What to do if my landlord has refused to fix my plumbing even though it was like this when we got the apartment?

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What to do if my landlord has refused to fix my plumbing even though it was like this when we got the apartment?

We have made request over the last 2 months and they have still done nothing. Yes we have talked to them many times. When we confronted the maintenance man about our many maintenance problems and asked if he could do anything he proceeded to cuss us out and did not fix the problem. Because of this pumbling issue there is mold all over the bathroom and our bedrooms. They came and ripped the carpet up for that but then basically refused to put down new carpet. And then threatened they would cut off our power for two days if we complained. Do you think I have a case against them? Honestly I would just like to move and have 30 days to do so. I do not want to deal with this for the rest of my lease.

Asked on October 10, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Alabama

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You should consult wth a landlord-tenant attorney: you may have legal grounds to seek a court order forcing the landlord to fix the problem, and/or seeking monetary compensation for the time you have been living with the problem, and/or to terminate your lease early without penalty. All rental units come with what's called the "implied warranty of habitability": the obligation, imposed on the landlord, to rent premises which are fit for their intended purpose--such as residence. Conditions that render the premises unfit for residence--such as unhealthy mold conditions; severe plumbing problems; or floors that may not be safe to walk on (e.g. exposed bad splinters, staples, nails, tacks, etc.--can violat this warranty and give the tenant a legal claim against the landlord. Note also that a landlord may not cut off your power or other utilities to punish you for complaining; doing so would be considered illegal eviction and give you another claim against the landlord.


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