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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Business Law
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Experience:  All corporate law, including non-profits and charitable fraternal organizations.
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My husband and I own & Operate a small Country Store & Deli

Resolved Question:

My husband and I own & Operate a small Country Store & Deli in Mariposa CA.
Our lease says that Landlord is responsible for the water system.
My question: Is the Well, Tank, Pump & New Clorination system his responsibility to maintain? which is required by the state.
Also our Lease says: Landlord is responsible for Walls, Roof, Common Areas, Plumbing, Electric, Heating & Cooling System. Our Walk In Cooler floor is collapsing, the walk in cooler is part of the building and we did not buy it when we bought the business from him.
My question is: Who is responsible for the repairs/replacement of the floor?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Business Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 4 years ago.
If your lease states that he is responsible for the water system and the floors/walls etc then the LANDLORD is responsible here and you need to send the landlord a written notice on both issues and inform him he is in breach of the lease and that you will 1) pay for the repairs and deduct the costs of repairs from the rent or 2) you will withhold rent until he makes repairs as required under the lease. The floor is part of the structure and the landlord's liability.


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Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Is there a Cailfornia code that you can give us that we can reference in our letter to the landlord?
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 4 years ago.
You have a written lease, this is a contract, thus the law is not statutory, it is contractual and you point out to the landlord where in your lease contract it specifies his liability and inform him to abide by what is written in the contract.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
In our contract it does not indicate whether we can or cant with hold the rent or deduct from the rent for the cost of the repairs, It does say that we can charge the land lord for the cost. The cost of repairing the cooler floor is substancial and we are under pressure by the County Health Department to fix/replace immediately, Knowing that he has indicated that he refuses to pay such cost, Can we legaly hold the rent to pay for such cost and for how long?
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 4 years ago.
No that part is something developed through the case laws on breach of contract in the breach of lease cases. You can pay the cost for the floor and then deduct that from rent (which is what charging the landlord for cost is). The withholding the rent is another remedy developed by the courts and in a sense you are paying rent by putting it aside into a separate account and sending the landlord proof you are holding the rent but it is a means to force compliance with the contract by showing your good faith payments (so to speak) but keeping the landlord from getting those payments until they cure their breach. You can hold the rent until the repairs are made, but when doing so you need to send the landlord proof each month when rent is due that you have deposited the money in an account specifically for that rent and a letter that rent was paid into the account but you will not release it to him until he cures the breach. As you are a business, if the landlord sues you over this, you will need an attorney to file a countersuit against the landlord for breach of the lease.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 92810
Experience: All corporate law, including non-profits and charitable fraternal organizations.
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