Legal rights for renter after a kicthen Fire

I had a fire in my house that I am renting. What are my rights? Do I still pay rent or can I get out of the lease?

Asked on March 24, 2018 under Real Estate Law, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

If the home is still habitable and the fire was not your fault, you are still obligated to the lease and must still pay rent, though you should receive an abatement or credit to your rent equal to the % of the house not usable due to damage, for however long it is not usuable. Example: a home that still has water and power, where the fire was contained to an area equal to around 20% of the square footage--you might get a 20% abatement.
If the home is not habitable and the fire was not your fault, you can get out of the lease and do not have to pay rent after the fire.
If the fire was your fault, you are still held to the lease--you cannot use your own damage to get out of it--and will have to pay for repairs.


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