Warranty of Habitability in Utah

Last Updated: August 16, 2023 by Elizabeth Souza

In Utah, a landlord’s obligation for providing a habitable living space is primarily governed by Utah Code § 57-22-4. 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 Cold/Hot Water, HVAC, Plumbing, Electrical, Sanitation Facilities
Time Limit for Repairs 24 Hours, 3 Calendar Days, or 10 Calendar Days
Tenant Recourse Options
  • Withhold Rent: No
  • Repair & Deduct: Yes
  • Substitute Housing: Yes, if it’s less than 2 months’ rent
  • Rent Abatement: Yes

Applicable Dwelling Types in Utah

The implied warranty of habitability in Utah 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 specifically addressed
RV parks Not specifically addressed
Mobile home parks Not specifically addressed
Condos Not specifically addressed
Hotels/Motels Not specifically addressed

Additionally, rental agreements are not allowed to include any provisions that waive the tenant’s right to live in a habitable residence.

Landlord Responsibilities in Utah

The following chart lists possible landlord responsibilities when it comes to habitability.  Not all of them are requirements in Utah, 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. 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). Multi-family units
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

Landlords in Utah must maintain their rental units so that they are fit for human habitation. All common areas must be in a safe and sanitary condition.

Read more

Meth Production

Landlords are required to notify potential tenants if a rental unit is currently contaminated after being used in the production of methamphetamines.

If the property was previously repaired/restored and all contamination removed or mitigated, then the landlord is not required to inform tenants the property was previously used in the production of methamphetamines.

Repairs, Recourse & Retaliation in Utah

If a rental property is in violation of the implied warranty of habitability in Utah, 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 Utah

Utah tenants must usually request repairs by providing the landlord written notice about the issue that needs repair. Non-written notice is acceptable in emergencies. The notice must contain all of the following:

  • A description of each condition that needs repair.
  • A statement of how long the landlord has to begin substantial repairs for each condition (24 hours for emergencies, 3 days for legal noncompliance, 10 days for lease noncompliance).
  • The renter’s choice of remedy if repairs aren’t made. The renter has two choices, canceling the lease (“rent abatement”) or repairing and deducting from the rent.
  • Permission for the landlord to enter the rental property and make repairs.

The notice can be delivered through any method agreed in the lease. It can also be personally delivered, mailed through registered or certified mail, or posted conspicuously on the landlord’s residence or place of business.

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

Utah renters have the right to repairs for a variety of issues, including things that impact health and safety. To exercise their right, renters usually have to give the landlord the special written notice described above (except in emergencies), and wait 1-10 days for the landlord to begin substantial repairs.

If the issue isn’t fixed by the landlord in a timely way, the renter can either stop rent payments and move out (“rent abatement”), or do repairs and deduct from the rent (“repair and deduct”). The available remedy depends on what the tenant declared in the original repair request. Read More

Landlord Retaliation in Utah