Important Things to Know About Landlord-Tenant Law

Landlord-tenant law refers to the rights and duties  landlords and tenants have. These include the following:

For Landlords

  • Landlords must deliver possession of the unit to the tenant. This happens in cases when former tenants refuse to move out of the unit.
  • Covenant of quiet enjoyment. As long as the tenant fulfills the conditions of a lease, then a landlord might not enter the unit, and can only do so in an emergency.
  • Warranty of habitability. HG says the landlord has an obligation to provide tenants with safe living conditions. If there are any repairs or replacements necessary, the landlord must cover those costs. If that’s not possible, then the landlord must cancel the lease.

For Tenants

  • Duty to pay rent. You need to pay your rent on time.
  • Comply with lease. You must ensure you agree and uphold the conditions of the lease, including fulfilling the lock-in period.
  • Duty to care and maintain for the unit. As a tenant, you promise to take care of and maintain the unit.

Common Legal Woes

  • If the tenant fails to uphold the contract or repeatedly violates terms of the lease, such as bringing pets into a “no pets” unit or smoking in a non-smoking apartment, then those are violations and could be grounds for eviction.
  • Property damage. If a tenant damages the unit in any way, the landlord is allowed to take out the deposit to help compensate for the costs. The landlord may also evict the tenant as a result.
  • If a landlord wrongfully evicts a tenant, then the tenant can counter that eviction notice with a lawsuit.

Whatever legal trouble you’re in, whether you’re the aggrieved landlord or beleaguered tenant, hiring a tenant lawyer can help you. Tenant law can be complex. With a lawyer by your side, you’ll know what steps to take to fight that eviction notice or get rid of a bad tenant.

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