With the heatwave over the country this week, and the mild rant about A/C from one Breakfast Flake on Cat Country, tonight I was sitting in front of my landlord-provided air conditioning and thought... did they have to do that? The answer might surprise you... or you'll say "Duh".

Tenant Rights

In all states, there is essentially a Bill of Tenant Rights that landlords (and scummy property management companies) must follow, to ensure you are treated like a human... and not a piece of trash... for paying rent.

According to iPropertyManagement, in Montana, your landlord must provide the following:

  • Heating between October 1st and May 1st
    • The landlord is obligated to fix any issues with heating between these dates.
  • Hot Water
    • You likely have to pay the water bill, however.
  • Garbage Containers/Removal
    • Again, you likely are on the hook for the bill.
  • Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Detectors
  • Mold Removal
  • Pest Control
  • Kitchen Appliances
    • Only if they were provided at the start of your lease, then the landlord must keep them in working order.

Sadly, as you may notice, this does NOT include cooling during the summer months. Though our temps don't get TOO high here in Montana, I've seen some high temps... and the highest ever recorded (according to CurrentResults.com) was 110 degrees Fahrenheit on July 20th, 1921.

What States Require A/C?

Honestly, you can probably guess which ones they are:

  • Arizona
  • Florida
  • Kansas
  • Nevada

And, not only is the landlord required to provide some sort of AC, they are required to maintain them in a reasonable timeframe.

What To Do Without A/C

For my first few years here in Billings, I lived in a basement apartment... with zero A/C... and windows I refused to open as the driveway was right there... allowing dirt, exhaust, and more to come right in.

So, what did I do? Well, I bought fans. And blackout curtains. Which kept that apartment around 78-80 degrees no matter how hot it was outside.

My Best Suggestion

One suggestion I'd offer, if you have the spare funds, is to look at the portable A/C units. They mount into your window with a big hose, and the unit itself wheels around in your house (not far, but enough to turn it and such) to cool things down.

Those units work great, and back when I spent 3 years in Baker... really did the job well. Check out your local Ace Hardware and see what they have. Better than sweating so much that you have a pool in your chair.

What are your thoughts?

Are you living without A/C? Are you lucky to have a landlord (that isn't a scumlord) that provides your unit with it? Let us know on App Chat or on Facebook.

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