Law Office of Jason A. Nordsell
Law Office of Jason A. Nordsell

Landlord-Tenant Disputes

My Apartment is in Need of Repair, but My Landlord Won't Fix the Problem

Your landlord must repair a condition affecting your physical health or safety if:
     1) You did not cause the condition needing repair;
     2) You request in writing that the condition be repaired (consider using the free template below); and
     3) You are current on your rent.
Keep a copy of your request for repairs and proof that you mailed it to them certified with return receipt requested, and take photos/video of the condition. If a reasonable time has passed (usually 7 days,  but if the condition is severe, can be sooner) without your landlord making the repair, contact us.  You may be able to break the lease, and your landlord may be liable to you for actual damages, one month's rent plus $500, and your attorney fees.

 

I want my security deposit back!
If your landlord keeps your security deposit in bad faith, you may be entitled to over 3 times the amount of the security deposit and they will have to pay your attorney fees.  By following these steps, you can feel confident that if you’re entitled to a refund, you’ll get it:

     1) When giving the move-out notice required under your lease, include a forwarding address, send it certified mail/return receipt requested (consider using the free template below).  Keep a copy of the notice and the certified mailing.

     2) Upon removing all your furniture and cleaning the unit, take as many photos as you can to document the condition of the apartment upon move out.
     3) If you followed the steps above but haven’t received your refund after 30 days of moving out, contact us.

 

My Landlord is Retaliating Against Me

Texas law provides for penalties against landlords who retaliate against their tenants.  You may be entitled to break the lease and receive compensation.  Further, the landlord may have to pay your attorney fees and costs.  Contact us today to see what we can do for you.

 

When disputes arise between your landlord, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Document, Document, Document!  Every conversation should be noted in a log, every rent receipt stored, every written request and notice sent to your landlord by certified mail/return receipt requested, and the lease and every written communication filed in a safe place.  Your side of the story won't be enough: if you don't document, you can't prove it; if you can't prove it, you lose.  
  • ALWAYS pay rent on time.  Your landlord may not have to make repairs if you are delinquent on your rent payments at the time you make your request for repair.
Texas Move-out Notice Template
Send certified mail, return receipt requested, and according to the terms of your lease, to the address you pay rent to. Keep a copy of the notice, and the certified mailing/return receipt.
Move-out Notice.docx
Microsoft Word document [11.9 KB]
Texas Request for Repair Template
Send certified mail, return receipt requested to the address you pay rent to. Keep a copy of the request, and the certified mailing/return receipt.
RequestForRepair.docx
Microsoft Word document [10.8 KB]

What is certified mail and return receipt?

Certified mail gives you proof of mailing and the return receipt gives verification of delivery.  The return receipt is given great weight by courts as proof that you mailed it and they received it.  It generally costs around $6 for both combined and you have to go to the post office to get them.  The cost is very small compared to the potential loss of your security deposit or your ability to get your home repaired.  Remember that certified/return receipt requested is PROOF that you complied with the law and your lease, and as noted above, if you can't prove it, you lose.

Contact Us

Principal office located in Addison, Texas

 

If you have questions or want to schedule a consultation, please fill out the contact form.  Your email will be sent directly to an attorney and responded to within one business day.

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