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legalgems
legalgems, attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
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I am a renter in CA, the property management company has

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I am a renter in CA, the property management company has done a shitty work to maintain the apartment, especially the windows. The window is single panel and the some windows frames are rusted and distorted; thus it doesn't reduce street noise and also leak heat from the house. As a renter, what legal actions could I take to encourage the property company to replace the windows at their cost?

Good Day!A few minutes please as I review your question so I can provide you with legal information. Thanks!

Every lease has an implied warranty of habilitability, and an implied warranty of quiet use and enjoyment.

Under the "implied warranty of habitability," the landlord is legally responsible for repairing conditions that seriously affect the rental unit's habitability; the landlord must repair substantial defects in the unit and ensure compliance with state and local building and health codes. The idea is that it is a safe living environment. However, the landlord is not responsible under the implied warranty of habitability for repairing damages that were caused by the tenant or the tenant's family, guests, or pets.
The implied covenant of quiet use and enjoyment means that the tenant is entitled to the peaceful use of the premises.

These are implied in every lease and cannot be waived.
Violation of these covenants/warranties constitute "constructive eviction". CA does provide more guidance than most states and usually the situation must go to the very core of the unit- and affect one's health; for example:

A dwelling also may be considered uninhabitable (unlivable) if it substantially lacks any of the following:139

  • Effective waterproofing and weather protection of roof and exterior walls, including unbroken windows and doors.
  • Plumbing facilities in good working order, including hot and cold running water, connected to a sewage disposal system.
  • Gas facilities in good working order.
  • Heating facilities in good working order.
  • An electric system, including lighting, wiring, and equipment, in good working order.
  • Clean and sanitary buildings, grounds, and appurtenances (for example, a garden or a detached garage), free from debris, filth, rubbish, garbage, rodents, and vermin.
  • Adequate trash receptacles in good repair.
  • Floors, stairways, and railings in good repair.

http://www.dca.ca.gov/publications/landlordbook/problems.shtml

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Customer: replied 29 days ago.
Thanks for the information. The property doesn't have obvious violation listed above.Speaking of "affect one's health", during the period I lived in the house, I do get diagnosed of clinic depression, partially due to poor sleep quality caused by the street noise. How should I prepare the docs to prove the linkage?

That is very difficult to prove since that can be more subjective (the noise level each person can tolerate). To succeed in a noise complaint it helps to show that the local noise ordinance or noise curfews were violated - that can be introduced to show the noise was excessive.