Can my landlord not fix the breakers/box andA/C unit in my home?

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Can my landlord not fix the breakers/box andA/C unit in my home?

She said she does not have to repair the A/Cunit and her replacing the breaker box and switches is just a convenience. I have to now manually flip breaker switches to turn on AC or Heat. The breakers switched have been replaced at different times because they would spark, burn up and then go out. She says this is not a risk for us.

Asked on July 25, 2011 Missouri

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

In every lease, there is an implied warranty of habitability which requires the landlord to maintain the premises in a habitable condition by complying with local and state housing codes.  What you have described with the circuit breakers may be a potential fire hazard.  As for the air conditioner not being repaired, that may pose a health and safety issue given the current heat wave.  When there is a breach of the implied warranty of habitability, tenant notifies landlord and landlord is required to respond within a reasonable time by making the necessary repairs.

If the landlord does not respond by making the repairs within a reasonable time to a breach of the implied warranty of habitability, tenant can make the repairs (have an electrician fix the circuit breakers and someone to repair the air conditioner)  and deduct the cost from the rent or tenant can move out and terminate the obligation to pay rent for the balance of the term of the lease or if tenant decides to stay on the premises, tenant can withhold rent and defend against eviction. 


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