What are a tenant’s rights after an apartment fire?

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What are a tenant’s rights after an apartment fire?

Our apartment was in a fire recently due to faulty wiring. The fire was caused my wire and circuit problems. The Red Cross paid for 3 days hotel stay and my ownder agreed to pay for one day. The owner told us that she will repair the apartment within a few weeks and we can move back. She now told us that we should move out and find another place to stay. She only gave us a weekend to do that. Is this reasonable? She also said that she can terminate the lease.

Asked on October 31, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Texas

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

You apartment has become uninhabitable since the fire and I am sure that it was given so many citations that the owner is overwhelmed and repairing the place has now become a really hard thing to do in a short period of time.  Or it may not be able to be repaired at all.  It is true what your landlord said: that you may have the right to terminate the lease.  Rights do vary from state to state. Generally you also do not have to pay rent if the apartmentis uninhabitable. But you want more, correct?  You want relocation or something?  Those rights are not necessarily available.  I would seek help from an attorney in your area as to this matter.  You also need to deal with the issue of your belongings and insurance claims to be made.  Good luck.  


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