The laws for tenants and landlords were developed for serving as a blueprint to the interaction. They were intended to cater to the obligations and rights of both tenants and landlords. Although the law of every state will change a bit, there are some common services and duties that all the landlords have to perform. Here are some fundamental obligations all the landlords have to follow regardless of where they hail from and where the rental property lies. The legal duties of a landlord are subject to the landlord-tenant law and there are five parts to it. Here they are.
- Managing prepaid rent or security deposit: The initial obligation for all the landlords is the security deposit. All landlords have the right to charge a security deposit to the tenant even though the sum is never owned by the landlord. Rather, this amount is a kind of security for the landlords in case the tenant fails to pay the rent on time. It can also be used as a security against damage to the property or a breach of the lease agreement. All landlords are under obligation to follow local and statewide laws for the security deposit.
- Disclosing the property owner information: Another obligation for all the landlords is to disclose certain info about the property owner to the tenant. This is the responsibility of the person that signed the lease agreement with the tenant. This could be about the landlord, building owner, or other individuals acting on the behalf of the landlord as an agent. You need to disclose things such as names and addresses of the individuals that will have the right to collect rent, manage the building, address the complaints, and issue rents. This disclosure has to be in writing and the purpose behind it is to make sure that the tenant is aware of the right contact person.
- Delivering the possession of the unit: The next obligation for a landlord under the law is, delivery of the possession of his unit to the tenant. It means having the unit vacant for a moving-in date for the tenant. This is according to the lease agreement. In case the unit is not available to the tenant on this date, tenants can take legal actions against the landlord for failing to honor the agreement. In case there is any squatter in the property or someone that does not have the right to be there legally, a landlord can take legal actions against the individual. You can also work with a property management company such as MDSquared Property Group for managing the other requirements and regulations.
- Maintenance of the property: The landlord also must maintain the unit. It includes maintaining the property clean, habitable, and safe. A landlord has to adhere to all the building codes, maintain the common areas, complete all the required repairs, and maintain the necessary services such as electricity, heating, and plumbing in proper working order. The landlord also has to provide running water and trash receptacles for the tenant’s use.
- Limitation of liability: Apart from these the landlord is also liable for certain other obligations under the landlord-tenant law. He must adhere to the lease agreement terms. The landlord is relieved from this liability in several states after they have sold the property notified the tenant in writing about the new management and ownership. The new owner of the property becomes liable for sticking to the lease agreement terms and following the landlord-tenant law in the region. However, as the landlord has collected the security deposit from the tenant earlier, he will still be responsible for it. He can either transfer the deposit to the new owner or return it to the tenant.
You need to ensure that you verify with the local and state landlord-tenant laws. This is for finding out about additional and other different obligations that are applicable in your region. Keep in mind that landlords are obligated to follow all these laws otherwise, they may face legal consequences for the failure to do so. The tenant has to be aware of the persons responsible for different activities such as maintenance requests, rent collection, and other legal problems in case there are any.