1) My Landlord Stops By Unannounced – So you’ve been living in your rented apartment/house for some time and you’ve noticed that the landlord likes to randomly stop by like he/she owns the place. Okay, they do own it; however, they have no right to just stop by. The terms of your lease should include a clause that states the amount of time required to give the tenant a heads up that they will be stopping by. This is typically 24 hours. What does that mean? It means that the landlord needs to communicate their intentions to you a full day before their visit. While you rent a residence, your right to privacy is intact. That means you shouldn’t live in a constant state of uncertainty that the landlord might stop by.
There are emergency situations that allow the landlord to enter the residence without prior notice and these are typically in order to secure the wellbeing of the residence. In the event of a water leak or another issue that will cause damage to the property, the landlord has the right to enter and take care of the situation. While these situations are rare, it is the home owner’s right to secure their property.
2) My Landlord Doesn’t Fix Known Issues – When you have an issue that needs to be repaired within your residence you need to communicate in writing. If you call them, it may not be enough. Under the law, you need to give a written request for the repair along with a reasonable amount of time to get the repair done. Depending on the concern, two weeks is typically considered to be a reasonable amount of time. If you’ve done this and you still haven’t gotten an adequate response from your landlord, it’s time to take the next step, which is withholding rent.
Withholding rent doesn’t mean you just don’t pay rent, though. You need to go to the bank and open an escrow account with the intention of depositing your monthly rent payments. If months go by and you still haven’t had the issue fixed and it’s no longer safe to live where you are, you can then break the lease by invoking a constructive eviction.
If you feel that you qualify for a constructive eviction, this is when you need to turn to a lawyer for help. At The Ford Law Firm, we are experienced with helping tenants who have been wronged through the constructive eviction process. If you have any questions and would like a free consultation for your landlord concern, please call 248-579-9159.