I strongly suggest you contact legal counsil because they know the state laws for whatever state you live in regarding "slum lord" type landloards. I found a website that may shed some light until you can contact an attorney: http://www.tenant.net/Other_Areas/Calif/misc/tenant.html (It's for california, but I don't forsee much difference in the laws) 4. IF REPAIRS ARE NEEDED, WHAT SHOULD I DO? An important court decision states that in each rental agreement there is an implied warranty of "habitability" (i.e., a landlord must put a building unto a condition fit for human occupancy). You cannot sign away your right to this warranty of habitability. (Green v. Superior Court (1974) 111 Cal Reptr. 704) A landlord must repair all problems which fall under his/her minimum obligations, unless the damages were caused by your lack of care. A landlord's minimum obligations include that: 1. There are no leaks when it rains, and no broken doors or windows. 2. The plumbing has to work, including hot and cold water, and there must be a working sewer or septic tank connection. 3. The heater has to work and be safe. 4. The lights and wiring have to work and be safe. 5. Floors, stairways and railings have to be in good repair. 6. When it's rented, the place has to be clean, with no piles of trash or garbage and no rats, mice, roaches or other pests. 7. The landlord has to provide enough cans or bins with covers for the garbage. (Sec. 1941 of CC) If you have problems with any of the above, the law says that you should take each of the following steps: 1. Inform your landlord about the needed repairs, making sure your landlord knows exactly what is wrong. You may do this orally or in writing, but written notice will offer you better protection. 2. Wait a reasonable amount of time for the repairs to be made. "Reasonable" depends on the circumstances. If you don't have heat in a cold month, you only have to wait a few days. The law says that 30 days is "presumed" to be reasonable. This means that if you wait fewer than 30 days and the case goes to court, you must prove the shorter wait was reasonable. 3. If the repairs are not made by the landlord within a reasonable time, you make have the made yourself. Keep a record of the costs and then deduct them from your next rental payment. Or you may move out and not be responsible for paying any more rent. If you make the repairs on your own, the cost you deduct can't be more than one month's rent, and you can't use this right more than two times in any 12-month period. (Sec. 1942 of CC) You cannot give up your legal right to repair and offset (deduct the cost) unless your rent was lowered because you agreed to do things your landlord normally is required to do. But if you made such an agreement under pressure in order to get your place, the agreement is not binding. You may try another approach to get your landlord to fix the problem. If your place does not meet the required standards of habitability, you also could stop paying rent until the needed repairs are made. If your landlord takes you to court, you can argue that you have the right to withhold some rent to get the landlord to make repairs. However, you should talk to a lawyer before withholding rent because this is a complicated process. If you withhold some of the rent, you probably should also deposit it into a special "escrow" account, to show that you are willing to pay the rent if the landlord makes the repairs. A special savings account or an account set up by the court are examples of a special account.
by Kay Ray - 5 hours ago
You know, you can always withhold the rent. But you don't just withhold it and pocket the money. Send a certified letter to the landlord explaining everything that's wrong with the property, and how long these things have been in this condition. Taking pictures is also a VERY good idea. Tell him that if he doesn't fix everything that's broken you'll be forced to withhold the rent, and you'll be applying the rent to repairs. Give him a month to respond. If he doesn't respond, or doesn't start repairs within that time, you start doing it yourself. KEEP ALL RECEIPTS. Make copies, and send them to him. I don't know where you live, but here in Buffalo the city will take receivership of properties like this. That's what happened to us, and receivership sucks because the city isn't doing much more to get stuff fixed around here then the landlord was. Anyway, good luck man, you're gonna need it.
by Nate - 5 hours ago
i would look over your rental contract, thats what it comes down to. after seeking legal help we realized that the landlord stated in our contract that he was not liable for the reliablity of appliances and any "toilet" problems(although we didnt have any issues). BUT some states have laws that state the house must be liveable, (and all that jazz)which it sounds like yours isnt!!! seek legal advice!
by Val - 5 hours ago
I'm not to sure about what the law's are in the U.S.A. but here in Canada you would call the Board of Health. They would inspect your home and make a court order for the repairs to be done. If not the they send someone out to fix them and bill the landlord. Mold is toxic, and more so to kids. It can and will cause many lung infections, including asthma. Try your local member of government and see if they in any way can help you with this. Hope this helps in some way. Good luck.
by blueeyedbitchca - 5 hours ago
just take an action about ur landlord.he must be punished
by tuntuni11 - 5 hours ago
Tell him that you are worried about health issues and would like the local authority's health inspectors to visit. In the meanwhile check out the authority's position on this - talk to them without actually arranging a visit until the landlord has got back to you.
by Singo - 5 hours ago
Call the health department,it's a health hazard and he is ignoring it!!!!
by My kids' mom - 5 hours ago
you can bring in the department of health. legally you are allowed to break your lease if the living conditions are unsuitable which they clearly are.
by Alex B - 5 hours ago
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