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Tenants have a right to safety in their homes

As a tenant, the last thing you ever expected was to be handling a situation where you feel your landlord has not kept your property safe. You believe the property contains asbestos, and there are crimes taking place throughout the apartment complex.

Your landlord does have a responsibility to keep you safe and to take care of hazards. Landlords are required to disclose that properties have asbestos. If yours did not, he or she may be in violation of the law. Additionally, you should have a smoke detector and fire exits to prevent you from suffering in the case of fire.

In the case that your property is riddled with crimes, it's up to your landlord to make sure you have the appropriate locks on your doors. Additionally, if he or she knows about illegal activities taking place on the property, then that must be reported and stopped. Landlords must take reasonable precautions elsewhere, too. For example, the complex should have lights outside and have maintained landscaping to prevent crimes from taking place. By adding light and cutting back hedges, for instance, your landlord can help increase visibility at night to ward off potential criminal acts.

If your apartment complex is not safe, there are a few things you can do. You may ask your landlord to make repairs to damage or to address criminal activities occurring at the property. You may want to invest in renter's insurance and take the time to report criminal acts yourself if you witness them.

Your attorney can help if you are a victim of a negligent landlord who did not take steps to protect you. You are entitled to live in a safe, well-maintained home.

Source: Find Law, "Tenant Safety and Landlord Liability," accessed May 18, 2017

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