If the refrigerator breaks and the tenant’s food spoils is the landlord responsible for reimbursing the tenant for the cost of their spoiled food?
In most cases, the answer is no. Landlords are not insurers of their tenant’s property. If the tenant has renter’s insurance then that would likely cover the loss.
However, if the tenant can prove that the landlord was negligent in maintaining the refrigerator, then they might be able to hold the landlord responsible for the cost. An example of negligence would be repeated requests by the tenant to repair a failing refrigerator that are ignored by the landlord, resulting in the complete failure.
Landlords can protect themselves by promptly and effectively maintaining their property. Tenants can protect themselves by obtaining appropriate insurance coverage for their property.