One of the perks of renting an apartment or home is that you typically don’t have responsibility for maintenance. Your landlord generally has to pay for and repair major systems. If the refrigerator stops working or the roof starts leaking, your landlord will be the one who has to cover those costs and arrange for repairs.
When you first moved in, you may not have even bothered to look for smoke detectors in your home because they seem like such a common-sense investment for a landlord to make. It was only after you lost property in a fire or a family member suffered smoke inhalation or burns that you realized your landlord never provided you with smoke detectors. Is there a requirement for them to do so under Texas law?
Landlords should install and maintain smoke detectors
Texas law does make landlords responsible for installing and maintaining smoke detectors in their units. There should be at least one smoke detector outside of each bedroom.
In fact, if a tenant has hearing issues, they have the right to ask their landlord to install a system that will effectively alert them through a method other than sound. Some landlords install the cheapest smoke detectors they can and then promptly forget to do anything about them. A smoke detector with dead batteries or bad circuits will do nothing to keep tenants safe.
You can stand up against a negligent property owner who puts you at risk
If you have any reason to think that the injuries or losses you suffered in the fire would have been preventable with early detection of the fire through a working smoke alarm, you may have grounds to bring a claim against your landlord. Reaching out to the team at Wyatt Law Firm can help you explore your rights.