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Can a Florida real estate attorney assist renters who have air conditioning concerns?

Florida – September 6, 2022

Under Florida law, property owners are not required to provide or maintain air conditioning. A bill died in March 2022 regarding the responsibility of a Florida landlord to provide tenants with working air conditioning.  Orlando real estate lawyers are knowledgeable about the constant changes to real estate landlord/tenant law and the market trends of a specific area, and they can assist tenants with their basic rights against any potential wrongdoing by property owners within the framework of the law and the lease agreement between the parties.  It is prudent for renters to have a lawyer review their lease before signing to make certain that the issue of air conditioning is included in specific language.

Tenant’s obligations.

Beyond paying rent in a timely manner and not causing excessive property damage, Florida tenants are responsible for:

  • Maintaining the unit in safe, habitable condition,
  • Keeping their part of the unit clean and sanitary including garbage removal,
  • Keeping all dwelling fixtures, such as plumbing and electrical, clean, sanitary, and using them in a reasonable manner,
  • Not unreasonably disturbing neighbors,
  • Not destroying or damaging any part of the premises.

Tenants who are not afforded a healthy and safe living situation should contact a Florida real estate attorney to review their rights and seek assistance to correct any negative behaviors by property owners.  One might argue that living with malfunctioning air conditioning units could be unhealthy for tenants in Florida’s hot weather.

Landlord’s obligations.

Florida property owners are responsible for always maintaining a rented dwelling during tenancy.  A property owner shall:

  • Comply with the requirements of applicable building, housing, and health codes,
  • Maintain the roof, internal and external doors, floors and stairways, hallways, porches and patios, exterior walls, foundations, and other structural components of a rented space in good repair.
  • Maintain plumbing in reasonable working order,
  • Unless otherwise agreed to in writing, when leasing a single-family unit or duplex, a property owner shall make reasonable provisions for extermination of pests (rats, mice, roaches, ants, termites, and bedbugs) and shall provide locks and keys, garbage removal, running water, and smoke detection devices.

Disputes between tenant and owner.

Tenants and property owners may not always agree on what is considered a decent housing space, so it is important for either party to understand the requirements of each based on the language of the lease agreement.  Landlord-tenant attorneys said renters should ask for air conditioning maintenance to added to their leases before they sign.

Hire a lawyer to assist with disputes.

Sometimes it is best to have an objective knowledgeable party when disagreements occur between tenants and owners for payment of big-ticket items such as appliances, plumbing, and HVAC malfunction.  An Orlando real estate attorney can review potential problems that may arise with tenants and landlords if these requirements are not spelled out in the language of a lease agreement between the parties regarding responsibilities to fix or purchase appliances, plumbing and HVAC units for a rented property.

Legal Counsel, P.A.

189 S. Orange Ave., Ste. 1800
Orlando, Florida  32801

Phone: 407-982-4321

Sources.

  1. https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2022/819/BillText/Filed/PDF
  2. Florida does not require landlords to provide, maintain air conditioning (wflx.com)
  3. Statutes & Constitution :View Statutes : Online Sunshine (state.fl.us)
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