The Hawaii Residential Landlord-Tenant Code, Chapter 521 of the Hawaii Revised Statutes (HRS) Section 64 grants tenants the following rights when repairs to a rental property are needed:
Tenant’s Remedy for Repair
The tenant should follow these steps to correct any defective condition on the premises which is in material noncompliance with the rental agreement or with the landlord’s obligations to supply and maintain fit premises (see Hawaii Landlord Rental Property Obligations). The tenant may:
- Notify the landlord with a written list of things that need repairing (a sample letter to a landlord requesting repairs follows this section). If the tenant does not include the particular defective condition on this list, the tenant cannot require the landlord to make repairs within six months. Because the tenant can only deduct up to three month’s rent for every six-month period, the tenant must decide which repairs are the most important.
- The landlord must start making the repairs requested by the tenant within 12 business days after receiving the written notice and must try to have the repairs completed as soon as possible. If the landlord cannot start making the repairs within 12 business days because of reasons beyond the landlord’s control, the tenant must be informed of the reason for the delay and when the landlord expects the repairs to be started.
- If the landlord does not do the repairs as specified above, the tenant may make repairs and deduct up to $500 from the following month’s rent for the cost of repairs. If the tenant makes the repairs, or has them made, the tenant must give the landlord copies of all receipts connected with the repair work.
Return to Hawaii Landlord-Tenant Laws.