Resources for Tenants:
What do I do if I have environmental health concerns in my unit?
Our office cannot test nor recommend anyone to test for mold or lead. If we can physically see the mold, we will contact the owner/agent and require them to bleach and/or use mold killing paint on any surface that will allow. For further information regarding environmental health issues, please contact the Washtenaw County Health Department
How to File a Complaint
If you believe there are code violations within your unit/property you may contact our office to file a complaint. We cannot advise anyone on the legal rights to stop payments of rent or termination of rent and lease contracts. We do not have the ability to test for mold, radon, etc. (see Health & Safety page for more information). The inspectors can only cite items they can see upon inspection. The process is as follows:
1. You must first contact your landlord/management company and give them adequate time to make the necessary corrections. We cannot accept a complaint if you have not contacted your landlord.
2. If the concern has is not resolved by the landlord in a timely manner the tenant may contact Janet Farrell via email or at 734-794-6000, ext. 42680 to request a complaint form. The following information will be required: Name, phone number and address of complainant; specific issues you feel are a code violation (please be specific, as the inspector can only inspecte what is on the complaint); and the time frame in which you notified you landlord.
3. Our office will notify the landlord of the complaint. The landlord will be required to submit a plan of action to be completed by the deadline (typically within 24 hours for life-safety issues or 72 hours for non-emergency issues). The landlord will be required to notify our office, within the timeframe provided, to report the status of the issue(s).
4. We will then contact the complainant to verify the issue(s) are resolved.
5. If there is still a problem and/or the violation persist, an inspector will contact the complainant to conduct an inspection.
a. There is a fee assessed to the landlord for each inspection conducted where valid code violations are found.
6. If the violation is still not corrected within the time frame provided by the inspector, the property will be posted as not habitable (see section on not habitable postings for more information) until the violation(s) are remedied.
7. If you believe there is a leasing ordinance violation complete the Leasing Ordinance Complaint formLeasing Ordinance Complaint.pdf and send via email to Janet Farrell.
What does it mean if my property is posted as not habitable?
Our office will post a property as not habitable for a few possible reasons.
- The owner/agent failed to meet the inspector at a designated inspection two or more times.
- The owner/agent failed to make the necessary corrections cited on an inspection after two or more reinspections.
- The owner/agent has failed to register the property as rental after repeated attempts to contact them via US Postal Service.
Pursuant to Section 8:516(4) of the Ann Arbor Municipal Code: "No person shall lease or otherwise make a dwelling or rooming unit available for occupancy if a Certificate of Compliance is not in effect for the unit". Failure to secure the appropriate Certificate of Compliance may result in enforcement against the property. This includes any type of advertisement, listing, or occupying the property as a rental.
To find out why your unit was posted, see the Guide to eTRAKiT
page for instructions on accessing inspection reports.
As a tenant, you are not required to vacate the unit/building if posted for the above reasons, but you may elect to put your rent money in escrow until the posting is removed by a City of Ann Arbor Rental Housing Inspector. We advise that you contact private legal services about this process
prior to placing rent into escrow.
You may not remove the posting under any circumstances.
Very rarely, a building/unit is posted for life safety violations that may require the tenant(s) to vacate the premises. You will be notified by our office if this is the case.
How do I verify there are permits obtained for work or that there have been inspections on my rental property?
You can check all permit and rental information on the city's online permit tracking system, eTRAKiT.
1. Click on "search permits" in the Permits box.
2. If you know the permit number of the specific permit you wish to view, you can search by permit number. If not, you can search by address. (TIP: when searching by address, do not use any punctuation or ST, DR, or AVE). For instance, for 301 E. Huron St., type only "301 E Huron" and click search.
3. The results will contain all permits pulled under that address. All building permit records go back to April 2001. All rental records ("CR" = Certified Rental) have attachments dating back to the 1980s.
4. Select the permit you wish to view.