Can I use the lack of carbon monoxide detectors to break my lease?

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Can I use the lack of carbon monoxide detectors to break my lease?

Under state law carbon monoxide detectors are required. I signed a lease that said that they are there; they are not. The landlord said that they would be installed; they were not. I still haven’t moved in and it’s been a week and they still haven’t put them in. Can I use this to get out of my lease? Is there anything else I can do to get out of the lease?

Asked on October 19, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Montana

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If you want out of your lease due to the absence of carbon monoxide detectors as required by your state in your rental, you need to carefully read your lease (assuming you have a written lease) in that its terms and conditions control the obligations owed you by the landlord and vice versa in the absence of conflicting state law. Read all provisions as to what consitutes a breach of the agreement by your landlord and perhaps the detector's failure to be in place may be one.

If not, and you want the detector installed, advise the landlord in writing that it needs to be in place by a certain date and if not, you will contact the local building and permit department for the need of an inspection. Keep a copy of the letter for future reference.

Good luck.


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