I just moved into a 2bedroom 2bath apartment in San Francisco California. Upon moving in I found out the shower in one of the bathrooms never gets hot water. I immediately connacted the landlord who sent out a maintenance person who verified it was not working and said they'd call their plumber.

It's now been 47days and there's been no action.

I contacted them at 44days and they said they had to order some part and it should be here soon.

Okay, fine, but the lease is for a 2bd 2ba apartment, not for a 2bd 1.5ba. I feel like I'm being stolen from.

The landlord's excuse is of course they are waiting for the part and that since I have a 2nd bathroom there's no big deal. From that point of view they could just claim the part will take a year and never fix it.

My own searches all lead to things about habitabilty and health codes and in that setting fixes are required in 30 days but this arguably isn't a habitabiliy/health code issue.

Even if they manage to fix it soon, what legal resource do I have for not getting what I'm paying for what is now 47days? Can I deduct rent? Terminate the lease for their breach? Nothing?

  • Page 51 of the California Tenants' Guide implies that your remedies in this situations that do not affect the apartment's habitability are largely determined by the terms of your rental agreement and any local ordinances. Just saying that you're in California might not be enough information to answer the question definitively. Sep 26, 2022 at 20:57
  • I posted that I'm in San Francisco California in the question if that narrows it down. Are apartments special when it comes to contracts (leases)? At what point have they not provided what they claimed to be offering?
    – gman
    Sep 26, 2022 at 21:17
  • Sorry, I missed the SF location. As far as whether leases are a special kind of contract: I believe you always have the option to sue for damages in small claims court, as you would for any other contract. But for a "normal" contract, you aren't entitled to unilaterally withhold payment or terminate the contract early unless the contract specifically lays out a way to do this. So in that sense, there does need to be "special" law surrounding leases if you want to pursue the options you're contemplating. Sep 26, 2022 at 23:29


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