Here’s what you need to know to ask your landlord to fix it.

Having a problem with your rental furnace? Non-emergency problems can be inspected by the Neighborhood Service Authority. (Her NNS file photo by Andrea Waxman)

Whether the heater is broken or it’s a water or mold problem, the landlord needs to fix it.

But if that doesn’t happen, there are several ways to complete the repair.

get it in writing

Shawanna Lindenberg, Community Advocates Housing Manager, first submit a request for service (or repair/complaint) with the date you would like the owner or property manager to respond.

Community Advocates is a community-based organization that provides advocacy and services to help low-income families and individuals in Milwaukee meet their basic needs.

no reply? Here’s what you can do:

After doing that step, there are a few other things you can do if there is no response.

For rent withholding, you can contact your Neighborhood Service Authority or Community Advocate. In this method, instead of paying rent to the owner, you pay the department. Payments will be held in an escrow account until the owner complies with the breach.

Note: Tenants withholding rent on their own can lead to eviction.

In a 2021 interview, Nick Toman, an attorney with the Milwaukee Legal Aid Society, told NNS, “Rentees cannot withhold rent on their own.” “

What to do if the situation escalates

If a problem leads to an eviction attempt, you can contact Mediate Milwaukee.

According to Amy Koltz, Executive Director of Mediate Milwaukee, mediators act as intermediaries to resolve disputes without disputes.

If you live in an unsafe or unhealthy condition, Lindenberg suggests contacting the Neighborhood Service Authority immediately.

She said tenants who called the department and subsequently had a repair order issued to the property would typically be protected from retaliation from their landlord for six months. If so, you should contact the Neighborhood Service Authority.

Make sure you are ready

In the event of major repairs, you should prepare for the worst-case scenario.

“We strongly encourage tenants with more serious concerns (plumbing, sewage, electricity, heating, etc.) to prepare their units for closure,” Lindenberg said. This means arranging for families to work together until they can evacuate and secure a new location.”

If you believe you are in such a situation, call 2-1-1 and contact IMPACT 211 for emergency housing information. IMPACT 211 is a central access point for those who need help restoring stability.

Resources for Tenants

The Department of Neighborhood Services has a set of resources for any tenant you need. Learn more about rent withholding and other measures. Call us at 414-286-2268.

Community advocates: You can support rent assistance, rent withholding, and a range of other services. Call us at 414-449-4777.

Mediation Milwaukee has mediators to improve communication with landlords or property owners. You can contact us at 414-939-8800.

DNS HomeSAFE Programs: This is a series of short, in-depth presentations on common home topics such as electrical and fire safety. Rent withholding system, rent reduction and mediation, illegal dumping.

Resources for landlords and homeowners

Social Development Boards can help with lead reduction, weathering, and other housing-related issues. You can call 414-906-2700.

The Metropolitan Milwaukee Fair Housing Council helps homeowners protect themselves from mortgage and foreclosure scams and predatory mortgages. Call us at 414-278-1240.

Housing Resources Inc. offers homeowners counseling and foreclosure avoidance programs. Call us at 414-461-6330.

Acts Housing provides counseling and real estate agent representation to help low-income families transition from renting to buying a home. Call us at 414-933-2215.

City of Milwaukee’s Department of Housing: The Department of Housing’s Section 32 program provides guidance through the homebuying process and sells refurbished homes to low-income residents. The agency offers several grants and subsidies to current Housing Authority homeowners for down payment assistance and a permissible second mortgage. Call us at 414-286-5405.

Bronzeville Resident Homeownership Initiative: The Bronzeville Homebuyer Assistance Program provides loans of up to $25,000 and technical assistance for residents purchasing city-owned foreclosed homes in Bronzeville Initiative areas. Call us at 414-286-5608.

Common Ground-Milwaukee Rising: Milwaukee Rising restores and sells foreclosed properties in the Sherman Park area. Matching grants of up to $5,000 are available for homeowners seeking repairs and improvements. For more information, please contact Bob Connolly at [email protected].

The Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA) also offers resources for homebuyers.

Housing Help connects you directly to city homeowner resources.

Take Root Milwaukee offers free or low-cost services to help you buy, maintain and repair your home. Please call 414-921-4149 for more information.

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