If I’m currently trying to break my lease, what are my rights?

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If I’m currently trying to break my lease, what are my rights?

We have a huge flea problem here in my apartment complex and I do not have pets. I have been in contact with the landlord about this several times and have purchased several things to try and get rid of them yet they are still here. I have evidence – pictures of bites, reciepts from the purchases of the flea stuff, etc. Also, my neighbors are both physically and verbally abusive toward each other and this has been reported to my landlord as well. In fact, I have a police documentation on a neighbor threatening my family. I had to call the landlord for the violence becoming out of control and them breaking windows. I legitimately do not feel safe here.

Asked on January 23, 2016 under Real Estate Law, Maine

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

You may have grounds to terminate your lease, but be warnes that the two grounds below are subjective; that is, if your landlord sues you for rent after you leave, a judge could view matters differently than you do and find that you were not entitled to break you lease.
The two grounds:
Breach of the implied warranty of habitability. Leased premises must be fit for residence. A failure to address a peat infestation despite notice from the tenants that there is a problem can violate this obligation and provide grounds to move out.
Breach of the implied covenant of quiet enjoyment. If a landlord fails to actions against other tenants who are harrasing you can violate you right to quietly enjoy your rental--but note that the landlord is only responsible for takjng action against tenants, so if the neighbors are not felow tenants, the landlord is not responsible for them and you can't break the lease for this reason.
 


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