Can I hold my landlord liable for expenses incurred due to damages from water seepage?

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Can I hold my landlord liable for expenses incurred due to damages from water seepage?

I informed my landlord 2 weeks ago that we were having a mold problem. The landlord came out and took a look, but didn’t fix anything. I requested in writing to have the problem repaired and listed the damages we had incurred as a result of the issue. I demanded a mold inspector survey the area; he told us that it was vital that we get a dehumidifer for the area. We are incurring hundreds of dollars in electrical expenses as a result of the issue, cleaning our mold damaged items, dry cleaning for suits with mold spores, etc. I have also lost wages because of this problem. What are my rights?

Asked on August 6, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Washington

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If a landlord does not repair a condition after having notice of it, then assuming the condition was not, in the first place, caused by anything the tenant or those under the tenant's control did, the landlord could be liable for the tenant's damage or losses. If the landlord will not voluntarily reimburse you, you could sue him. Be aware that it is unlikely you can recover lost wages--the courts do not often compensate people for the time they spend dealing with a matter--but it would be worth at least presenting that claim.


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