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May asked in Politics & GovernmentLaw & Ethics · 10 years ago

renting, need legal advice.?

Thanks for your help. I live in the state of Massachusetts.

I signed an apartment lease for the first of the month and gave first and last month's rent in advance. My landlord told me the other tenants were hiring a professional cleaner before they left and that was part of the agreement before I would move in. As you can imagine they did not hire a professional cleaner and my landlord eventually got a professional cleaning service meaning we could not move in until the third week of the month even though I paid for the entire month.

When we got in the walls were filthy and there were open electrical outlets with exposed electric work and we had to repaint and repair it all. Two days later our landlord informs us that the tenants upstairs have bedbugs and that our unit would be receiving a spray every three weeks and that we should not unpack and find alternative housing for my dog! The infested unit residents dragged their mattress and belongings down the stairs, through the hall, and plopped everything on our front porch/yard.

Already upset, I begged the landlord to let me out of the lease and he said not unless you find another tenant to take your place (which is understandable). I put the apartment listing on the market myself and showed the place to 10 prospective tenants, with 3 good applications resulting from that. I scanned and emailed the apps to my landlord and he decided only one applicant would be a good choice (the older single man as opposed to the two smaller families) but then he proceeded to stall to call him. He next told me the man should not take the apartment until after my unit had finished being sprayed. I told him the man needed the place for the first of the month and would therefore have to be there for the last spray, He emailed me saying I should "reel him (the potential applicant) in tactfully" about our "pest prevention situation" basically meaning he wanted me to bend the truth about the situation to the potential applicant. I said that's not my job, I'm the tenant and I am not going to "reel anyone in" the way he probably reeled me in. After a few days of this nonsense the potential applicant decided to sign another lease because he was tired of waiting!

I asked him if he would consider the other two applicants as tenants and he never responded. I was so upset and exhausted and decided to show the apartment again and lo and behold a rat ran into the kitchen and escaped under the oven! I immediately sent a notice to my landlord telling him about the rat and asking him how he wants me to kill it and he never responded.

I have done everything in my power to get this unit rented out. I am not comfortable staying here, I cannot sleep, and I am just so creeped out. I need to know if anything he did was against the law. I am thinking about just leaving this place and I know he will take me to court to sue me for the rest of the rent and I need to know if my case has any merit.

Thank you for your help.

5 Answers

  • 10 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    You rented the apartment and paid first and last months rent however the landlord was supposed to have the place professionally cleaned in time for you to move in. It wasn't ready when you were supposed to move in so therefore he is in default. Since he misrepresented the apartment, I don't know why he put it on you to try to rent it out. Not to mention he had to have known about the bedbug thing and did not disclose that information. Then a rat! He's the rat that's running throught he apartment. He did reel you in but it's not your fault Get as far away from that place as you can. I know you are out money but do you really want to live in a bedbug and rat infested apartment? Take the loss for now and take that slumlord to court. Who in their right mind would rent a place infested with bedbugs and rodents? Relive me, you wouldn't be happy their anyway. This was just the beginning of a terrible situation. Who knows what else is lurking in that place.

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  • spag
    Lv 4
    10 years ago

    Provided the details you provided are accurate, I would immediately move out and demand full restitution and reimbursement for any paint you purchased and outlets covers you purchased. Let them know you want a full refund of all monies exchanged when you moved into the uninhabitable apartment. hey will probably laugh up to the point they are served with a subpoena to show up in court because you have filed a small claims action against them. Keep good records.

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  • Anonymous
    10 years ago

    You have every legal right to break the lease based upon the landlords non performance, you may have to forfeit your deposit until you sue for it but you have the right to move and he would be unable to sue you for the balance of the lease, make sure you are documenting everything.

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  • silky1
    Lv 7
    10 years ago

    Move out and deal with the consequences later. If he decides to sue you then let him. In this case he'd loose and loose big time.

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  • 4 years ago

    Go at once list all the mess and broken furniture and insist that the agents come and make an inventory which you should check carefully if they refuse ask for the owners name and telephone number let him or her know what is happening.

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