Rules Regarding Air Conditioning in Rental Units
Renting a home or apartment can be a great way to save some money in Northridge. During hot California summers, though, you may wonder what would happen if your unit’s air conditioner stopped working. Since you don’t own the unit, you aren’t technically responsible for repairing or maintaining the air conditioner. However, this leaves the repair timeline up to your landlord. To understand how long you might have to wait to enjoy cool air again, check out this guide from Kahn Air Conditioning.
Time to Act
Laws regarding a landlord’s obligations to repair air conditioners vary from state to state. In California, if your unit has an air conditioner and it stops working, your landlord has 30 days to get it working again. There aren’t specific stipulations about who has to perform the work, just that the work needs to be completed in 30 days or less. If this doesn’t happen, the tenant can begin proceedings against their landlord. It’s important to note that initiating these proceedings may still not mean immediate relief since a landlord can file an appeal.
One major caveat that Kahn Air Conditioning wants you to understand is that landlords are not required to provide air conditioning for tenants under California law. The only comfort measure that a landlord must provide is “proper ventilation”. This can be something as simple as a window that opens far enough to provide decent airflow. Therefore, if you move into an apartment or rental home and discover that the unit doesn’t have an air conditioner, you may end up needing to provide an air conditioner yourself since your landlord is not legally bound to do so.
Know Before You Go
The best way to stay cool without going to a lot of work is to know what you’re getting into before you sign a lease on a particular unit. The paperwork for every property should stipulate whether or not the landlord will provide an air conditioner. In addition, the lease should include information about the expected timeline for repair if a problem occurs. If you don’t find any language regarding an air conditioner unit in your lease, Kahn Air Conditioning strongly encourages you to press the issue. This will ensure you know what to expect when moving into a new rental unit.
Some Good News
Although it might seem as though tenants are powerless when it comes to air conditioning, the good news is that most landlords work hard to compete for your money. This means that they need to provide attractive units with competitive amenities like air conditioning. Therefore, while you may come across some dishonest landlords when you’re looking at units with low monthly rents, the average renter won’t ever come across a rental unit without an air conditioner. Even under normal circumstances, though, it’s still important to do your homework and flesh out the details of what your landlord will cover when it comes to the costs of keeping your unit cool.
Working on a Compromise
In some cases, your landlord may depend on a maintenance person to perform repairs to your air conditioner. If this individual has a lot of properties to work on, it may take a while to get your unit fixed. If that happens to you, you may be able to work out a deal with your landlord to have an HVAC contractor come take a look at your air conditioner instead of waiting for the maintenance person. While you’ll probably have to pay some money yourself, it can greatly reduce the amount of time it takes to enjoy cool air again. Since every landlord and rental unit is different, it is important to check with your landlord before hiring anyone to do work on your air conditioner.
Ready to Help
At Kahn Air Conditioning, we’re ready to help, whether you’re a homeowner, renter, or landlord in West Hills or throughout Southern California. We offer air conditioner repair, furnace maintenance, and HVAC installation. Plus, we can install generators to keep the lights on when the power goes out, smart home devices to help make your life easier, and air purifiers to help keep you and your family healthy. For over 60 years, we have been working hard to bring a smile to our customers’ faces. Thanks to our integrity and professionalism, we’ve earned the Angie’s List Super Service Award and a Carrier President’s Award. Plus, we continually receive five-star reviews from our customers. To learn more about staying cool in a rental unit, contact us at Kahn Air Conditioning today.