Do I have a case against my landlordif they have not made a repair in my unit that has now become a safety issue?

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Do I have a case against my landlordif they have not made a repair in my unit that has now become a safety issue?

I’ve rented an apartment for about 15 months. Everytime it has rained since I moved in, my ceiling in the living room and out on the back patio has leaked. I’ve asked the maintenance to come out and fix it but I’m always told that someone will be out next week and no one ever comes. Last night I walked out to the patio to have a cigarette and I had just sat down when the ceiling had caved and landed in my lap. The ceiling has a drain pipe so the water from the roof can drain, that someone had patched with drywall. I have video from different dates.

Asked on August 2, 2011 Arizona

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 means the landlord is required to maintain the premises in a habitable condition by complying with state and local housing codes.  When there is a breach of the implied warranty of habitability, the tenant notifies the landlord as you have done and the landlord is required to respond within a reasonable time by making the necessary repairs.  When the landlord fails to respond within a reasonable time as occurred in your situation, the tenant has the following remedies:  The tenant can make the repairs and deduct the cost from the rent or the tenant can move out and terminate the obligation to pay rent for the balance of the term of the lease or if the tenant decides to stay on the premises, the tenant can withhold rent and defend against eviction.


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