We live in a 1st floor 1 bedroomed apartment that have no windows that open is this legal ??

Asked by Dawn, 60657 Thu Aug 5, 2010

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Robert Armac…, , Conroe, TX
Sun Aug 8, 2010
If windows are present then the only issue is the fact that they don't open, simply ask that they be replaced, it is a fire code violation no matter what part of the country your in. The minimum opening height shall be 24" and the minimum opening width at 20" with the sill no more than 44" from finished floor, according to the 06' international code council.
Call your local building department for size requirements in your area, could be if the windows size is in compliance for the year the building was built then the owner will only be required to replace fixed pane windows with ones that will open.
Hope this helps
1 vote
David Dorfman, Agent, Neptune, NJ
Fri Aug 6, 2010
Typically a bedroom can not be a "legal bedroom" without a window. Older homes window sizes may be smaller then today's standard bedroom windows. Look up the National Building Code guides - BOCA referred as.

The correct size today for a bedroom window really has to accomodate a firemen dressed in full gear - different if a doublehung (slide up and down) vs a casement window.

In general, basement apartments, with only a "basement" window 4 from the ground are illegal, but you see them everywhere.

In many towns in the us, a rental unit must be inspected and issued a certificate of occupancy. Not everywhere, but it should. Also, you should check for smoke detectors and in case of a fire at your front door - how will get out - or will you die stuck against a wall?

These are the pitfalls of renting and landlording. Be careful and Be safe.
Web Reference:  http://www.rentlaw.com
0 votes
Suzanne Hami…, Agent, Orland Park, IL
Fri Aug 6, 2010
Dawn, most housing is required to have at least a small percentage - usually 2% light, natural air ventilation and egress to outside large enough for an adult.

My suggestion is to call the building department for the city, town or county you live in and ask them what the requirements are. If your landlord is violating the law, they can help make it comply.

Good luck.
0 votes
John Moustis, Other Pro, Chicago, IL
Thu Aug 5, 2010
Hello Dawn & thanks for contacting me.
Having windows that don't open in a residential living unit on a first floor bedroom like an apartment is usually not common, except is some highrise buildings. I am not an attorney so I don't want to express legal or not. In some apartments it may be allowed where there are windows that are fixed that don't open. Any new construction building more than likely would require a bedroom window to open or some other means of escape in case of fire. You should consult your local municipality for their local code in your area.
Thank you and have a good day.
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