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Landlord's responsiblity concerning extreme utility bills due to lack of insulation

 
 
Reply Thu 16 Jul, 2009 12:48 pm
We have spent two winters in this house. The first winter we thought the bills were high due to the fact that we didn't put plastic on the windows (all brand new windows). The second winter we find out in February that the roof as no insulation in it. We even had ice build up on the roof so bad that it started to pour inside the house when the heat inside melted it. Our land lord says that if he has to put money into the house he'll just sell it which seems like a threat. He even had the nerve to raise our rent at the end of our old lease and still hasn't given us a new one. We feel stuck here because we don't have the best credit and no one in our area is renting. My last winter utility bill was 463.00 and that was in a mild month. Can anyone tell me what his responsibility would be concerning my huge bills?
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Type: Question • Score: 2 • Views: 2,719 • Replies: 12
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sammy1972
 
  1  
Reply Thu 16 Jul, 2009 12:49 pm
@sammy1972,
Just to add: He still hasn't fixed the ceiling and the wall where the water came in and he hasn't bothered to get insulation.
Cycloptichorn
 
  2  
Reply Thu 16 Jul, 2009 12:50 pm
What state are you in? It's important, b/c landlord laws differ.

You might also want to look into heated blankets - we use them and it saves quite a bit of money over trying to heat the entire place.

Cycloptichorn
Mame
 
  2  
Reply Thu 16 Jul, 2009 12:51 pm
@sammy1972,
Do you have a state rentalsman agency you could contact? I would expect it'd differ from city to city or state to state. That would be the best advice I could give you.
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Mame
 
  2  
Reply Thu 16 Jul, 2009 12:52 pm
@Cycloptichorn,
The blankets won't do much for the melting ice, though. I'd contact the government and see what's what, but without a lease, I'd worry that he'd evict me (if that's possible).
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sammy1972
 
  1  
Reply Thu 16 Jul, 2009 12:54 pm
@Cycloptichorn,
I live in New York.
Cycloptichorn
 
  2  
Reply Thu 16 Jul, 2009 01:02 pm
@sammy1972,
Start here -

http://www.rentlaw.com/newyorkrentlaw.htm

You may have a local rent board in your city or county, look there as well.

Good luck
Cycloptichorn
0 Replies
 
gungasnake
 
  0  
Reply Thu 16 Jul, 2009 01:39 pm
@sammy1972,
Unless the landlord has owned the thing since it was built he's not the person in the picture who's liable for anything. You need to move.
0 Replies
 
NickFun
 
  2  
Reply Thu 16 Jul, 2009 01:56 pm
Gunga where the hell did you get that? He's liable for making the place habitable which, with leaky roof and no insulation, it is not. Especially in NY. Get a building inspector out there right away!
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sammy1972
 
  1  
Reply Thu 16 Jul, 2009 02:18 pm
Thanks to all of the informative comments. I guess I finally just got fed up with the whole "if I have to repair anything, your gone" kinda attitude. keep'em coming though. I would like to know if he can be held responsible for part of the utility bill as well since he's known about the problem at the time he purchased the house. He had a new roof put on (which he includes in our rent), but declined the insulation.
Cycloptichorn
 
  2  
Reply Thu 16 Jul, 2009 03:20 pm
@sammy1972,
sammy1972 wrote:

Thanks to all of the informative comments. I guess I finally just got fed up with the whole "if I have to repair anything, your gone" kinda attitude. keep'em coming though. I would like to know if he can be held responsible for part of the utility bill as well since he's known about the problem at the time he purchased the house. He had a new roof put on (which he includes in our rent), but declined the insulation.


Wouldn't hold my breath on that one. I find it to be highly unlikely that any court would find your landlord responsible for your high heating costs - though you could argue that the house is 'unlivable' and withhold future rent, maybe.

Also,

Quote:
Our land lord says that if he has to put money into the house he'll just sell it which seems like a threat.


This is probably an empty threat. He's not going to up and sell in the middle of the shittiest housing market in forever, out of a fit of pique; he simply doesn't want to pay anything he doesn't have to to keep the house up. It's understandable, and what more, you aren't forcing him to pay. Take action and force him to pay. Alternatively, since you aren't on a new lease, keep shopping around for a new place, a better one; this likely isn't going to end happily for you no matter how right you are.

Cycloptichorn
0 Replies
 
sullyfish6
 
  2  
Reply Thu 16 Jul, 2009 04:43 pm
Come to Michigan. Even with bad credit you can rent most homes, heck, even find a cheap repo. And there's all kinds of help to get you into a house.


0 Replies
 
sammy1972
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Jul, 2009 02:21 pm
Thanks guys.. Hey, don't you wish everyone had a "do over" button..lol you've all been helpful. Have a great weekend.
0 Replies
 
 

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