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What can my grandma do about her rental house because it is about to cave in? How can I help?

Asked by user in Illinois.

My grandma rents from a landlord that owns multiple houses in our area. Her house is falling in on itself and the foundation is cracking. She has notified her landlord multiple times of the issue and he hasn't provided any help. My grandparents don't have the means to hire anyone or look for a new landlord.

Answered by Enjuris Editors:

In Illinois, landlords have a legal duty to repair known dangerous conditions (see the Residential Tenants’ Right to Repair Act).

Your grandmother should provide her landlord with written notice of the dangerous conditions that she wants repaired. Send the notice by “certified mail with return receipt requested” so you have proof that the landlord received the notice.

If the landlord doesn’t make the repairs within 14 days, your grandmother has the right to hire someone to make the repairs and deduct the cost from her rent.

It’s a good idea to talk to a free or reduced-cost attorney before hiring someone to make the repairs. Here are some resources for free legal help in Illinois:

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