Is a landlord obligated to provide locks on all doors of a rental if no locks were present upoun tenants moving in?

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Is a landlord obligated to provide locks on all doors of a rental if no locks were present upoun tenants moving in?

Also, is a landlord allowed to rent a home if there are exposed electrical wires hanging out of the outlets?

Asked on October 2, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Montana

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

A landlord is obligated, by what's known as the "implied warranty of habitability," to provide rental premises that are "fit for their intented purpose"--in this case, safe to live in. A failure to provide locks on the outside doors is unsafe (intruders can get in); exposed wiring is also unsafe. The landlord must correct these situations; if the landlrod does not, the tenants may be entitled to do one or more of: 1) fix the problems themselves, then deduct the cost from the rent; 2) seek a court order requiring the repairs; 3) seek monetary compensation for living with unsafe conditions; 4) terminate the tenancy without penalty.

The landlord does first have to be given notice of the problems, and a reasonable amount of time to address them.


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