Can I sue my former landlord for reduced rentregarding theremovalof ahot tub?

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Can I sue my former landlord for reduced rentregarding theremovalof ahot tub?

The home I rented advertised a hot tub and indeed was on the patio. When I asked the landlord for instructions on how to use it I was told it would be removed and taken to the owner/landlord’s new home. Several months later it was finally removed. We lived in the home for 3 years and I had asked for a reduction in rent or maybe a new appliance to offset its removal. Can I sue him for the reduction in rent even if a hotub was not mentioned in the lease?

Asked on July 10, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Oregon

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Here are the problems that I see in this matter.  First, it is quite doubtful that the courts will view a hot tub as a "necessity" under the landlord tenant laws in any state, thereby breaching a warranty of habitability by the landlord.  Geenerally speaking, when a warranty of habitability is broken by the landlord the tenant will start  proceeding to pay the rent in to court until the problem is fixed and ask for an "abatement" or reduction of the rent until such time as the problem is fixed.  Second, the hot tub is not listed in the lease and can not be seen as part of the "basis of the bargain" in contract.  It could, though, be seen as false advertising and if you relied upon it to rent the apartment or it can be termed a "fixture" then maybe you can.  Try it.  You never know. 


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