Do D.C. Landlords Have to Fix TVs and Electronics?

HomeLawsUSADCDo D.C. Landlords Have to Fix TVs and Electronics?

D.C. landlords are not required to provide or maintain T.V.s, smart home functionality, or other premium amenities. However, some leases (perhaps in luxury building) may include promises from landlords they will fix them.

If There’s No Lease

If there is no lease or the lease is silent about fixing appliances, furnishings, and the broken appliance or furnishing, then landlords does not have to provide such amenities or fix them.

If There Is a Lease

While rare, the lease might state that the landlord is responsible for maintaining appliances in good condition or that they will otherwise make such repairs. It’s very unlikely that the lease will say the word “TV” or “television” so look for a section on the landlord’s obligations to fix household items. 

If the lease does promise the TV or another amenity, then the landlord must fix it per the terms of the lease. If the landlord violates that section of the lease, the tenant is free to move out or take the landlord to landlord-tenant court or small claims court. There, they may get a court order or perhaps a reduction in rent. Overall, there are not strong protections for tenants if the landlord does not restore these services in a D.C. apartment.

Dangerous Conditions

Landlords are always required to fix or remove items that may cause physical injuries to the tenant. If the landlord knew (or should have known) about a foreseeable risk of injury to a tenant and didn’t take reasonable steps to prevent that injury, the landlord will be responsible for injuries and damage to personal property. For example, if a broken TV is emitting smoke and the tenant reported the problem to the landlord, the landlord will be responsible if it causes a fire or the smoke causes health issues.

By |August 27th, 2018|DC|

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