STUDENT LEGAL SERVICES
The relationship between landlord and tenant is ideally friendly. Usually, the tenant makes a verbal request that repairs be made and the landlord responds quickly. However, sometimes problems can occur in this process. The following information is for the use of those tenants who have decided that rent escrowing is the only way their landlord will make the necessary repairs.
The following are the necessary steps you need to take to escrow your rent.
Step 1 : Define Your Problem
Step 2 : Notice to Remedy Conditions
Step 3 : Request an Inspection
Step 4 : Depositing Your Rent in Escrow
Step 5 : Going to Court
|Step 1: Define Your Problem|
Your landlord has many obligations under the law and your lease. Problems which you have the right to demand be solved by your landlord are of several types. Your landlord is required to maintain the property in a fit, habitable, safe and sanitary condition. Your landlord must maintain the property , as required by applicable building, housing,health and safety codes. Your landlord must adhere to all requirements of your lease.
Some Examples of Problems:
|Step 2: Notice to remedy conditions|
You must give your landlord a written "Notice to Remedy Conditions." The written notice must be delivered to your landlord at least 30 days before you put any rent into and escrow. If you pay your rent in person, you may hand deliver the original "Notice to Remedy Conditions" when youpay your rent to your landlord. It would be wise to have a witness there when you do this. If you pay your rent by mail, send it Certified Mail--Return Receipt Requested. Several days after mailing the Notice you will receive the receipt in the mail. Do not lose it! It is your proof that you sent the notice and your landlord received it.
The "Notice to Remedy Conditions" informs your landlord of what things need to be done. It must be clear and specific. It must have enough detail so that the landlord and the court will be able to understand exactly when you are complaining about.
|Step 3: Request and Inspection- Gather and Document Your Evidence|
Photograph or video tape any of the problems that you have given "Notice" on. Try to keep a record of the date you took this picture or video. Problems that do not photograph or video tape well, such as inefficient heat, electrical outlets that do not work, or no water pressure, are proven with witnesses. Have a friend, eighteen or older witness the problem.
Both types of problems should be reported to an appropriate government agency. If you request an inspection by Wood County Health Department- (419)352-8402, you will be able to obtain a report from them which will be valuable to prove existence of the problem you notified your landlord about.
If you live in Bowling Green contact Wood County Health District at (419) 352-8402.
|Step 4: Depositing Your Rent In Escrow|
|Step 5: Going to Court|
Your landlord may ask the court to release your rent from escrow. Your landlord will be required to prove to the Court that the money should be released; all you have to show the Court is that the repairs have not been made. There are a limited number of reasons that the court will accept as sufficient to justify giving your deposited rent money to your landlord.
If you have an attorney, you are all set. If you do not have an attorney, you can call us at 372-2951.