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Hallandale Landlord-Tenant Attorney
Dealing with landlords is often one of the most stressful relationships someone can have. After all, a landlord can control where you live and they can make it either a pleasant experience or a miserable one. As a tenant’s rights lawyer, Larry Tolchinsky has for over 20 years helped Florida residential tenants deal with abusive landlords.
Larry believes it is unfair for a landlord to use his or her power to take advantage of someone who simply needs a place to live. Larry’s goal is to level the playing field.
The good news is, in many landlord tenant disputes, Larry is able to represent his client without the client paying an attorney fee unless Larry is successful in winning their case. Those cases generally include repair issues, security deposit claims and mold infestation.
Landlord’s Duty to Make Repairs
According to Florida Statute 83.51, a landlord has an obligation and responsibility to maintain the premises it rents to tenants. The landlord’s obligations for maintaining a home depends on the type of rental unit.
For instance, for a single-family home or duplex, a landlord must follow the requirements of State, County, City and all other building, housing and health codes. When there are no codes, then a landlord must maintain certain parts of the home in good working condition, including the plumbing, roof, windows, screens, floors, steps, and “all other structural components in good repair and capable of resisting normal forces and loads.”
If the home being rented is an apartment, at all times during the relationship between the landlord and tenant, the landlord must also comply with the applicable housing codes and:
However, these statutory requirements do not mean that a landlord is required to pay for utilities, water, or garbage removal.
A good idea if you are having a problem with your landlord because he or she won’t make any repairs or adhere to the requirements above is to have a housing code inspection. A city or county inspector will inspect your home and will write a report stating any violations that may exist. This report can be helpful especially if you have to go to court to compel your landlord to improve your living conditions.
Most of the residential tenant mold cases Larry handles involves landlords failing to disclose to their tenant that the rental property has a mold infestation. In these cases, a tenant may be able to terminate their lease and collect damages based upon the landlord’s fraudulent concealment.
Another popular case involving mold is where a tenant reports mold to the landlord and the landlord neglects his or her duty to remedy or repair the issue or argues that the tenant caused the mold. In these instances, the tenant will want to move out, withhold rent and/or have the landlord remediate the mold from the property. In some instances, a personal injury claim may be warranted.
Security Deposit Disputes
In Larry’s experience, the most common landlord tenant disputes are where a landlord makes a claim against a tenant’s security deposit for unjustified reasons, including: excessive wear and tear claims, broken appliances, carpet cleaning, and the like.
Fortunately, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development provides some guidance on the definition of normal wear and tear which includes cracked paint, rusty shower rod, loose grouting and bathroom tiles, and slightly torn or faded wallpaper (among others).
If you are facing a landlord who won’t return your security deposit, is failing to make repairs for conditions caused by mold, is attempting to illegally or wrongfully evict you, or has been negligent, then call Larry Tolchinsky to help you and protect your rights as a tenant in Florida.
Larry will explain your rights under the Florida Residential Landlord and Tenant Act which applies to the rental of a dwelling unit or any other structure that is rented for use as a home or place where someone sleeps (See Florida Statute 83.40-83.683)
Larry represents clients in Landlord-Tenant Disputes related to:
**Note: These links will take you to our Florida Real Estate Law Blog**
Landlord – Tenant Blog Posts of Interest (from our real estate blog):
If you require the help of an experienced Broward County landlord-tenant lawyer, contact Larry Tolchinsky today for a free consultation.
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Contact Larry Tolchinsky to find out how he can help you. You can contact him by phone at 954-458-8655 or by e-mail through this web site to schedule an appointment and learn more about Florida Landlord-Tenant Law. He offers a free initial consultation.
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