What to do about the payment of rent if your landlord is in breach of the lease?

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What to do about the payment of rent if your landlord is in breach of the lease?

We’re are a non-profit that rents space for our offices. Originally, the building provided a full time receptionist and internet which is included in the contract we signed for executive suites. For the last 2 months, there has not been a full-time receptionist and now for the last 2 days we have no internet. We also rent a commercial kitchen space from them which according to the fire marshall is not up to code and does not have the inspections completed that are mandatory for kitchens. Also, we notified them that the hood fan for the stove was making popping electrical noises so we cannot run it which is against health code. Due to all of these issues, are we allowed to withhold rent until the services are restored and inspections are complete?

Asked on March 26, 2013 under Real Estate Law, California

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

A commercial lease is different than a residential lease, so please understand that your rights are less than in a residential lease. This is a business contract. If your landlord breached the lease, you can do the following but check your lease regarding these provisions. You can send him written notice of the violations and inform him that per the contract agreement, he has x amount of time to repair or you will repair yourself and deduct those costs from your rent.


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