Am I obligated to pay my full rent or can I ask for it to be prorated if I had to leave my apartment for a time due to a neighbor?

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Am I obligated to pay my full rent or can I ask for it to be prorated if I had to leave my apartment for a time due to a neighbor?

My neighbor’s boyfriend left her apartment intoxicated and carrying a rifle and axe. He returned after he was let out of jail. I went to stay with family because I did not feel safe. The situation was not addressed until 6 days later. He was told not to come back, she was asked to leave. I refused to return until she is gone. Can I demand my rent be prorated for the time I could not be in my place? If I break my lease, they say I have to give a 30 day notice and pay 2 months.

Asked on July 3, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Georgia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

A landlord is not responsible for the tortious (something you could sue over) or criminal activities of other tenants, their families, or their guests--and certainly not of other people who are non-tenants (if the neighor is not a tenant of this landlord). The fact that the neighbor's boyfriend posed a threat and was arrested is simply not the landlord's responsibility--unless the landlord is the neighbor to which you are referring--and so the boyfriend's action does not provide grounds for a rent reduction or rebate, or to terminate your lease without penalty  except as is set out  in the lease itself (i.e. by providing proper notice and paying any amounts due).


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