In Idaho, a landlord’s obligation for providing a habitable living space is primarily governed by ID Code § 6-320. This legal requirement, commonly known as the “implied warranty of habitability”, also outlines the rights of tenants when repairs are not made in a timely manner.
Applicable Dwelling Types in Idaho
The implied warranty of habitability in Idaho does not apply to all types of dwellings. See the table below for which are and aren’t included.
|Dwelling Type||Landlord/Tenant Laws Apply?|
|Fraternities/Sororities/Clubs||Not specifically addressed|
|RV parks||Not specifically addressed|
|Mobile home parks||Not specifically addressed|
|Condos||Not specifically addressed|
Mobile home parks and condos have their own separate set of landlord/tenant rules and will not be addressed in this article.
Landlord Responsibilities in Idaho
The following chart lists possible landlord responsibilities when it comes to habitability. Not all of them are requirements in Idaho, as indicated below.
Note: Some of the below items may not be addressed at the state level but may be addressed on a county or city level. Check your local housing codes to see which additional requirements may apply.
|Habitability Issue||Landlord Responsibility?|
|Provide windows and doors that are in good repair.||Yes|
|Ensure the roof, walls, etc., are completely waterproofed and there are no leaks.||Yes|
|Provide hot and cold running water.||Yes|
|Provide working HVAC equipment.||Yes|
|Provide working plumbing and electrical wiring/outlets/ lighting.||Yes|
|Provide working gas lines if used for utilities/cooking||Not addressed|
|Provide working sanitation facilities (bathtub/shower, toilet).||Yes|
|Provide a trash can (for trash pickup services).||Yes|
|Ensure that any stairs and railings are safe.||Not addressed|
|Ensure that all floors are in good condition and safe.||Not addressed|
|Provide fire exits that are usable, safe, and clean.||Not addressed|
|Ensure storage areas, including garages and basements, do not house combustible materials.||Not addressed|
|Provide working smoke detectors||Yes|
|Provide a mailbox.||No|
|Provide working wiring for one telephone jack.||Not addressed|
|Provide working kitchen appliances.||Not addressed|
|Provide working carbon monoxide detector.||Not addressed|
|Provide a working washer/dryer.||Not addressed|
Tenant’s Right to Repairs in Idaho
For all residential properties, landlords are required to make and pay for any repairs to make the unit livable that are not caused by the tenant.
- Sending Notice – Tenants must put repair requests in writing to the landlord by personal delivery, certified mail or leaving it with an employee at the landlord’s place of business. The landlord has three days to make any necessary repairs after receiving written notice.
- Landlord Access – Tenants are not required to give the landlord access to the property to make necessary repairs unless it is written into the lease agreement.
Tenant’s Options if Repairs Aren’t Made in Idaho
If repairs aren’t made in a timely manner, the tenant has a few possible options for resolving the issue.
- Withhold Rent – Idaho landlord tenant law does not allow tenant to withhold rent in response to habitability issues.
- Repair and Deduct – The only case a tenant in Idaho can repair and deduct is for installation and repair of smoke detectors after giving the landlord three days’ notice. Tenant has the right to install necessary smoke detectors and deduct the costs from the following month’s rent.
- Lawsuit – Tenants do have the right to take legal actions to enforce their right if the landlord doesn’t make the necessary repairs three days after receiving written notice.
Landlord Retaliation in Idaho
Landlords may not evict a tenant for requesting that repairs be made or because the tenant joins a tenants’ association.
A landlord shall not retaliate by the following actions:
- Terminate a tenancy.
- Refuse to renew a tenancy.
- Increase rent.
- Decrease services.
- Threaten to bring an action for repossession.