Is there legal action or anything we can do to help ourselves to get our management to cover the repairs in our apartment?

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Is there legal action or anything we can do to help ourselves to get our management to cover the repairs in our apartment?

We live in an apartment complex and within the first few months of moving in had to have the laminate redone due to a pipe bursting under our kitchen floor and flooding. The management replaced everything quickly and we thought it was a job done correctly. Well soon after it was done we had noticed that when they had moved back the kitchen appliances they tore the laminate flooring at the corners of the appliances. We called the management and asked them about it and they said we would not be charged for it whenever we decide to move. I admit when we moved our refrigerator to clean up a spill we had torn the corners of laminate also where it sits on accident. However, since the replacement over time our floor seems to be peeling up in the corners of our kitchen and bathroom floors as well as a roach infestation that has gotten worse over time. Also after a couple months of the job done management had been changed and we are under new management and the the replacement of the flooring was dun with the old management and there is no paperwork that i signed or know of that exist stating it was done. So we have called our new management and have asked them to come in to look at the floor and have asked them to fix the floor in which the areas of peeling and such. Well when the maintenance came in we tried showing them where it was peeling in the kitchen first and they noticed the rips by where the appliances are and said straight off the bat we were going to have to pay for the rips when we explained to them that most were due to the old management when they put back the appliances when the laminate was replaced due to the pipes. They quickly said OK well let us go talk to management and we’ll be back before we even got to show them the rest of the damage in the bathroom area and tell them about our roach problem. They came back and continued to play the blame game about the rips and said we were going have to pay for that my roommate stated to them the only thing we were responsible for where the refrigerator sits. They had no paperwork or anything they knew of the old management repairs and said once again they would go talk to management. They left and never came back. Mind you all this happened yesterday. So my roommate called the management office this morning and asked so what is the situation and if our floor was going to get replaced and the woman in a rude tone still stated we were going have to pay for the damage the tore areas and how much it cost per square foot. We do not have that kind money for that kind of repair. What can we do because it sounds like they are just trying to get out of paying for it and making us pay and we still have not gotten to show them the rest of the damage and tell them about our roach problem. Is there legal action or anything we can do to help ourselves in this situation?

Asked on November 2, 2011 under Real Estate Law, California

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If you are in a situation involving the property management where repairs were in your opinion not properly performed as a result of the burst water pipes as well as other conditions, you need to set a written paper trail to the management company as to the rental's condition keeping a copy of the letter or letters for future reference.

It is very important for you as the tenants to set forth your position that you are not responsible for the problems at the unit so you will not be blamed and be required to pay for the repairs.

You also need to advise management of the roach problem as well and have it resolve the issue. To rectify the roach problem, if management is not responsive, contact your local health department for an inspection. If a citation is issued, you landlord will be required to begin the process to eliminate the vermin or be subject to fines and penalties.

Good luck.


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