You must inform the owner or manager of a problem before the repair obligation arises as specified in the Texas Property Code Sec. 92.052. Your notice to the owner or manager must be in writing only if your lease is in writing and requires written notice. If the owner or manager won't make repairs needed to protect your health, safety, or security, and you follow the procedures required by law, you may be entitled according to Section 92.056(e) to:
- 2) Have the condition repaired or remedied according to Section 92.0561 and deduct the cost of the repair from the rent without the necessity of judicial action or;
- 3) Obtain judicial remedies as specified in Section 92.0563 of the Texas Property Code.
However, you must follow these steps:
- 1) Send the owner or manager a dated letter by certified mail, return receipt requested, or by registered mail, outlining the needed repairs. You may also deliver the letter in person. Keep a copy of the letter. Be sure that your rent is current when the notice is received.
- 2) Your owner or manager should make a diligent effort to repair the problem within a reasonable time after receipt of the notice. The law presumes seven days to be a reasonable time, but the owner or manager can rebut this presumption. If the owner or manager has not made a diligent effort to complete the repair within seven days and you did not have the first notice letter delivered to your owner or manager via certified mail, return receipt requested, or via registered mail, you will need to send a second notice letter regarding the needed repairs.
If the owner or manager still has not made diligent efforts to repair the problem within a reasonable time after receipt of the notice letter sent by certified mail, return receipt requested or by registered mail, you may be entitled to terminate the lease, repair the problem and deduct the cost from your rent, or obtain judicial remedies as specified in Section 92.0563 of the Texas Property Code. You should consult with an attorney before taking any of these actions.