If I moved into an apartment recently and found out that it’s infested with fleas, is there anything I can do as far as recovering any losses due to the pest problem?

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If I moved into an apartment recently and found out that it’s infested with fleas, is there anything I can do as far as recovering any losses due to the pest problem?

I moved into an apartment and found out that it was infested with fleas a few days after living there. We already moved in all our stuff, so a lot of the things have probably been contaminated.

Asked on September 19, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

All landlords have the obligation to provide rentals that are "fit for their intended purpose" (this is called the implied warranty of habitability). When a landlord fails to do so, such as through a pest infestation, the tenant may be entitled to recover his or her costs or losses caused by the infestation--it depends on the circumstances (for example, did the prior tenant let the landlord know there was a problem, so the landlord should have taken action; without knowlege, the landlord did nothing wrong). Bear in mind, however, that if the landlord refuses to reimburse you your pest-related costs, you'd have to sue to recover them, which may or may not be worthwhile.


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