562A.23  Wrongful failure to supply heat, water, hot water or essential services.

1.  If contrary to the rental agreement or section 562A.15 the landlord deliberately or negligently fails to supply running water, hot water, or heat, or essential services, the tenant may give written notice to the landlord specifying the breach and may:

a.  Procure reasonable amounts of hot water, running water, heat and essential services during the period of the landlord's noncompliance and deduct their actual and reasonable cost from the rent;

b.  Recover damages based upon the diminution in the fair rental value of the dwelling unit; or

c.  Recover any rent already paid for the period of the landlord's noncompliance which shall be reimbursed on a pro rata basis.

2.  If the tenant proceeds under this section, the tenant may not proceed under section 562A.21 as to that breach.

3.  The rights under this section do not arise until the tenant has given notice to the landlord or if the condition was caused by the deliberate or negligent act or omission of the tenant, a member of the tenant's family, or other person on the premises with the consent of the tenant.

Section History: Early form

  [C79, 81, § 562A.23]

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