Moisture and Weatherproofing Codes
Five states explicitly address moisture and weatherproofing in some form: California, Colorado, Georgia, Virginia and Washington. California and Colorado only require effective waterproofing and weather protection.
Washington has the requirement but goes further and requires that the landlord to give information to the tenant that is either provided by or approved by the state department of health. The information must address mold. Virginia is the only state that requires the elimination of mold and the accumulation of moisture. It requires the tenant to promptly notify the landlord and the landlord must promptly respond.
Georgia has an unusual requirement that the landlord “notify the prospective tenant in writing of the property's propensity of flooding if flooding has damaged any portion of the living space covered by the lease or attachments.”
1941.1. Untenantable dwellings
A dwelling shall be deemed untenantable for purposes of Section 1941 if it substantially lacks any of the following affirmative standard characteristics or is a residential unit described in Section 17920.3 or 17920.10 of the Health and Safety Code:
(a) Effective waterproofing and weather protection of roof and exterior walls, including unbroken windows and doors.
§ 38-12-505. Uninhabitable residential premises
(1) A residential premises is deemed uninhabitable if it substantially lacks any of the following characteristics:
(a) Waterproofing and weather protection of roof and exterior walls maintained in good working order, including unbroken windows and doors;
44-7-20. Landlords required to give prospective residential tenants written notice of any previous flooding
When the owner of real property, either directly or through an agent, seeks to lease or rent that property for residential occupancy, prior to entering a written agreement for the leasehold of that property, the owner shall, either directly or through an agent, notify the prospective tenant in writing of the property's propensity of flooding if flooding has damaged any portion of the living space covered by the lease or attachments thereto to which the tenant or the tenant's resident relative has sole and exclusive use under the written agreement at least three times during the five-year period immediately preceding the date of the lease. An owner failing to give such notice shall be liable in tort to the tenant and the tenant's family residing on the leased premises for damages to the personal property of the lessee or a resident relative of the lessee which is proximately caused by flooding which occurs during the term of the lease. For purposes of this Code section, flooding is defined as the inundation of a portion of the living space covered by the lease which was caused by an increased water level in an established water source such as a river, stream, or drainage ditch or as a ponding of water at or near the point where heavy or excessive rain fell. This Code section shall apply only to leaseholds entered into on or after July 1, 1995.
55-248.13. Landlord to maintain fit premises
A. The landlord shall:
5. Maintain the premises in such a condition as to prevent the accumulation of moisture and the growth of mold, and to promptly respond to any notices from a tenant as provided in subdivision A 10 of § 55-248.16;
55-248.16. Tenant to maintain dwelling unit
A. In addition to the provisions of the rental agreement, the tenant shall:
9. Use reasonable efforts to maintain the dwelling unit and any other part of the premises that he occupies in such a condition as to prevent accumulation of moisture and the growth of mold, and to promptly notify the landlord of any moisture accumulation that occurs or of any visible evidence of mold discovered by the tenant;
The landlord will at all times during the tenancy keep the premises fit for human habitation, and shall in particular:
(8) Maintain the dwelling unit in reasonably weathertight condition;
(12) Provide tenants with information provided or approved by the department of health about the health hazards associated with exposure to indoor mold. Information may be provided in written format individually to each tenant, or may be posted in a visible, public location at the dwelling unit property. The information must detail how tenants can control mold growth in their dwelling units to minimize the health risks associated with indoor mold. Landlords may obtain the information from the department's web site or, if requested by the landlord, the department must mail the information to the landlord in a printed format. When developing or changing the information, the department of health must include representatives of landlords in the development process. The information must be provided by the landlord to new tenants at the time the lease or rental agreement is signed, and must be provided to current tenants no later than January 1, 2006, or must be posted in a visible, public location at the dwelling unit property beginning July 24, 2005;
(13) The landlord and his or her agents and employees are immune from civil liability for failure to comply with subsection (12) of this section except where the landlord and his or her agents and employees knowingly and intentionally do not comply with subsection (12) of this section.
Return to Healthy Homes