Is reduction of rent warranted in this situation? If yes, how to proceed
February 23, 2013 10:23 AM Subscribe
I'm asking this for a senior citizen friend. Does he have a right to ask for a reduction in rent for a situation wherein he warned management of criminal activity......but was ignored?
posted by naplesyellow to law & government (16 answers total)
My friend Dave is 78 and he lives alone with his cat in an apartment in Oregon. The apartment is in a large multi-unit complex.
For several months Dave and some younger people have been in a battle over a handicapped space that my friend usually uses. My friend talked to management several times about the situation and they were no help. I researched it and found that there was little he could do as the complex is private property and apparently they don't have to enforce laws pertaining to handicapped spaces. Still, of course, my friend complained here and there to management, because the people using the space seemed hale and hearty and not handicapped.
The younger people also didn't seem the type to live in this particular complex, because they were seedy types. Dave reported suspicious things to management several times over the course of several months. Each time he told the apartment manager something he was blown off and told that because of confidentiality issues, she could not discuss the other "tenants" with Dave.
Dave never put his concerns in writing and he didn't call the police himself, because he only had suspicions. He reported to management, for example, that he saw a guy go into the apartment with a "ton" of tubing.
Yesterday the police raided the apartment in question and found a meth lab. When the meth lab was discovered Dave had to leave his apartment for the day. He was told to take his cat with him, but the cat went into hiding with all the commotion..he had to ultimately leave the cat behind. He worried, of course, all day about his cat.
When Dave was in the Apartment manager's office and other neighbors were talking about the situation Dave was told NOT to talk about what he knew with others. He has always been given this admonition, because management has "rules" about "confidentiality". This "confidentiality" thing is what he was always told each time he complained about people who did not seem like they were legitimately on any kind of lease. He specifically told management months ago that he thought the people downstairs were making drugs (and he was blown off).
Well, today Dave is back in his apartment and except for some residual vinegar smell, all is well. The cat is fine. Life can continue as usual and my friend is happy the bad guys are gone. He likes living there. Here is his question. Can he ask for money off of his rent for all the inconvenience of this? The fact that Management allowed the situation to continue after repeated complaints seems like a factor...is it?
If Dave wants to approach the apartment complex about this matter, should he put his request in writing? What would be adequate compensation be for a situation like this? Is he entitled to something? Does he have any legal grounds to ask for this? Should he take this to people above the manager who ignored him? Thank you for any advice.