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Is your apartment infested with cockroaches and the landlord refuses to effectively fumigate?

What makes a unit uninhabitable?

A rental unit is classified as uninhabitable if it lacks one or more of the following features: Buildings and grounds free from rodents, insects, and other pests; plumbing, electricity, and gas in proper working condition; sufficient heating facilities in at least four rooms; buildings and grounds free from mold, lead, or other structural hazards; adequate hygiene and does not endanger the occupant's health. Please review the complete requirements for rental units in Section 1941.1 of the California Civil Code.

What steps must the landlord take to ensure the rental unit meets habitability standards?

The landlord is obligated to ensure the rental unit is habitable prior to the key handover. This includes addressing any issues that pose significant health and safety risks, as well as repairing conditions not in compliance with state and local building and health codes, under the implied warranty of habitability. If the landlord fails to meet these standards, legal action may be necessary. A tenants' rights lawyer can help you navigate this process, filing a claim against the landlord and advocating for compensation on your behalf.

What can I do if my landlord refuses to provide maintenance to the property?

If your landlord refuses to provide maintenance to the property or rental unit, you should immediately file a written complaint. The complaint should include a detailed description of the issue, along with any health or safety complications you are experiencing. If you live in a city with rent control, you should register your complaint with the housing department. We encourage you to consult with a California tenants' lawyer before taking legal action against your landlord.

Does my landlord have to pay for an exterminator?

If your rental unit is infested with rodents, insects, or other pests, then your landlord must pay for an exterminator. For example, under Section 1945.604 of the California Civil Code, the landlord is required to perform follow-up until all bedbugs are eliminated from the rental unit and surrounding facilities.

What should I do if a future rental unit has some issues?

Many people lack a variety of options when it comes to finding a place to live. Often, a person is forced to sign a lease agreement for a rental unit with serious issues. Here are some steps to take after discovering problems with a potential rental unit: Submit a written description or detailed list of any problems, request that the issues be addressed before committing to sign a lease agreement, consult with a Los Angeles tenants' rights lawyer before making any final decisions.

Why is it important to contact the health department if my apartment has cockroaches?

Cockroaches aren't just a nuisance. They carry diseases like salmonella and E. coli and can trigger asthma attacks. If your landlord doesn't hire an exterminator to help address the issue, call your local health department to report the infestation.Once you've filed a complaint with your local health department, they'll investigate by sending a health inspector to the property. The inspector will assess the tenant's complaint and check for any health violations. If violations are found, the inspector will prepare a report detailing the issues and the landlord's deadline to address them. This report is then sent to the landlord. The landlord is given a set timeframe to rectify the violations. Once fixed, the landlord can request a re-inspection. If the violations persist, the health department can impose fines on the landlord.

Can my landlord be held responsible for lead poisoning?

Landlords can possibly be held responsible for lead poisoning if the lead exposure was caused by a property defect or landlord negligence. Lead poisoning is a serious health issue resulting from exposure to lead-based paint or other lead sources in a property. Lead exposure can cause damage to the brain and nervous system, especially in young children, and can lead to lifelong health problems. If a landlord fails to take necessary steps to remove lead hazards from their property or fails to disclose known lead hazards to their tenants, they may be held liable for any injuries resulting from lead poisoning.

Why is it important to contact the health department if I suspect my apartment has lead paint?

If you live in a house or apartment building built before 1978, it's possible that lead paint was used at some point. This isn't necessarily a cause for concern unless the paint is peeling or chipping. Lead is a toxic substance, especially harmful to babies and children, as it can damage their brains and lead to learning problems. Every city and town have its own set of regulations that landlords must follow when it comes to painting their rental properties, but it's almost certain that no matter where you live, the landlord is responsible for keeping the paint in their home fresh and free of peeling and chipping. If you have a negligent landlord who doesn't maintain the paint in their home, especially an older home, you should contact your health department.

What is REAP?

The Rent Escrow Account Program (REAP) is designed to tackle persistent health, safety, and habitability issues in rental properties within the city. It incentivizes landlords to undertake repairs and restore the property to a safe and livable state. Tenants living in affected units may qualify for a rent reduction ranging from 10% to 50%, depending on the severity of the violations. They can choose to pay the reduced rent to the landlord or deposit it into an escrow account managed by the Department. Funds in the escrow account are accessible to the landlord, tenants, or other parties through an application process. Eligible tenants can apply for these funds to cover repair costs, utility bills, or even relocation expenses. If your building is part of REAP and your landlord fails to address issues, contact Castelblanco Law Group for assistance in initiating legal action against your landlord.