My question involves landlord-tenant law in the State of: California
Bare with me as this is a long story.
It started off when I went to visit my girlfriends apartment, she had been complaining about the condition of the apartment, and how it was just in total neglect of repair. Multiple electrical plugs did not work and some had pieces of plugs broken inside of them from the last tenant. Kitchen plugs were not protected by GFCI nor was the breaker. Bathroom light fixtures were hanging off the wall with wiring exposed. Thermostat is broken and the ceiling tiles next to the AC unit were falling apart and not sealed correctly. Other things to add; the old tenant that didn't leave quietly still has stuff in the apartment and it caused the move-in date of the current tenants to be postponed. In fact the old tenant left the day they moved in. So there was no proper time to look through the apartment and nothing was cleaned or repaired before hand.
Naturally as I get tired of hearing about it, I tend to do something about it. So, I wrote to the health and safety department within the city the apartment is located.
The inspector actually came out and looked into the case and from what I understand was not pleased with the landlords up-keep of the apartment. They contacted the landlord and now the landlord is furious not only at my girlfriend but has threatened me with attorneys if I continue to tell my girlfriend what is not up to code in the apartment and needs to be fixed. The landlord harshly speaking out to me with her maintenance guy, said I had no legal right to make those reports to the health and safety department as I am not a tenant. In doing so by reporting those claims to the department the landlord has said that the tenant has broken a section in her lease which says:
"Tenants agrees to inspect the apartment and notify ********** staff of any needed repairs or existing damages within 48 hours of move-in date."
In another section it states that:
"I acknowledge that if i have a maintenance issue I have to submit an email if I fail to do so my request may no be taken into consideration ____SIGN____"
Lessor repair section.
"lessor shall keep the following in good repair: Roof, exterior walls, foundation, sewer, plumbing, heating, wiring , AC, driveways, and sidewalks, except when such repairs are necessitated by misuse or negligence of Tenant, its agents, employees or invitees, and all other maintenance responsibilities by law. We consider holes in the walls misuse and abuse and we do not allow this."
If I might add that the tenant did not file the form to have an inspector come out, it was done by the guest. As I (the guest) was having a good yelling with the Landlord, I mentioned how the average tenant is never going to know what needs to be up to standard before she moves in and that just in this particular case someone the tenant does know has knowledge on the matter.
My questions for you (the community) is:
Did I have the right to make the complaint to the city to have an inspector come out (not in terms of morals but legal)?
Should the landlord have taken care of all possible health and safety code violations before even thinking about moving someone new in to this apartment room?
What sort of legal trouble could the landlord be in with the department of health and safety, assuming the inspector only saw the tenants apartment? And, if the inspector saw the entire exterior of the complex leading to the tenants apartment (which includes stair-wells that are not lit and can be pitch black, elevators that have no permits, broken lighting, broken internal roofing, and exterior catwalks of the building that are slanted and not level walking surfaces.
What would be a good-step to take in order to have this apartment up to standard and how it should have been upon initial move-in without having a landlord trying to evict the tenant?
Should there be any reimbursement with the apartment?
and of course as anything else comes to mind I will be sure post it
Thank you all!