Warranty of Habitability in Missouri

Last Updated: May 16, 2023 by Elizabeth Souza

In Missouri, a landlord’s obligation for providing a habitable living space is primarily governed by Missouri Rev. Stat. §441.234. 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.

Quick Facts Answer
Landlord Responsibilities No Statute
Time Limit for Repairs “Reasonable” Time (Usually Within 14 Days)
Tenant Recourse Options
  • Withhold Rent: No
  • Repair & Deduct: Yes, Less Than $300 or ½ Month’s Rent

Applicable Dwelling Types in Missouri

The implied warranty of habitability in Missouri 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?
Single family Yes
Multi-family Yes
Fraternities/Sororities/Clubs Not addressed
RV parks Yes
Mobile home parks Only if person in mobile home is a renter, not owner.
Condos Not addressed
Hotels/Motels No

Landlord Responsibilities in Missouri

The following chart lists possible landlord responsibilities when it comes to habitability.  Not all of them are requirements in Missouri, 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. Not addressed
Ensure the roof, walls, etc., are completely waterproofed and there are no leaks. Not addressed
Provide hot and cold running water. Not addressed
Provide working HVAC equipment. Not addressed
Provide working plumbing and electrical wiring/outlets/ lighting. Not addressed
Provide working gas lines if used for utilities/cooking Yes
Provide working sanitation facilities (bathtub/shower, toilet). Yes
Provide a trash can (for trash pickup services). Not addressed
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 Not addressed
Provide a mailbox. Not addressed
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

As you can see, Missouri state law doesn’t lay out specific landlord responsibilities. However, landlords are required to comply with all housing codes, so you should check with the municipality in which the rental property is located to determine what specific responsibilities landlords may have regarding habitability.

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Former Methamphetamine Houses

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Repairs, Recourse & Retaliation in Missouri

If a rental property is in violation of the implied warranty of habitability in Missouri, state laws outline how the repair process works, what tenants can do if repairs aren’t made, and how tenants are protected against retaliating landlords.

Requesting Repairs in Missouri

Missouri tenants have to request repairs by giving the landlord “reasonable” notice of an issue, which could be verbal or written. However, written notice is preferable, as it is required for the statutory repair and deduct remedy and also helps prove timing and contents of a repair notice in general.

Renter’s Rights if Repairs Aren’t Made in Missouri

Missouri tenants have limited rights if the landlord doesn’t make timely repairs. They can follow a procedure to repair and deduct for lesser repairs. For major repairs, they can withhold rent (usually by paying into rent escrow) or in some severe cases claim constructive eviction and move out. Read More

Landlord Retaliation in Missouri

Missouri law isn’t clear on the extent to which landlords are allowed to retaliate against tenants. Missouri courts recognize retaliatory eviction as a defense, but haven’t provided guidance on what factors weigh toward or against finding retaliation. Retaliatory eviction also isn’t available as a defense in most eviction cases.