Does a Landlord Have to Exterminate for Roaches?
Unless agreed otherwise in writing, the landlord has a duty to provide for extermination of roaches. A landlord is generally obligated to supply possession of the premises as agreed in the lease. The premises must meet minimum standards of habitability including compliance with applicable building codes. Weatherizing, locks, running water, working plumbing, heating and cooling, pest control, and other basics must be in place. In Florida, if the property is not livable (through no fault of your own), you may be able to move out. You may not have to pay rent after you move, even though you have a lease. By law, for a place to be unlivable or "untenantable," the problem must be substantial and may include problems with waterproofing and weatherproofing; plumbing; running water; heat; electrical lighting; unclean grounds and building; roaches and rodents; garbage; or floors, stairs and railings that are in disrepair.
Please see the following FL statute:
83.51 Landlord's obligation to maintain premises. —
(1) The landlord at all times during the tenancy shall:
(a) Comply with the requirements of applicable building, housing, and
health codes; or
(b) Where there are no applicable building, housing, or health codes,
maintain the roofs, windows, screens, doors, floors, steps, porches,
exterior walls, foundations, and all other structural components in good
repair and capable of resisting normal forces and loads and the plumbing in
reasonable working condition. However, the landlord shall not be required
to maintain a mobile home or other structure owned by the tenant.
The landlord's obligations under this subsection may be altered or
modified in writing with respect to a single-family home or duplex.
(2)(a) Unless otherwise agreed in writing, in addition to the
requirements of subsection (1), the landlord of a dwelling unit other
than a single-family home or duplex shall, at all times during the
tenancy, make reasonable provisions for:
1. The extermination of rats, mice, roaches, ants, wood-destroying
organisms, and bedbugs. When vacation of the premises is required for such
extermination, the landlord shall not be liable for damages but shall abate
the rent. The tenant shall be required to temporarily vacate the premises
for a period of time not to exceed 4 days, on 7 days' written notice, if
necessary, for extermination pursuant to this subparagraph.
2. Locks and keys.
3. The clean and safe condition of common areas.
4. Garbage removal and outside receptacles therefor.
5. Functioning facilities for heat during winter, running water, and hot
(b) Unless otherwise agreed in writing, at the commencement of the
tenancy of a single-family home or duplex, the landlord shall install
working smoke detection devices. As used in this paragraph, the term "smoke
detection device" means an electrical or battery-operated device which
detects visible or invisible particles of combustion and which is listed by
Underwriters Laboratories, Inc., Factory Mutual Laboratories, Inc., or any
other nationally recognized testing laboratory using nationally accepted
(c) Nothing in this part authorizes the tenant to raise a noncompliance
by the landlord with this subsection as a defense to an action for
possession under s. 83.59.
(d) This subsection shall not apply to a mobile home owned by a tenant.
(e) Nothing contained in this subsection prohibits the landlord from
providing in the rental agreement that the tenant is obligated to pay costs
or charges for garbage removal, water, fuel, or utilities.
(3) If the duty imposed by subsection (1) is the same or greater than any
duty imposed by subsection (2), the landlord's duty is determined by
(4) The landlord is not responsible to the tenant under this section for
conditions created or caused by the negligent or wrongful act or omission
of the tenant, a member of the tenant's family, or other person on the
premises with the tenant's consent.