Indiana new law (by Hoosier [IN]) Mar 7, 2023 11:29 PM|
Indiana new law (by Moshe [CA]) Mar 8, 2023 12:16 AM
Indiana new law (by Rick [IN]) Mar 8, 2023 5:49 AM
Indiana new law (by Bonanza [NC]) Mar 8, 2023 6:40 AM
Indiana new law (by Ray-N-Pa [PA]) Mar 8, 2023 7:02 AM
Indiana new law (by Vee [OH]) Mar 8, 2023 7:14 AM
Indiana new law (by Hollis [MA]) Mar 8, 2023 7:55 AM
Indiana new law (by WMH [NC]) Mar 8, 2023 8:35 AM
Indiana new law (by Ray-N-Pa [PA]) Mar 8, 2023 9:25 AM
Indiana new law (by Oregon Woodsmoke [ID]) Mar 8, 2023 10:24 AM
Indiana new law (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Mar 8, 2023 11:09 AM
Indiana new law (by S i d [MO]) Mar 8, 2023 11:21 AM
Indiana new law (by MikeA [TX]) Mar 8, 2023 12:16 PM
Indiana new law (by S i d [MO]) Mar 8, 2023 3:09 PM
Indiana new law (by John... [MI]) Mar 8, 2023 6:11 PM
Indiana new law (by Vee [OH]) Mar 8, 2023 6:33 PM
Indiana new law (by MikeA [TX]) Mar 8, 2023 8:35 PM
Indiana new law (by zero [IN]) Mar 9, 2023 7:54 AM
Indiana new law (by S i d [MO]) Mar 9, 2023 9:13 AM
Indiana new law (by Moshe [CA]) Mar 9, 2023 12:41 PM
Indiana new law (by Frank [MA]) Mar 9, 2023 1:47 PM
Indiana new law (by zero [IN]) Mar 9, 2023 2:06 PM
Indiana new law (by zero [IN]) Mar 9, 2023 2:26 PM
Indiana new law (by Moshe [CA]) Mar 9, 2023 3:53 PM
Indiana new law (by zero [IN]) Mar 9, 2023 4:49 PM
Indiana new law (by LisaFL [FL]) Mar 9, 2023 5:23 PM
Indiana new law (by Moshe [CA]) Mar 9, 2023 6:28 PM
Indiana new law (by WMH [NC]) Mar 9, 2023 8:35 PM
Indiana new law (by MikeA [TX]) Mar 9, 2023 8:38 PM
Indiana new law (by Moshe [CA]) Mar 9, 2023 9:41 PM
Indiana new law (by Don [PA]) Mar 9, 2023 9:56 PM
Indiana new law (by Moshe [CA]) Mar 9, 2023 11:41 PM
Indiana new law (by WMH [NC]) Mar 10, 2023 7:10 AM
Indiana new law (by MikeA [TX]) Mar 10, 2023 9:39 AM
Indiana new law (by John... [MI]) Mar 10, 2023 10:24 AM
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Indiana new law (by Hoosier [IN]) Posted on: Mar 7, 2023 11:29 PM
Under consideration is House Bill 1148. Requires LL to repair “essential systems” within 24 hours. There are exceptions, and as long as LL makes a “good effort” they will be ok. Also say tenants can withhold rent or use it to pay for repairs if the give advance notice to LL. Lots of details, see full law below.
Indiana new law (by Moshe [CA]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 12:16 AM
This bill just seems to fill in details of laws that are pretty much standard across the US (not to mention the westernized world). It probably came about as a result of landlord's taking over advantage of existing law. A time limit for repair of "essential systems", allows for judges to use "good effort", rent withholding for landlord recalcitrance.
Sounds like a win-win situation for all parties.
Indiana new law (by Rick [IN]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 5:49 AM
Has been scheduled for a future hearing in the Judiciary Committee. Would urge Hoosier LLs to call their State Representatives and Senators to defeat this bill as it duplicates local health and safety codes with the added hardship and complexity of state law and courts in LL/tenant civil laws.
This bill will also introduce the idea that tenants may withhold rent for anything they consider "necessary." Would also be a burgeoning of liberal law students setting up tenant help groups that would further deteriorate and complicate LL/tenant law and relationships.
Another introduced bill is HB1532 related to bedbugs which places the unrealistic burden solely on the LL. It has been sent to a Senate review committee. --75.107.xxx.xxx
Indiana new law (by Bonanza [NC]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 6:40 AM
There are times when your HVAC can not be fixed in 24 hours. That's just a fact. Parts have to ordered, parts have to be installed. There are other HVAC customers other than your tenant's emergency. --65.188.xxx.xxx
Indiana new law (by Ray-N-Pa [PA]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 7:02 AM
If what you say is true, then maybe government can also do this. Can CalTrans be held to this same standard. You know fix an essential system like a bridge or road in 24 hours. Nope planning and engineering take years.
Where I would think someone should typically be over to a house to check things out quickly, parts and materials simply don't exist. If there is an insurance claim associated with the breakage on the house, does this mean the insurance company will be there to assess things in 1/2 of a working day and the repair techs in tow?
Working hours typically run from 730 to 6.
Instead, I see this simply driving the cost of repairs and thus rent upward.
Then again, California had the largest net migration loss out of all states.
Indiana new law (by Vee [OH]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 7:14 AM
I want to remind the newer landlords and managers what this is and I agree with Mosche above - this is really not much new, electrical and fire safety have always been -fix it pronto- type repairs, if you had worked with HUD or Sec8 a broken switch or outlet cover would result in payment suspension until re-inspected - inoperative smoke detector same thing and getting scheduled for an inspection is an automatic 2 weeks or more in condensed housing areas so you lose a lot of income when these violations occur.
So turn over the coin - when the tenant damages something many of us have in our lease that funds paid go onto the account and the oldest balance is paid - when a full payment is not made the balance carries over with late fees in the following month - this reciprocal needs to be enforced by the owner/manager, failing to pay off the balance will result in eviction process beginning. --76.190.xxx.xxx
Indiana new law (by Hollis [MA]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 7:55 AM
Good or bad laws, I wish in any law would have the sponser and maybe a easy way to find who supported it. Politicians pass laws without having to be easily identified. --66.30.xx.xxx
Indiana new law (by WMH [NC]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 8:35 AM
Vee, with the breaks in the supply chain and lack of labor, this law could be onerous.
Recently had to replace a septic drain field. We started the process the day it was reported: septic guy inspected, said we need new, we pulled permit same day, sent it to septic guy and paid 50% of the job. (Total $7k ouch.) FOUR WEEKS later it was done. Through no fault of ours, we are not their only customer.
They were not without use of the plumbing facility, but the tank was leaking (not a lot, luckily) onto the far side of the property.
What were our option besides what we did? Put them all up in a hotel? (quadplex, so 4 families...)
However, I do agree a landlord has a duty to try ameliorate the effects of an essential system breakdown, so fast response to reports on no heat, AC, hot water, etc. But to allow a tenant to decide what's essential sounds scary to me.
If we can agree on what IS essential, maybe this is needed. --50.82.xxx.xxx
Indiana new law (by Ray-N-Pa [PA]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 9:25 AM
Excellent point WMH
Septic systems are essential. If it takes the government 10 months to approve the septic repair permit, how is the owner suppose to fix it in 24 hours without breaking different laws.
Vee you use a nice example....what happens when the tenant breaks an essential system....and might have or might not have the financial means for the repair
Indiana new law (by Oregon Woodsmoke [ID]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 10:24 AM
Hard to fix in 24 hours if there is no labor available.
The big problem is the tenants who game the system will quickly discover they can "hire" Uncle Bob to do "needed repairs" and bill the landlord for it. whether the repair is actually legitimate or not.
Probably none of us here allow tenants to pick their own repairment and decide all on their own what needs to be fixed and what needs to be replaced. With this they can do whatever they want and bill the landlord for it.
If the landlord disagrees that an item needs repair or replace, the tenant can go ahead and do it anyway and bill the landlord. We have all had tenants who want new and better. I once had a tenant who insisted that the water heater didn't work. I tested it and timed it and it produced plenty of hot water, but she kept crying about it not working. With this law, she could order in a plumber and have the water heater replaced at my expense. --76.178.xxx.xxx
Indiana new law (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 11:09 AM
Indiana law already requires the LL to make repairs "in a reasonable time". The system we have right now works well.
My lease is clear: Resident will allow approx 30 days for Non-emergency repairs.
Just because another state has a certain law does not mean it's good.
Withholding rent would be catastrophic in Indiana. Super easy excuse to not be held responsible for not paying your rent. Then when they move out what happens to the amount due?
Talk about more reasons for residents to argue in court, sue the LL, judges to leave the LLs hanging.
Indiana new law (by S i d [MO]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 11:21 AM
Watch those rent prices go up, up, UP as more Ma and Pa landlords get out of the business due to Govt overreach and trying to meddle with the market.
Only Govt bureaucrats would be crazy enough to think you can successfully legislate repair times when there's bad weather, shortage of contractors, shortages of parts, etc. Nope, this will drive more folks away from providing rental units, and the loss of rental units will simply push prices higher for the ones that remain.
Developers and investors will see these laws re-allocate their money where it is treated the best. There's no law requiring them to build/invest more in housing in states with onerous regulations.
Indiana new law (by MikeA [TX]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 12:16 PM
I don't pay premium weekend or holiday rates for trades at my own house, I deal with it until Monday. I know I'm not alone here. So tenants are legislated more rights than the average homeowner. Crazy. --209.205.xxx.xx
Indiana new law (by S i d [MO]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 3:09 PM
MikeA, your answer gave me a thought. Let's say your live in rural Indiana and there is no 24/7/365 HVAC or plumber to hire... They only work 8 am to 5 pm, Monday through Friday.
This new law will punish those LLs who choose to operate in smaller communities where services are not as available. --184.4.xx.xxx
Indiana new law (by John... [MI]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 6:11 PM
MikeA: So, if on a Friday night, their heat goes out, you just ignore it until Monday because you don't pay premium weekend rates for an HVAC repair person? I mean, I see that you are in Texas... But if that was done in Michigan, your pipes would be frozen by Sunday morning...
I'm with Moshe and Vee -- this is not much new and is just making it more easily enforceable.
Also, some people seem to be missing the point that it just requires the LL to make a "good effort" to try to remedy this quickly. So, if you CANNOT get a 24/7/365 plumber, but you tried to do so, then this does not hurt you. Asking "how am I supposed to fix a septic in 24 hours" is completely ignoring the reality of this bill. If you called and tried to schedule that septic fix, then you're fine -- even if it takes more than 24 hours to get it done. (Although, of course, if it is going to be weeks, then you might have obligations to do something else, of course, but that bill doesn't change that as it has always been that way.)
Indiana new law (by Vee [OH]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 6:33 PM
Heating is essential - when it stops we take a portable plug-in version or 2 - ya got heat now till the mainframe is back online. Next plumbing backup - we try to snake while the guy is traveling with the -big stinkin drain snake, in an earlier post about a main drain the plumber who did not reach mud was doing a disservice to the owner and tenant by not actually getting far enough down the main line - this was likely just a plugged main line - who operates the drains there? I never put a finger on the faucet your honor, the drains were free flowing for how long tenant was resident minus 2 weeks or a month, who finances damages - tenant.
Aldo short phrase we all admire, owner is in charge - tenant is not. Bill in next rent cycle just like you already have in your lease, another month and not paid off 97 percent - eviction for unpaid rent begins next. --76.190.xxx.xxx
Indiana new law (by MikeA [TX]) Posted on: Mar 8, 2023 8:35 PM
John, yes I take a portable over to keep them warm until Monday. The problem with your argument on "good effort" is that in the same legislation it allows the tenant to withhold rent and authorized them to repair my property. So, when tenant doesn't like having to use space heaters for a couple of days and calls their brother in law that is a weekend HVAC guy that charges $700 for something my guy would have charged $100 on Monday then withholds it from the rent there is a problem.
First off, in my experience, tenants are less ethical than landlords so you have just created a different (and larger) social problem without similar legislation to hold tenants accountable for their side.
Second, I do not authorize my tenants to make repairs or modifications to my property. When their repair person causes major damage, knowing they don't have money to cover it, it is coming out of my pocket not the state coffers. Not to mention I doubt the legislation requires that they use a licensed, bonded, and insured repair person so who assumes the risk (I know the answer to that).
Third, they are inflicting additional risk into an existing contract and in essence removing a landlords rights.
Finally, there are plenty of existing laws that cover habitability to go after bad landlord actions, there is no reason to add to the 400 feet deep stack of legislation that already exists. --209.205.xxx.xx
Indiana new law (by zero [IN]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 7:54 AM
In my part of the state when the first cold spell hits you are lucky to get any HVAC guy to even answer the phone. Nobody does preventative maintenance on the units. Cold hits, furnace gets cranked up and conks out.
I have talked to more than one heat guy that said he and his crew works 24 hours a day just to keep up.
The same thing happens when the first heat wave goes thru.
So I call but can't get anyone to run service. I take some floor heaters over to keep the place above freezing. Tenant decides that isn't good enough and now I have to prove that I tried?
Why is it that most laws hurt the good guys while the bad ones keep on keeping on? --107.147.xx.xxx
Indiana new law (by S i d [MO]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 9:13 AM
MikeA + 10,000 points.
Freedom of contract is the issue, not how difficult or easy it is to comply with the ever increasing list of rules. Just because the Govt makes 1,000 easy-to-comply-with rules doesn't mean that's okay.
Just to give perspective: the first Federal Income tax for the American Civil War was 3% on income over $800. That was very easy to comply with. Today, the federal tax code is over 75,000 pages. It is so complex even the IRS agents get it wrong frequently. Billions of $$$ each year are spent trying to comply with these formerly "easy to comply with" rules.
T's already have a method to obtain relief if the LL isn't holding up his end of the bargain: the courts. The same applies to me. However, even in my relatively LL friendly state, once a tenant stops paying I am the one who must take the expensive process of kicking them out. And while I am fairly efficient and effective when it comes to collections, I only get about 40-50 cents of every dollar I'm owed due to the simple fact that once the tenant moves it's difficult to trace them if they job hop.
With that in mind, it's hard to make a persuasive argument that tenants are somehow at a disadvantage compared to landlords. If anyone needs a new law protecting rights, it's landlords. I'd like to see expedited evictions, for example, and for not paying rent to carry theft charges the same as stealing a stick of gum from a store would. The threat of jail time and/or civil fines might convince a lot of deadbeats to either pay up or MOVE when they no longer can or want to pay me.
Indiana new law (by Moshe [CA]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 12:41 PM
Pity the poor tenant. His heat goes out in February in IN (next to Chicago, gets to 20 below zero), and landlord says he can’t get it fixed right away. Why can’t tenant just be patient and wait until it’s convenient for landlord to get it done?
Well, if this bill passes, then tenant will have some leverage that he won’t have to suffer more than 24 hours for relief. The courts will determine all of the unspecified terms: what are “essential services”, what is “good effort”, under what conditions may tenants exercise right to withhold rent. If IN is well enough organized, then judges will have conferences (formal or informal) about how to handle these problems.
What happens to the poor tenant, in 20 below, no heat, maybe kids at home, maybe a sick wife or grandmother? Does landlord care? So some landlords may bring over a space heater (1500 watts) or maybe even 2. Of course there may be business problems? Everyone wants a furnace repairman when the weather gets cold. Small town businessman(woman) may have limited choice of vendors. No businessman wants to spend money if he doesn’t have to. Parts may be not be readily available. So, is it enough to ignore the problem until its convenient for landlord to get it fixed?
WMH knows the answer. But I guess she doesn’t like the answer. She rented out the dwelling with a faulty heater (or Septic tank, or whatever). But tenant paid for a working heater (or septic tank, or whatever) and isn’t receiving it. So how can he be made whole? WMH doesn’t like the idea of providing them with alternative housing. But she collects the money for rent. So how should the tenants be made whole?
The courts will decide about conditions for rent-withholding, not me or WMH. IN law probably has a requirement about minimum temperature in the house, and that would probably not require tenants to have to huddle around a space heater, if they paid for whole-house heating. WMH is a businesswoman, not simply a landlord with a handlebar moustache, so she knows that circumstances often arise where easy solutions are not easily found, and action must be taken at landlord’s expense. It her responsibility.
Indiana new law (by Frank [MA]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 1:47 PM
"With that in mind, it's hard to make a persuasive argument that tenants are somehow at a disadvantage compared to landlords. If anyone needs a new law protecting rights, it's landlords. I'd like to see expedited evictions, for example, and for not paying rent to carry theft charges the same as stealing a stick of gum from a store would. The threat of jail time and/or civil fines might convince a lot of deadbeats to either pay up or MOVE when they no longer can or want to pay me."
I agree but politicians know that there are more tenant voters than LL voters. And those "obviously wealthy" landlords get little sympathy from much of the public who thinks that all that rental income goes directly into lls pockets to be spent on vacations in Hawaii.
I also would like to see laws/bills with the politician's / sponsor's name included in the heading. So we can credit/blame them, and they can't be so stealthy --96.236.xxx.xx
Indiana new law (by zero [IN]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 2:06 PM
Representative Sue Errington
Click on bill details and it lets you know who the author is. --107.147.xx.xxx
Indiana new law (by zero [IN]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 2:26 PM
Not all landlords in Indiana are slumlords. There are some of us that actually care about our tenants and our properties.
Last month I had a tenant contact me about no heat. I talked to them and everything aimed at the thermostat needing batteries.
Two days later I get a call about no heat in same place. They replaced the batteries two days earlier but didn't tell me the furnace wasn't working still.
I stopped the job I was on and went over to see what I could find out. The batteries were put in backwards. I got the heat going again and asked if they would rather have a non-programmable thermostat. Since they had problems working with this one. Yes, they would love that. So I went out and bought a simple heat/cool thermostat with a lever to control the temperature.
Got a call a few days after saying it wasn't working right. Went over that day. All was working as it should. I explained that they didn't need to look at the numbers on the thing. They needed to set the temperature to where they felt comfortable. Even said put a red dot where you want the heat, then this summer do a blue dot for the AC.
Was contacted yesterday that they still can't figure out the thermostat and they want the other one back.
So if we had this new law they can claim I didn't do enough and not pay rent? I went out of my way to make it work better for them and yet they still can't grasp the simplicity of it all.
Not as bad as no heat when it is 20, but still a situation where a tenant could hold rents, hire Jim Bob down the street who writes a bill for $500 and splits the difference with them, or just turn me in to the courts (which are already nearly overwhelmed).
Three years or so ago I had a furnace that lost its main board. Contacted a number of HVAC companies and nobody could get to it for three days at least. I got back with the tenants and offered to bring over enough space heaters to keep them comfortable. Said if it ramped up their electric bill I would cover the difference. Instead they said they would spend the weekend at her mother's house. No worries.
They didn't ask for rent reduction. They knew I tried to make it as right as I could. I am a good landlord. I take care of mine. Just seems that all you want to do is take away my rights of ownership and let a person who's only qualification is that they are paying rent take care of it.
I don't get it. Maybe more explanation is in order. --107.147.xx.xxx
Indiana new law (by Moshe [CA]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 3:53 PM
Zero, you don't seem to have the logic of being a landlord.
If I understand you, you recite this problem of a tenant complaining about lack of heat, but unable to understand how to make it work.
Well, the logic of being a landlord does not consist of making repairs but of understanding how to work with tenants and also how to deal in court.
Replacing the batteries on the thermostat was your responsibility, not theirs. You should have gone out there, replaced the batteries, shown them how the heating system was working, maybe with instructions, as well as making sure that you had enough documentation that you did your duty.
If the tenant withholds rent and you don't think that he was right to do so, then in this small-claim-intensive business, you exercise your rights and go to court, if you are unable to satisfactorily work things out, just like any other business.
Regarding you lost main heater board and delays in getting an HVAC company appointment, well its YOUR heater, You are the one who should know the heater and how to get parts promptly and who to call. Maybe there are creative ways to get a preferred appointment, but otherwise, surely you are not suggesting that the tenant should wait and suffer? If wait is inevitable, suffering need not be. You did a pretty good job with your tenant in working out a satisfactory solution, good luck with future crises.
And finally, did you have enough experience in going to court, to understand how a judge is likely to view cases like this? Especially cases where landlord claims "good effort"? Watch how the courts decide to deal with them.
Indiana new law (by zero [IN]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 4:49 PM
I walk every new tenant thru all of these things when they move in. This tenant thought she knew but obviously didn't.
Replacing batteries is most definitely not my responsibility. States as much in my lease. Same as with light bulbs.
As for the main board going out what you suggest is absurd at best. I stock many items. Probably more than I should. There is no sensible way for me to have every single part of every single item that I own on hand.
I have been to the courts in this area enough to know that what I do is all legit. If it went to court I would prevail, but it should never be an option to go as I have done nothing wrong.
As to your first sentence I have to laugh and wonder why you come to a forum set up to help landlords and talk this way. This shall not turn into a measuring contest but trust me I can hold my own in these regards.
Good day to you. --107.147.xx.xxx
Indiana new law (by LisaFL [FL]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 5:23 PM
Zero, I agree. And nine times out of ten when I get an AC issue it call it’s goes lime this (actual quote) received on a Saturday this month:
“Lisa, I think our AC is not working right. After four or five days now the AC in the afternoon is only cooling to 80 degrees and it’s hotter inside than outside.”
So now I have to pay for an emergency repair over the weekend? I don’t think so.
Tenant instructed to vacuum the drainline with the special tool issued to him at move in. Did not correct the issue. AC serviced and fixed on Monday. AC is properly maintained and less than two years old. Tenant is happy because tenant is reasonable, works in the trades and completely understands how things work in the real world. --24.96.xx.xxx
Indiana new law (by Moshe [CA]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 6:28 PM
"I walk every new tenant thru all of these things when they move in."
I DIDN'T SAY THAT YOU DIDN'T. But evidently it wasn't enough. Also, did you obtain documentation that heater was working and that tenant saw that it was working? So how is she going to hold you responsible for not responding to repairing heater within 24 hours?
I don't know anything about IN law, but I do know that a lease clause that violates the law is unenforceable, and if IN law makes landlord responsible for operation of heating system, then your battery clause may be unenforceable.
I DIDN'T SAY you need to stock all parts. I did say that you need to know where to get them, and there are overnight shipping companies.
But you missed the whole point of my question. If this law passes, then it leaves a lot of phrases undefined, and leaves it to the courts to decide. A good court administration would try to organize their courts so that all (or most) judges would make the same decisions under the same circumstances (thats what appellate decisions do, also). Thats why I suggested that you WATCH the courts to see how they end up treating this new law, if it passes.
That's why I called it the "logic" of being a landlord.
One aspect is that discussion with tenants (anyone) is so important in any kind of dealings. A second aspect is about
going to court when you are right, in order to get a logical decision. And, the third aspect is about knowing how the courts will deal with new issues. For example, how will they see the issue of 24 hours before tenant can withhold rent? CA does a very good job of meeting and conferring about the best way to handle problems just like this one, and to establish the logic of why to handle it that way, having all judges on basically the same page, but allowing individual freedom to match the circumstances.
Remember that I complemented you on how you handled the circumstances of the heater main board. Now, all you need is a little experience in careful reading.
Indiana new law (by WMH [NC]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 8:35 PM
Moshe, for the record, We don't rent housing with defective essential systems, just to re-write that particular sentence of yours.
MY point was what does a LL in IN do if (whatever problem) requires a professional, licensed repair and you have to wait for that repair like any normal person? Because indeed you ARE a normal person... --50.82.xxx.xxx
Indiana new law (by MikeA [TX]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 8:38 PM
Moshe, you live in a make believe dream world where the fix-it fairies are always at hand, tenants are always a attentive and respectful, everything you touch is perfect, and you are the smartest person in the world.
Back in the real world, I would suggest all the IN landlords contact their state representation and make sure they understand the concerns landlords will have with this. It might be helpful to remind them there are plenty of examples where additional legislation that makes it harder on landlords generally results in those costs being passed on to their tenants or rental inventory being eliminated of exacerbating the situation they are trying to prevent. There are many examples of this playing out in more liberal areas of the country. --209.205.xxx.xx
Indiana new law (by Moshe [CA]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 9:41 PM
"We don't rent housing with defective essential systems"
But am I wrong that YOUR septic tank drain field WAS defective? Did you do it intentionally? maybe not, but it was defective when the repairman said you needed a new one.
That means, (I am guessing) that you were out of compliance with your local warranty of habitability, and that means that tenant may have certain remedies available to him. I don't know anything about septic tanks, so if thats not a habitability problem, I apologize, but wonder why You originally brought that into the discussion.
Suppose, for the sake of argument, we change the problem to lacking heat in 20 below weather, because of needing parts and service. Is that OK?
HVAC can't come for a while, parts are not available in town or in nearest big city. But tenants NEED heat. What to do? What choices are there?
One choice is that tenants provided with a few electrical space heaters. Needs to be enough, electrical wiring needs to support. Tell tenants to wait 3-5 days. Does tenant deserve anything? I don't know, try a LL/Tenant attorney. Is tenant getting his quiet enjoyment of the property, and what about a landlord that drags his feet against making an expensive and undesired repair?
Choice 2 could be that after a few days, repairman says needs parts not available in town or in driving distance. YOU NEED TO KNOW where to get parts promptly, where to order, pay for overnight shipping, get repairman out again.
What about tenant inconvenience/discomfort? That would be up to a judge, but do you think he needs to be sympathetic to the cost?
Choice 3 could be to provide alternate housing. More expensive, but is it landlord responsibility or not? Thats the question, but whats the answer? Different states, different laws, different judges, different judicial standards. Morally, I believe its the correct decision, and if it is landlord obligation, then cost is not the issue. The issue is also NOT a question of a 24 hour requirement to repair, because judges are faced with working out problems like that all the time. The real issue is that if landlord is responsible, then he is responsible. If landlords are failing in their duty to timely repair in the state of Indiana, then judges NEED and SHOULD enforce a law like this. Unless, of course, you want Indiana to have housing standards that are lower than those of other states.
Indiana new law (by Don [PA]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 9:56 PM
MikeA--I don't know which is worse:
A. The tenant calls their handyman friend/relative who will supposedly fix it cheap---except they actually make it worse, or
B. They call the big name company with billboard ads and a ton of overhead that charges more per hour than attorneys and upsells like crazy. --73.141.xxx.xxx
Indiana new law (by Moshe [CA]) Posted on: Mar 9, 2023 11:41 PM
Best is for landlord to call HIS handyman, pay him enough to do a good job and promptly.
Indiana new law (by WMH [NC]) Posted on: Mar 10, 2023 7:10 AM
Actually, Moshe, if you don't know anything about septic systems I'm surprised you commented on MY comment.
And yes, for true essential systems like heat (not so much here) and AC (can be very much here) we keep back-up systems on hand for emergencies. It actually makes OUR lives easier. Any good landlord does this or similar.
Tenants aren't stupid: they know the pros are flat-out busy, 7 days a week, at all times, year-round. We (the Royal We, not us personally) can't HIRE enough bodies fast enough for all the jobs available, skilled and non-skilled alike. Tenants are grateful we make the repair calls same day even if we can't FIX it same day.
As when something needs to REPLACED and we have to wait for permit approval and replacement item. Or when it needs to be repaired but parts are "on the truck" heading this way, won't be here until next week...
And we fight the Us (LLs and Tenants alike) vs. Them problem. No one is building our type of small home anymore - only multi-million dollar McMansions. Heck not even MCMansions - true mansions. Sometimes we have to go to the back of the line based on dollar value of the job. A brand-new HVAC system for us is about $7k these days. Septics run $5-10k or more. At a new McMansion, they are installing multiple systems at a time, so they tend to come first. --50.82.xxx.xxx
Indiana new law (by MikeA [TX]) Posted on: Mar 10, 2023 9:39 AM
Moshe, now you are showing your inexperience in dealing with these issues (do you even manage your own units?). Neither the HVAC or septic is legally fixed by a handyman in most of the US. Both of these repairs require licensed repair people. The HVAC in particular can kill someone with the deadly carbon monoxide gas if not fixed properly. Thank you for helping make my point for why the State should not authorize tenants to hire their own repair people. Even though it isn't right, you know the ambulance chasing lawyers would go after the landlord if this happened. The result is smart landlords will need to increase and expand their insurance, those costs will be passed onto renters. These are a couple of the unintended consequences politicians don't think about when proposing legislation. Unless you think the legislators don't care if they kill people with their legislation? I guess that's a possibility when all you care about is buying votes. --209.205.xxx.xx
Indiana new law (by John... [MI]) Posted on: Mar 10, 2023 10:24 AM
MikeA: The "HVAC" example above was dead batteries. Pretty sure that can be fixed by a handyman...
I think that is the sort of situation that Moshe was referring to that can be fixed by a handyman.
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