Stevens Point, WI asked in Landlord - Tenant for Wisconsin

Q: My landlord claims it is not her responsibility to ensure the apartment can maintain a comfortable living temperature.

Wis. Stat. ch. 704 and ch. 799, Wis. Admin. Code § ATCP 134 states that the apartment should be able to maintain a temperature of at least 67 degrees. My landlord says that it is my responsibility to keep the temperature at that level. I believe that it is her responsibility.

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1 Lawyer Answer

Jason Anthony Greller

Answered
  • Landlord Tenant Lawyer
  • Madison, WI
  • Licensed in Wisconsin

A: Yes. A landlord on a residential lease in Wisconsin has a duty to ensure that the premises has adequate heating. If the system needs to be repaired it is also the landlord's duty maintain and repair the system.

See:

704.07  Repairs; untenantability.

(1)  Application of section. This section applies to any nonresidential tenancy if there is no contrary provision in writing signed by both parties and to all residential tenancies. An agreement to waive the requirements of this section in a residential tenancy, including an agreement in a rental agreement, is void. Nothing in this section is intended to affect rights and duties arising under other provisions of the statutes.

(2)  Duty of landlord.

(a) Except for repairs made necessary by the negligence of, or improper use of the premises by, the tenant, the landlord has a duty to do all of the following:

1. Keep in a reasonable state of repair portions of the premises over which the landlord maintains control.

2. Keep in a reasonable state of repair all equipment under the landlord's control necessary to supply services that the landlord has expressly or impliedly agreed to furnish to the tenant, such as heat, water, elevator, or air conditioning.

3. Make all necessary structural repairs.

4. Except for residential premises subject to a local housing code, and except as provided in sub. (3) (b), repair or replace any plumbing, electrical wiring, machinery, or equipment furnished with the premises and no longer in reasonable working condition.

5. For a residential tenancy, comply with any local housing code applicable to the premises.

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