Entering into a lease can be trying experience, especially if you have a landlord who continually welches on the agreement. We always suggest that before taking any legal action against your landlord that you try to talk to them and come to an agreement about your concerns. However, if it must come to legal action here are some scenarios you may find yourself in and your legal rights against your landlord. In most cases your first course of action is to consult with an attorney.
Your Landlord is Evicting You
If you have been served with a termination notice and you intend to fight it, then it is all but imperative that you hire a lawyer to win your case. It is best to hire a lawyer that you don’t know personally who specializes in landlord-tenant relationship or real estate law. A lawyer will know more about the law and argue from an objective position.
Your Landlord isn’t Making Proper Repairs
Perhaps the biggest complaint that tenants have for their landlords is that they fail to make necessary and complete repairs outlined in a lease agreement. For example, if your air conditioning has gone out in the dead heat of an Arizona Summer and your landlord hasn’t done anything about it in a week.
Depending on the state you live in you may be able to withhold rent or make the repairs yourself and deduct the cost of repairs from your rent at the end of the month. Consulting with a lawyer beforehand will give you the best opinion for your particular case.
Injury or Illness
If you have been injured or become sick as a result of your landlord’s carelessness then you the right to take action against your landlord. One example of an actionable illness would be if your home contained toxic levels of black mold and your landlord ignored requests to have it removed.
If you believe you fall under this category you will need to contact a personal injury attorney with experience in premises liability.
Damage to Personal Property
If your personal property has been destroyed as a result of your landlord’s negligence, such as flood or a fire caused by faulty wiring, your first course of action is to file a claim with your renters insurance. Your insurance company will then seek reimbursement from the landlord.
If you don’t have renter’s insurance and the property damage is considerable then you may want to hire a lawyer to help you with your reimbursement.