Investment Property Mortgage Loans
AmerUSA.net

 Search       Members   Calendar   Help   Home 
Search by username
Not logged in - Login | Register 

Read --> American Landlord: Everything U Need to Know... about Property Management

Read --> American Landlord Law: Everything U Need to Know... about Landlord-Tenant Laws

Read --> American Tenant: Everything U Need to Know... about Your Rights as a Renter

rats in apartment
 Moderated by: Admin  
 New Topic   Reply   Print 
AuthorPost
luisg
Member
 

Joined: Wed Sep 12th, 2007
Location:  
Posts: 2
Status:  Offline
 Posted: Thu Sep 13th, 2007 03:35 pm
 Quote  Reply 
Hi!
Thanks for your advice
Actually I did submit a letter to her asking her to clean the apartment and get rid of the rats. Her response (on writting) was that the apartment had been cleaned before I moved in and that she would get me some rat poison for me to put out and she would send her handyman to look for and fix the rat holes. This was two weeks ago, of course nothing has been done. In her response she says that she actually hired some company to have my carpets professionally shampooed. When I vacuumed the place I got lots of dirt out of it. I still have that dirt in the vacuum. I took some pictures before I finished cleaning, but they aren't any good, you can't really tell what you are looking at. So, I decided not to finish cleaning the kitchen so it is partially as I got it. Since I started poisoning the rats (about 4 1/2 weeks) I've found four dead. I took a picture of one of them before getting rid of it. But I'm pretty sure that there are more than 4. The sounds in the attic seem to stop for 1-2 days and then come back. And the poison also looks untouched for 2-3 days and then it looks like something has been eating from it. So, I think that somehow they are maybe getting in and out.
Now I was thinking, since the carpets were obviously not shampooed and she affirms that she got a professional company to do it, can I ask for a copy of the receipt?
There was a part of the lease where I listed the things that were wrong with the apartment when I moved in (except for the rats, I didn't know about them yet). I gave this to her and she gave me a copy, however she didn't sing it.
I did contact the Health Department but they told me that they can't do anything because the problem exist within my apartment.
I also contacted one legal aide group online (yesterday), but haven't heard back from them. I don't know how long it will take for them to reply, I think I'll just go talk to them in person.
I'll try the building inspector.
Thanks a lot!

OH landlord
Member
 

Joined: Wed Sep 12th, 2007
Location:  
Posts: 506
Status:  Offline
 Posted: Thu Sep 13th, 2007 12:03 am
 Quote  Reply 
Ok, you made a mistake in taking the place without making sure it was clean before you moved in.  We all make mistakes.  This is what you need to do.  Write a repair request asking for an exterminator to clear the entire house (attic included) of rats.  Keep a copy for yourself.  Send this to the LL by certified mail, return receipt requested.  This proves you made the request and that she received the request.  (You need to start a paper trail to be able to prove she is not meeting her obligations.)  If she fails to respond and do this within a reasonable amount of time, you may be able to have the place exterminated yourself and subtract the cost from the rent.  (See LA Civil Code Ann. art. 2694 for details before you do this.)

Also while you are waiting for her response, I would contact the health department.  Let them know that you have rats in the place and ask them to come and inspect.  (Don't clean up the rat dropping before they come.  Let them see just what you are seeing and hearing.)  If they find evidence of them, they may cite the owner of the property and force them to handle the problem. If the health department won't come, try the building inspector for the city.

Lastly, although you can't afford an attorney, you can still get one.  Look for free Legal Aide services or a Tenant Advocacy Group in your area.  Many large metro areas like yours have one.  The local public library can assist you in finding these resources.  They will assist you in getting this problem resolved.

One other thing, since your unit was in poor condition when you moved in, you need to do something to document that.  It is too late to take pictures showing what your unit looked like when you moved in.  But you can send a letter to the LL stating what was wrong with the unit when you took occupancy.  Give as many details as possible.  Let her know that you had to do the cleaning since she never sent the cleaning lady as she had promised.  Get statements from anyone who helped you move in who saw what it looked like.  Keep copies of everything!  This won't exactly prove that the place was dirty when you got it, but it will help.  I have the feeling when you move out, she isn't going to want to return your deposit to you easily.  You need to do all you can to protect yourself.  And from now on, send any communication to her in writing.  No more calls.  Good luck.

Last edited on Thu Sep 13th, 2007 12:05 am by OH landlord

luisg
Member
 

Joined: Wed Sep 12th, 2007
Location:  
Posts: 2
Status:  Offline
 Posted: Wed Sep 12th, 2007 06:22 pm
 Quote  Reply 
I'm an international student and recently moved to Baton Rouge, LA to attend LSU. Before I moved to BR I contacted an ad online about an apartment for rent. At that time the landlord assured me that the aparment was clean and ready for me to move in. When I arrived to BR, the landlord took me to see the apartment. It wasn't clean and told her. She said that her cleaning lady was gonna come that same day, but since I was feeling pretty ill and didn't have another place to go she said that I could move in and that she was gonna have her cleaning lady call me to set a time for her to come and clean the apartment. Since that didn't happen I went to talk to her and she told me that the apartment had already been cleaned before I moved in! So, I decided to just go ahead and clean my self. When I started cleaning I found several pieces of rat droppings inside one of the kitchen counters. I told her about this and about the noises I heard coming from the attic, and she promised to take care of it, but 5 weeks later she hasn't done anything. I went ahead and got some poison to get rid of the rats, but I don't have access to the attic so I can only put the poison out in the apartment floor. Plus, there must be a way for the rats to get in and around the apartment, some kind of hole they made and that needs to be repaired. I told her about all this 5 weeks ago and she still hasn't done anything. She even told me that if I wanted to call an exterminator I could go ahead and do so, but she is not gonna pay for it!!! I can't afford an exterminator, neither can I afford a lawyer or to break the lease. I understand it is her obligation to make sure that the apartment is clean and in livable condition before renting it out. I'm pretty sure she knew about the rats when she rented the apartment out to me. She is clearly abusing of my situation since she knows that I'm an international student on a scholarship and so can't afford a lawyer, she knows that I don't know anyone here and  that I don't have another place to go. I have talked to several people I contacted through the International Student office at LSU, but the only thing they've told me is to get a lawyer!!! I can't afford one!!! I have tried to make the place livable as far as I can, but there isn't much I can do about the rats in the attic or to fix the rat holes. I don't know what else to do and I'm being forced to continue living in an unhealthy situation. If you can give any advice I would greatly appreciate it.

Thanks!

 


 Current time is 01:55 am



                         
 
 
This site Copyright © 2003 by US Landlord. All rights reserved.