Tenant Toolkit: Getting a Professional Inspection

Hire your own professional inspections.

Local agencies will make a basic record of habitability problems and issue generic citations. They can issue important, legally significant Notices of Violation. That said, they rarely provide very specific information on the nature of the problem or professional guidance on how to make repairs.

When your landlord fails to fix serious leaks, floods, mold, foul odors, rodents, pests, or other problems that make being at home a living hell, you may need professionals to tell your landlord exactly what to do to fix the problem.

If your home has suffered serious water damage or plumbing issues, you may need to call a plumber or general contractor to assess whatever issues your landlord wants to ignore.

If your home has a mold problem, or otherwise makes you feel sick, you may need to call a mold or contamination inspector. The same is true for lead or asbestos problems.

Whatever the specific problem is, consider spending a small amount on a professional who can either fix the problem themselves at a low cost, or use special tools to measure the effect of a flood on your rental unit.

Professional inspectors and contractors can either repair the problem, or, if necessary, provide a legal basis for showing that your landlord knew exactly how to help… but failed to follow professional advice.

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