Can I demand that my landlord put off roof repair for hail damage until I move out out in 6 weeks because the noise hurts my autistic son’s ears?

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Can I demand that my landlord put off roof repair for hail damage until I move out out in 6 weeks because the noise hurts my autistic son’s ears?

My landlord notified me 2 weeks ago that she was moving and that I had 60 days to vacate the premises. In the meantime, she had a roofer look at the roof on the home that I am renting, and it was determined that it needed full repair. It is not leaking. The contractor said that it would take 2 days of dawn to dusk working to repair this. I have a son with autism and he is very sensitive to noises. All of my relatives are located in another state so we have no where to go, nor do we have the money to stay in a hotel for the 2 days that the work will be going on.

Asked on May 12, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Kentucky

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

No, unfortunately tenants do not have the right to determine when a landlord does repairs or maintenance on his or her property. While a landlord is prohibited from violating a tenant's "right to quiet enjoyment" of his or her property, 1) this right is not absolute, and can be overcome for necessary repairs or maintenance (and "necessary" does not require that they be "urgent"), and often even to make improvements; and 2) is judged by the standard of a hypothetical "reasonable" or average tenant, not by the standards of the specific affected tenant, if he or she (or his or her family) is particularly sensitive. From what yo write, it appears the landlord can do this work.


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