My girlfriend and I moved into our apartment in July signing a one year lease. We moved into a 24 unit condo complex rented from one owner(husband and wife). Everything was fine until about 3 and 1/2 weeks ago when we came home to a flood. About 85% of the carpet was damaged and had to come up along with a 6X6 hole in the ceiling. We live on the first floor so we see the floor of the people above us. Also it took out all working smoke detectors. Luckily nothing of ours was damaged. Come to find out there was a contractor working on the roof and they didn’t have a building permit.
We called our landlord upon discovering the problem and he came over in the middle of the night and set up machines to dry the plywood floor and a dehumidifier which ran for 4 days(we pay all our own utilities) and the carpet was gone within a week leaving us having to wear shoes in the majority of the apartment at all times so we don’t get staples in our feet(this really annoys us).
Also we had some water get into the fuse box and when we started to use the electric heat it started smoking. The landlord did come over and fix this but we are very worried about this happening again since we have no working smoke detectors.
The ceiling is being repaired by the management company as I write this. We still have no carpet and I believe our landlord is taking the approach of waiting and seeing what these people do before repairing it through his insurance company or himself. I feel that the carpet should go in at the same time as the ceiling and things are not moving fast enough. My landlord is a really nice guy and I don’t want to burn any bridges by asking him to move things along.
So here is my question after my novel: My girlfriend and I are both frustrated with the speed that this is moving. We are also paying a lot of money for an apartment that is currently not worth it. The flood will be a month ago on Saturday. We have a standard lease where if the landlord does not keep up the apartment the lease can be broken. He has kept in very good touch with us, but I feel like that doesn’t put a carpet down for us or bring the apartment up to the value that we pay. My question – is there a certain amount of time where we can void our lease if this place is not brought up to standards? For example if things aren’t fixed by the end of December can we move out?
I know laws are on the tenant’s side in most states. I would like to settle this peacefully since he is a really nice guy, but have to look out for our happiness. We also do not want to lose our security deposit as well. Thanks in advance everyone.