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Habitability is the conformance of a residence or abode to the implied warranty of habitability. A residence that complies is said to be habitable. It is an implied warranty or contract, meaning it does not have to be an express contract, covenant, or provision of a contract. There was no implied warranty of habitability for tenants at common law and the legal doctrine has since developed in many jurisdictions through housing laws and regulations.[1][2] Habitability is synonymous with tenantability.[3]

In order to be habitable, such housing usually:

New York law

Some states, such as New York, have given additional statutory protections in addition to those created by caselaw.[14] These statutes include:

  1. Lobby attendant service by a concierge or landlord [15]
  2. Elevator mirrors [16]
  3. Smoke detectors[17]
  4. Window guards[18]
  5. Intercoms and self-locking doors[19]
  6. Protection from lead paint [20]


Violation of the warranty of habitability results in constructive eviction, whereby the landlord or lessor has, in effect, evicted the tenant or lessee.[21] The tenant may remedy the problem,[22][23] or complain to local government authorities for remedies.[24]

See also


  1. ^ "Landlord-Tenant Law". Wex. Cornell Law School. Retrieved 16 December 2017. 
  2. ^ "Duties of the Landlord". LawShelf. National Paralegal College. Retrieved 16 December 2017. 
  3. ^ "Is tenantability broader than habitability?"
  4. ^ In New York, see N.Y. Multiple Dwelling Law § 79.
  5. ^ Mold in condominium: Negligent maintenance: Breach of warranty of habitability: Settlement: Verdict | Law Reporter | Find Articles at BNET.com
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-09-28. Retrieved 2007-05-02. 
  7. ^ Pennsylvania
  8. ^ generally, United States
  9. ^ California
  10. ^ District of Columbia
  11. ^ Vermont (form).
  13. ^ Massachusetts
  14. ^ See N.Y. Attorney General's Website Archived 2007-03-12 at the Wayback Machine., q.v., and in External sources.
  15. ^ N.Y. Multiple Dwelling Law §50-c
  16. ^ N.Y. Multiple Dwelling Law §51-b; NYC Admin. Code §27-2042
  17. ^ N.Y. Multiple Residence Law §15; Buffalo Code Ch. 395; NYC Admin. Code §27-2045, §27-2046
  18. ^ NYC Health Code §131.15
  19. ^ N.Y. Multiple Dwelling Law §50-a
  20. ^ NYC Health Code §173.14;
  21. ^ Josephson, Richard C. (1971). "The Implied Warranty of Habitability in Landlord-Tenant Relations". William & Mary Law Review. 12 (3): 580. Retrieved 16 December 2017. 
  22. ^ See N.Y. Real Property Law §235-b.
  23. ^ Warranty of Habitability (rev 7/96)
  24. ^ N.Y. Multiple Dwelling Law (MDL) §78 and §80; Multiple Residence Law (MRL) §174. (Note: The MDL applies to cities with a population of 325,000 or more and the MRL applies to cities with less than 325,000 and to all towns and villages; from N.Y. Attorney General's Website Archived 2007-03-12 at the Wayback Machine..
  25. ^ (Note to editors: merge with this article?)

External links

  • Evicting Tenants in New York
  • The Attorney General of the State of New York's page
  • Tenant's rights
  • Pennsylvania law - Lehigh Valley Legal Services
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