A tenant in North Carolina has the right to live in habitable conditions, and landlords must maintain systems such as the plumbing, ventilation and electrical systems, according to Laws.com. Landlords must also ensure provision of clean drinking water, updated smoke detectors and safe common areas.
When heating, air conditioning and other systems need repair, it is the landlord's responsibility to put things in good working order regardless of whether or not the tenant has a lease, explains eHow. When a landlord refuses to make a repair, the tenant may make the repair and deduct the cost from the rent with written permission from the landlord. When a landlord refuses to make a necessary repair, the tenant can go to small claims court to receive permission to make the repair.
North Carolina law bans discrimination against tenants based on race, color, religion, natural origin or sex, states eHow. In addition, landlords cannot discriminate based on physical or mental handicaps or children living in the home. A blind tenant has the right to keep a seeing eye dog in a rental, even if the property does not normally permit animals. North Carolina law also places limits on the amounts of security deposits landlords can require, and landlords must return security deposits within 30 days.