a good time to check if your heater is working properly.

If your heater becomes faulty, or ceases to work, you don’t have to rug up and bear it.

Rental providers (landlords) must ensure a fixed heater is installed in rented homes in Victoria. Anything they provide in your home must be maintained and repaired if necessary.

So, repairing and maintaining the heater in your house is the rental provider’s duty, not yours.

A failure or breakdown of heating is an urgent repair under Victoria’s rental laws.

Urgent repairs need to be done as soon as possible.

The first step is to call the rental provider or real estate agent as soon you notice the problem to report the repairs needed. Then, even if it sounds like the problem will be fixed with just a call, confirm the repairs that are needed in writing. The law requires this, and it will also give you proof of when you reported the problem in case you need to take further action later.

If the rental provider or agent does not get the heater fixed urgently you can apply to the Victorian Civil and Administration Tribunal (VCAT). It will hear your application within 2 business days.

For more detailed information, including all the steps for arranging for urgent repairs, see our page Repairs and maintenance.

Also see our pages on these topics:

Note: This information is a guide and should not be used as a substitute for professional legal advice.

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