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Help! My Landlord Won’t Fix The Heat or A/C!

Help! My Landlord Won’t Fix The Heat or A/C!

If your landlord won’t fix the heat or the A/C, we can help you find solutions! Read on to learn more about your rights and what you can do in this situation. Specific laws and procedures will vary according to state and local law, but these general tips should be helpful for identifying what steps should be taken next.

Step 1: Read your lease.

Be sure to double check your lease to see what is covered in the contract you have signed and to understand the outlined responsibilities between you as the tenant and your landlord.

Step 2: Document the needed repairs and communication.

If you have already reached out to your landlord about a broken A/C or heating system, document what is in need of repairs. Take a video or snap photos from multiple angles. Be sure to communicate with your landlord via written communication such as a letter, text, or email so that you can have documented proof of attempted contact. Save these photos as proof of prior outreach to your landlord or, if necessary, in court.

Step 3: Write a repair request.

If your landlord won’t fix the heat or A/C, you may need to ensure you’re making an official repair request. Writing an official request via letter or email can help your landlord understand that this is an important issue that needs to be addressed as soon as possible. It also gives the landlord time to reasonably think over your request instead of making an immediate denial.

In your request, be sure to provide photos or video of the issue. Provide detail about when the problem started, how it happened, and any changes that have happened since it first started. Be sure to describe the problem with as much detail as you can and how it is affecting your ability to live comfortably within your rented unit.

You can also mention any clauses mentioned in the lease about the landlord’s repair responsibilities, or you can mention your right as a tenant to live in a hospitable space. If your area experiences extreme temperatures or you have a medical condition that requires certain temperatures to be maintained, this could qualify as a hospitality violation depending on your state and local laws.

If your landlord won't fix the heat or A/C, we're here to help. A picture of a blackboard sign that says "We Have Air Conditioning" written in chalk. By Unsplash user René DeAnda.
By Unsplash user René DeAnda.

Step 4: Consult an attorney or seek legal aid.

If your landlord consistently ignores your requests or refuses to help you, it may be time to consult an attorney about further steps you can take. If your landlord won’t fix the heat or A/C, you can ask specific legal questions about your situation at JustAnswer. Click on over to chat with a lawyer now.

You can also receive free legal advice through Law Help or ask around on the legal forum Avvo. Find more information on free legal help with this guide from Low Income Relief.

Step 5: Suing your landlord.

If your landlord won’t fix the heat or A/C after all of this, it may be time to consider legal action. This decision should be a last resort taken after exhausting all the other methods and after consulting with an attorney or seeking legal aid. Suing your landlord will be a time consuming and costly approach that will strain your relationship with them, but it may be the only way to have your landlord address the problem at hand.

Be sure to follow any professional legal advice given to you. You can read our other articles, How to Win a Lawsuit Against a Landlord and What Is a Security Deposit Used For?, which can provide insight into the legal process.

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As a third-year English major with years of researching and writing experience, Chloe uses her experience and her passion for helping others to help you get the financial aid you deserve.