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I just moved into this apartment in Florida a month and a half

Customer Question
ago. I have already had...
I just moved into this apartment in Florida a month and a half ago. I have already had to call the police twice because of noise. I let the apartments know and it didn't get any better. The oven, toilet, fan, air conditioner, and sink drain are already broken. I let them know about the fan when I moved in and it is yet to be fixed. The ac has been broken for 2 days. Maintenance came when I was gone and left a note that it's fine and at 72 degrees when the ac clearly says it on 80. I have called for maintenance twice since then and got no repsonse. Can I get out of the lease?
Submitted: 6 years ago.Category: Real Estate Law
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Answered in 13 minutes by:
9/18/2011
Real Estate Lawyer: TJ, Esq., Attorney replied 6 years ago
TJ, Esq.
TJ, Esq., Attorney
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 12,474
Experience: JD, MBA
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Hello and thank you for allowing me the opportunity to assist you.

Please note that for legal reasons my answers are only intended to be general/educational information rather than specific legal advice. If you need specific legal advice, then you must consult with a local attorney in your jurisdiction.

A tenant can cancel a lease for a material breach of contract. Generally speaking, a tenant must complain to the landlord in writing, and give the landlord a reasonable opportunity to fix the problem. For most problems that are not of an emergency status, 30 days is reasonable. While there is no definitive set of circumstances under the law that are considered emergency versus not, I'd consider noise, A/C, fan, and probably the even the oven to not be an emergency. On the other hand, a broken toilet (if it's the only one in the apartment) and a broken sink drain (depending on the issue - water going everywhere?), could be of an emergency status such that I would expect them to be fixed within 24 hours.

The botXXXXX XXXXXne is this: The legislature does not define when a problem is a breach of contract, and when it's a minor issue that the landlord can fix over a longer period of time. You'll have to use your own best judgment. If you vacate the apartment without the landlord's permission, and if the landlord then sues you for unpaid rent, then you'll have to convince a judge that the landlord's inaction to resolve the issues constituted a material breach. Therefore, you'll want to have as much evidence as possible, such as copies of the written complaints (with dates), copies of police reports, pictures of broken items, witness testimony if possible, and any other evidence that indicates that living in the apartment was miserable because of the landlord's inaction. As you can see, you'll need to build your case now before you vacate.

Have I satisfactorily addressed your concerns? If not, then feel free to let me know, as I will be happy to clarify my answer or help with your follow-up questions. In the meantime, please remember to click the green accept button so that I will receive credit and compensation for my time (doing so does not end our discussion). Positive feedback is always appreciated as well. Thank you and good luck!
TJ, Esq.
TJ, Esq., Attorney
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 12,474
Experience: JD, MBA
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