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Marc Esq USA
Marc Esq USA, Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 203
Experience:  Experienced consumer law attorney knows the law and provides customized answers and solutions that you can use.
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Could someone please help me with a letter to my landlord

Customer Question

Could someone please help me with a letter to my landlord wanting to get out of my lease without pentalty. I have notified my landlord about my dishwasher and garbage disposal being broken and leaking several times. This has been going on for weeks and I have asked via email and phone multiple times. The dishwasher is constantly leaking dirty water on the floor leaving a nasty smell and possible mold
Submitted: 1 month ago.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Expert:  Marc Esq USA replied 1 month ago.

Hello. My name is Marc. I'm a licensed attorney, experienced in landlord tenant law, and I will be happy to assist you. To begin with, do you have a copy of your lease? If so, please attach it here and I'll get right back to you.

Thanks.

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Here is the pages I think you would need,
Thanks
Expert:  Marc Esq USA replied 1 month ago.

Thanks. I'm reviewing them now.

Expert:  Marc Esq USA replied 1 month ago.

Hi,

First, I'll discuss the issues/problems involved here; then I'll provide a rough draft for the letter you requested.

There are legal and practical things to consider here: Legally, you have a valid argument that the landlord breached not only the terms of the lease, but also an implied warranty of habitability by ignoring your requests for repairs. As such, you have a valid legal reason to terminate your lease without penalty. However, legally, the landlord can simply argue the opposite - that there was nothing wrong with the dishwasher/disposal and/or that, even if it was leaking, it's failure to repair it didn't not breach the lease or implied warranty of habitability.

What this means in practical terms is that, even if you have a good reason to leave, the landlord may simply withhold your security deposit in lieu of the penalty. You would then have to sue the landlord to get it back. That would be time consuming.

Also, the landlord will have one other option: After receiving your letter, the landlord might finally respond and make the necessary repairs. If that is done within 2-4 weeks after your letter, then the landlord will have cured any alleged breach of the lease or warranty of habitability. You will then not be entitled to terminate without penalty. Then again, if the problem is fixed, you probably will no longer want to leave anyway.

So, your letter should seek to achieve either of the following: (1) to put your landlord on notice that it has breached the lease and the warranty of habitability and that if the repairs are not made within 10 days, you intend to terminate the lease and you expect that you will not be charged the penalty; or (2) having put your landlord on notice, motivate the landlord to make the necessary repairs within 10 days.

Please stand by while I compose a draft letter and some final points....

Expert:  Marc Esq USA replied 1 month ago.

Draft letter

----

To Whom it May Concern:

My name is _________. I am a resident of the Spanish Wells Apartments, # ____. I am writing to provide one final request for necessary repairs in my apartment, as well as to provide formal notice that I intend to terminate my lease - without penalty - if said repairs are not made within 10 days following the date of this letter.

I have made several requests for repairs of my dishwasher and garbage disposal. I have made these requests in writing (or via email) on _______, _______, and ______, as well as by phone on ______ and _____. I have spoken with ________ about the need for these repairs.

Specifically, my dishwasher and garbage disposal have been leaking dirty water onto the floor of my kitchen for several weeks. In addition to the inconvenience this continues to cause, it has begun to cause a more serious problem - mold. There is now a fowl smell in the area of the leak that does not go away no matter how much I clean and sanitize. This leads me to believe that, as a result of the leak, mold or some other contamination is beginning to grow in, under and around the area. I cannot tolerate the odor this causes, and it is causing me to fear for my health.

Therefore, I am once again and for the last time requesting that you make the necessary repairs so that I can continue living here without suffering the leaks and the odor and without fearing for my health. Accordingly, I request that you make the necessary repairs within 10 days following the date of this letter.

Please be advised that I shall consider any failure to respond as a breach of not only the terms of the lease agreement, but also a breach of the implied warranty of habitability, according to which you are required to provide me with, among other things, a premises that is free of dangers such as that which is growing in my kitchen. Any such breach will entitle me to terminate the lease without penalty. Therefore, please be advised that, should you fail to make the necessary repairs within 10 days, I will terminate my lease and you will not be entitled to any early termination penalty.

Yours sincerely,

_______

Some final points coming up....

Expert:  Marc Esq USA replied 1 month ago.

I hope this works for you. All I can say is that "mold" is like a magic word that gets the attention of most conscientious landlords. This will place the ball in your landlord's court. Keep in mind, however, that some landlords and management companies just don't give a damn. The worst case scenario here will be that you terminate, leave and refuse to pay the penalty. This might result in the landlord keeping your security deposit and/or a negative report on your credit history. So, I hope your landlord is reasonable here. Good luck!!

Also, I hope my answer and letter help you to better understand your issues and options. If so, please be sure to rate my answer, since that is the only way I can receive credit.

Kind regards,

Marc