SOUTH CAROLINA, USA — NC codes require landlords to provide electricity, running water, and heat, but air conditioning is not on that list. However, if your lease includes an A/C system, then your landlord is required to maintain and fix it.
Here's what you need to know about needing any repair done:
#1 Put the problem and your expectation in writing. You can handwrite it and hand it over, mail it, email, text. Just make sure there is some kind of confirmation, so it's not he said-she said thing.
#2 Give the landlord a reasonable amount of time to make the fix. While reasonable isn't defined by law, it's probably longer than what you think.
If it's a major plumbing or electrical issue, a reasonable amount of time could be 24 hours. If it's something that needs a part that has to be ordered, it can be a week or longer. If there is a landlord/tenant abatement group in your city or county, take it up with them first if your landlord is not responding to your request for repair. You can also contact your area's building inspectors, or take your landlord to small claims court.
You don't want to have to take it to court, you want to be able to work it out. Sometimes, you need to put your request in writing again and include WFMY 2 Wants To Know or the city or county housing authority where you live.
#3 You can't withhold your rent to force a landlord to comply. When you withhold your rent, the court will see that as you breaking the lease agreement.