Should I have to pay rent for next month if my rental will not be ready by then?

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Should I have to pay rent for next month if my rental will not be ready by then?

Renting apartment built this year, lease starts on the first of next month. The problem is that because of the historic preservation rules in the city, the front of the apartment is not finished because the city has not yet supplied the material. This means that the apartment is not ready, with no finished outside, windows, carpeting, or appliances. So, the apartment will not be done by the lease date. The realtor told us that it should be ready by mid-month, and the month’s rate would be reduced, but should we have to pay for the month at all?

Asked on June 20, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Absolutely. If the apartment is available mid-month, you are required to pay and the landlord is entitled to obtain payment from the time you move in. So if you pay a monthly rental, your rent would indeed be pro-rated. At this point, you need to determine if you still wish to move in or find other accommodations. If you need to find other housing, explain the breach to the landlord and have the landlord pay for your hotel stay until the apartment is ready. If the landlord is unwilling to do so, contact your state's consumer protection agency (AG or HUD usually) that handles such landlord tenant matters.


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