To make a long story short, I entered into a rental agreement with two friends, and the set term of occupancy, as written and agreed upon by the landlord in the lease agreement, began on August 15th, a requirement that all three of us agreed upon due to our collectively having nowhere to live near the Ohio State campus. I arrived in Ohio on August 10th, only to find out a few days later that the landlord had emailed one of my roommates and stated that move-in would not be possible until the 1st of Sept. In essence, I had arrived in Ohio with all of my valuables and a cat, ready to move in on the 15th, only to be basically told that I was effectively homeless for in excess of 15 days.
My question is: can I take the landlord to small claims court and require compensation for living expenses incurred as a result of his breach of contract? Luckily, I found a relatively cheap motel (although I didn't go dirt cheap due to my having a pet and valuables), and have been in contact with the landlord, only to be told that he will not pay anything. Thanks in advance for the assistance, I am losing my mind without a stable living situation.