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Can I withhold part of the rent because (once again) the hallway carpet is waterlogged due to flooding under the house?

Mill Valley, CA |

For the fourth year in a row, water runoff during the rainy season floods the ground under the house I rent. My landlord has tried many solutions (trenches, extra pumps) each winter to no avail. We always hope it won't happen again. Meanwhile after the latest big storm, my hallway carpet is again soggy from the water beneath the house. While it is not dangerous, it's very depressing to step on and around the wet patches of carpet. They have decided to sell the place and have given me one month's notice to move. Of course, I am packing now. Do I have to pay the full month's rent? Can they withhold my $500 deposit if I do?

Attorney Answers 2


  1. Since you have lived there for over a year you are entitled to a 60 day notice instead of the usual 30, see California Civil Code section 1946.1(b).

    As far as rent you are responsible for each day you are in possession of the residence. To determine that amount divide your monthly rent by 30 then multiply by the number of days you were in possession.

    Deductions from your security deposit should only be made to repair damage you caused to the residence. See Civil Code 1950.5.

    -Michael R. Juarez Law Office of Juarez and Schaeffer PO Box 16216 San Diego, CA 92105 (619) 804-4327 www.jslaw.org Mike@jslaw.org This posting is provided for “information purposes” only and should not be relied upon as "legal advice." Nothing transmitted from this posting constitutes the establishment of an attorney-client relationship. Applicability of the legal principles discussed here may differ substantially in individual situations or in different jurisdictions.


  2. Woah, woah, woah. I dont know where to start. If you've been there four years, 30 days notice doesn't cut it. Furthermore, the eviction is retaliatory, per se. Furthermore, you are suffering uninhabitable conditions with wet carpet and no doubt mold. Leaving is not a bad idea considering but I am very interested in speaking with you about all of the facts during your tenancy. I'm in Santa Rosa.

    Responses to Avvo questions are based on a general discussion of the law and in no way constitute legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is created, and you should not take or fail to take actions based on my answers. Consult an attorney in your area. Time is often of the essence. Act quickly!

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