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You rent, your AC breaks…now what?

RICHMOND, Va (WTVR) — If you thought it was hot outside Friday, imagine what it’s like being indoors without air conditioning.

“It’s over 90 something degrees in the house,” says Mary Wysocki. “Try taking three showers and still coming out dripping buckets of sweat or having your service dog who screams every time you leave because he’s stuck in the heat.”

Wysocki’s air conditioner has been broken for weeks and she’s been waiting patiently for her landlord to fix it.

She is one of several people who called the CBS 6 newsroom this week, wondering what rights they have if a landlord doesn’t repair a broken AC unit.

We took your questions to Christie Marrah, an attorney with the Virginia Poverty Law Center.

She says if your housing or apartment unit was equipped with AC when you moved in, your landlord is required to maintain and fix it.

Marrah says, don’t just call, make sure you put your request in writing with a reasonable deadline to fix it.

“Right now, when it’s so hot, particularly when there are young children or elderly people in the (apartment) unit; five  days, seven days or something like that is reasonable,” says Marrah.

If it’s not fixed, Marrah says, you can take your landlord to court.

Wysocki says, if her landlord doesn’t come through before August, she will take legal action.

Click on the video for Lorenzo Hall’s report.

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