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A landlord must make repairs to keep the home safe


A landlord must make repairs to keep the rental property "up to code". A tenant has different legal options to get needed repairs, but the tenant must provide notice and meet other requirements.


Last updated 06/22/2023

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A landlord has a duty to maintain minimum standard conditions in its rental units. Area housing codes normally give the minimum standards a landlord must maintain. Standards differ among communities. To find out the standards in your community, call your city hall.

A Certificate of Inspection is required in some places

In the City of St. Louis, as well as many other communities, a landlord may not charge rent if the landlord fails to obtain a Certificate of Inspection for units that require a Certificate. Also, after notice from a code official that a unit is condemned, the City of St. Louis prohibits a landlord from renting and/or collecting rent from a tenant until the unit has been placed in a safe and secure condition.

Notify the landlord of problems

If bad conditions exist in your home through no fault of your own, or if the landlord fails to make repairs, notify the landlord in writing of the bad conditions and request repairs be made. You can send this notice by email, text, or by letter sent by regular mail and certified mail. Be sure to write the date and your landlord’s name and full address in the upper left-hand corner of the letter. Keep all emails and texts, as well as photocopies of all letters you send. If you can’t make a photocopy take a photo with your cell phone.