I allowed a tenant(1) to move into a another unit after a former tenant(2) moved out. Fleas were discovered in the unit tenant(1) moved out of a couple of days after the inspection. Tenant(1) was told to take care of the problem and tenant(1) said he bombed the unit soon there after. A week later the unit was inspected and the fleas are still present. I havent been able to show the unit or have the unit painted as planned. It is nearing the end of the month so I will probably go a month without getting the unit rented out because of this problem. I read through the contract and it doesn't say anything specific on this type of situation. I realize I should of had it professioinally taken care of initially and charged tenant(1) the fee which I will do now. What can I do legally for lost rent since the unit is not in a livable condition? Any information would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
Never have you tenant take care of a problem. Hire professional help and bill it to he tenant.
Pests and bugs are a touchy situation. Your first priority is to get the problem really taken care of and re-rent the unit as soon as you can. In my area the first of the month isn't the cut-off necessarily, I can rent for a partial month. But make sure the fleas are really gone.
You can probably bill the vacating tenant for the pest control costs and the rent to the end of his lease term. But beyond that it is likely on your dime and focus on getting it re-rented. We as landlords can't expect to get rental revenue for every calendar day. These types of set-backs normally average out over time and units to not be a big financial set back.
Make sure the tenant is keeping on top of fleas in the new unit also. Do you have a pet deposit to cover?