OKLAHOMA (KFOR) – Some relief has landed for tenants when having to pay for those all too inconvenient home repairs. On Tuesday, an update to the Oklahoma Landlord and Tenant Act went into effect that will make it easier for tenants to handle repair costs if their landlords are failing to do so.
Previously, if a landlord didn’t make an essential repair after 14 days of being notified by the tenant, the tenant could deduct $100 from their rent payment to make the repair themselves. Now, they can now deduct up to the cost of one month’s rent to make the fix.
“Right now, Oklahomans are struggling. There’s global inflation,” said District 93 Oklahoma State Representative Mickey Dollens. “It’s so bad in Oklahoma, we had to write a law to allow that those tenants could be reimbursed up to one month’s rent. I say that that’s not enough.”
But Dollens does acknowledge it’s a step in the right direction.
“Because as we know, with inflation right now, the price of a dishwasher or a refrigerator or an AC unit can far well exceed the average cost of rent,” he said. “Let’s say $850. Well, if the repairs cost more than that, the tenant’s out of their pocket and it’s just not fair. I feel like as state representatives, we have a platform to be able to advocate for those who don’t have a voice.”
Dollens said this upcoming legislative session he’ll push to update the law from up to the cost of one month’s rent being allowed to go towards repairs to two months.