If I have mold in my bedroom and it is making me sick, can I move out without giving a 30 day notice?

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If I have mold in my bedroom and it is making me sick, can I move out without giving a 30 day notice?

The house we rent has developed mold in the bedroom. He came over once to take pictures of the house for insurance purposes and my husband showed him the damage to our bedroom. He said he would send someone to fix it but never did. Now we are both sick and I have gone to my doctor and allergy specialist and he verified my symptoms (throwing up, nose bleeds, head aches, body aches, itching) are due to the mold. Because I called the city inspector and health inspector he is now doing something about it. We want to move now. Do I have to give a 30 day notice? I’m getting sicker by the day. My lease expired 2 years ago.

Asked on April 24, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Texas

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.  The mold is a health issue and constitutes a breach of the implied warranty of habitability.

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 by making the necessary repairs, the tenant has the following options:  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 (you have a month-to-month tenancy since your lease expired) or if the tenant stays on the premises, the tenant can withhold rent and defend against eviction.  Another alternative is to sue the landlord for breach of the implied warranty of habitability.  When there is a breach of the implied warranty of habitability, you don't need to give the required notice before moving out.


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