What can I do if atoilet in the apartment above me overflowed and the complex had my apartment carpet cleaned but left the urine stained sheetrock up?

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What can I do if atoilet in the apartment above me overflowed and the complex had my apartment carpet cleaned but left the urine stained sheetrock up?

Can I break my contract at my apartment and it not affect me.

Asked on February 8, 2012 under Real Estate Law, South Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If a condition renders a rental premises essentially unfit for habitation, it can provide a basis for terminating a lease; the theory is that the "implied warranty of habitability," or the obligation that a rental premises be fit for its intended purpose (e.g. residence), is violated by the condition. However, problems, even "gross" ones, which do not fundamentally make the premises uninhabitable do not provide a basis for terminating the lease; a key issue, then is how much sheetrock, is it moldy, etc. At some point, it would be presumably bad enough to justify termination; but a small amount of stained sheetrock would not.

Also note that you first must provide your landlord written notice of the situation, a written  request that it be corrected, and enough time to correct it (if he or she is so inclined)--i.e. the landlord needs a formal opportunity to "cure" the problem.


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