State College Landlords Burn Their Tenants in More Ways Than One

Horror stories involving terrible landlords or apartment management companies are all too common in State College. Between ridiculous high rent prices and broken, but never fixed, kitchen appliances, it’s safe to say some landlords and management companies don’t keep their properties in the best shape. But it turns out exuberant fees and poor upkeep aren’t the only ways State College landlords are burning their tenants.

One Penn State student claims the shower faucet in his apartment hasn’t been updated since the building was constructed in 1969, causing him to be scalded in the shower and suffer second and third-degree burns. While it’s not uncommon for buildings in State College to go decades before receiving renovations, this former tenant claims his shower is now in violation of the International Plumbing Code, which may or may not be the worst selling book in history.

Jason Miller, of Novi, Michigan, is suing the landlord of Twin Towers apartment complex, located in the 1200 block of South Allen Street. He is seeking $75,000 in compensatory and punitive damages from Michael Falk, of Falk Realty and Falk Realty Management Inc., according to the Centre Daily Times.

In the lawsuit filed in U.S. Middle District Court, Miller says the water was so hot that it caused him to faint in the shower on March 5. The shower was not equipped with an anti-scalding device.

The landlord set the water temperature at 135 degrees, which is higher than what is allowed. The International Plumbing Code requires a valve that prevents temperatures from rising above 120 degrees, Miller’s attorney wrote.

In the court documents, Miller says his landlord failed to disclose a dangerous situation to his tenants and did nothing to fix the problem.

The cold water knob could not be reached for comment for this story.

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Jessica Tully

Jessica Tully is a first-year law student at Penn State's Dickinson School of Law. She graduated in May 2014 with degrees in journalism and political science.

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