Housing Habitability Issues

Blog Title

Habitability Checklist

Habitability Checklist This list is a guide to help you identify all of the things that can affect habitability, based upon Civil Code §1941.1 and Health and Safety Code §17920.3.

Due to the variety of circumstances which can arise in a given rental situation, all of the possible conditions can’t be listed, so you should use your own judgment to determine whether a particular condition you are concerned with is like one of those listed here. Plainly stated, just because it’s not on this list doesn’t mean it isn’t an uninhabitable one, particularly if it adversely affects living there.


Hot and cold water supplied

Hot water heated enough

Adequate water pressure

For both hot and cold?

To all faucets?

To washing machines?

No bursts

Clean water

Free of rust, discoloration

Odor free

No bad taste [eg, sewage]

Adequate drainage

No backups into sink/tub

Fast drainage

in all sinks

in shower/bathtub

Garbage disposal flows

Bathtub drain closes fully

Sink stoppers close fully

fill and flush quickly

No backups, overflows

Flushing mechanism works

Don’t leak at all

From water line to wall

At the base on the floor

From cracks or joints

Faucets on sinks and tub

firmly placed and unbroken

work easily on and off

Completely stop [no drips]

Leaky plumbing

Faucets don’t leak

when used [from stem]

Onto or under counter

Drains don’t leak under

Dishwasher doesn’t leak

Clothes washer doesn’t leak

Hoses -hot and cold intake

Drainage hose

Machine itself

Broken pipes in ceiling


Adequate number of windows

No cracks or broken glass

No gaps in panes or windows

Weather sealing [no drafts]

Windows that open

Open easily and don’t stick

Stay open as needed

Close completely and latch

Ground floor windows lock

All have window screens

No holes or tears

Frames unbent, unbroken


Solid in frame [not loose]

All open without sticking

All easily close securely

All have working knobs

All have working latches

Exterior doors have deadbolts

Weather stripping [no drafts]

Threshold is solid, unbroken

No broken glass [exterior]

Sliding glass doors

Slide without effort

Close and lock securely

No tears or holes in screen

Screen door secure in track

Screen door latches closed

No cracks or broken glass

Screen doors on Exteriors

Properly mounted

Closing device works well

Frame unbent and unbroken

No holes or tears in screen

Opens and closes properly



Ceilings all secure

No holes, flaking, looseness

No leaks, stains from leaks

Not collapsing or soft

Walls all secure

No holes or gaps to outside

No weak, damp or soft spots

Protected surface near water

Shower area waterproofed

Adequate heat insulation

Paint is not flaking or peeling, and is not lead-based

Stairways and rails secure

Earthquake retrofitting done

No roof leaks from rain

Weather-sealed walls [ie, dry]

Sealed underground walls

Unflooded basement areas

Common Areas

Working security gates, etc.

Clean swimming pool

Adequate exterior lighting

Working intercom system

Walkways with trip hazards

Working, lit laundry room

Adequate trash bins/pickup

No trash/debris/junk


Health: Infestations of mice, rats cockroaches, ants, spiders, termites, bees, wasps, hornets, flies, pigeons, mosquitos, etc.

Mold, mildew, mushrooms in any interior part of the unit

Unsanitary water, sewage

Noxious fumes from sewer74