I have recently moved into a new apartment. The lease is a private one between me and the owner (not a larger corporation). I viewed the unit in May and, come the end of the summer and a series of remodeling/construction, I moved in permanently.

I was moved in for less than 24 hours when I noticed some construction mistakes. Some examples include: blocked outlets, reversed doorknobs (lock on wrong side), and doors that do not shut all the way. The most inconvenient was some incorrect wiring that prevented the cable operator I called from installing internet.

I contacted my landlord about these issues and he said he would take a look and fix them ASAP. It has now been a week and he has not, to my knowledge, even examined the issues in person or done anything to go about correcting these mistakes.

What legal recourse do I have, if any, against my landlord? I know that tenants have a right to sue for damages or deduct the cost of repairs from monthly rent but these damages are fairly minor and do not necessarily render the apartment uninhabitable. However, it is frustrating that the faulty wiring prevents internet hookup (which, let's be honest, is a basic quality of life these days).

  • 1
    " tenants have a right ... to deduct the cost of repairs from monthly rent" you can certainly propose and come to agreement in this regard. Unilaterally by tenant is location specific. Its not universal.
    – user662852
    Aug 18, 2016 at 23:27
  • Where do you live ?
    – davidgo
    Aug 19, 2016 at 3:12
  • I live in the USA. Texas to be more precise.
    – user8834
    Aug 19, 2016 at 4:47

1 Answer 1


You don't specify a jurisdiction, but as a general rule there is no legally recognized right to convenient internet access, which might override terms of a lease, not even in Seattle. (Lease terms -- or their lack -- can't abridge legal rights). If the lease specifically indicates that the apartment comes with wiring suitable for internet connection, then you have a case, but I assume the lease doesn't say that. The details of the warranty of habitality vary from state to state, e.g. those for Colorado and for Washington. This may be a complete list for the US, and none indicate that cable is mandatory. So there is no legal recourse.

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