As a property owner, it’s important to know and understand your rights as you rent out your property. Even if your building is being handled by a property management company, you’ll still want to be aware the rights you have under the Uniform Residential Landlord and Tenant Act (URLTA).
Although specific landlord rights are mostly spelled out depending on the state where you live, there are a few areas that remain the same throughout the United States. Those renting out properties in more than one state will likely be especially happy to know these.
In this article:
Health and Safety
A few of your rights can be best explained by the duties required from your tenants. For example, they must follow all health and safety codes set by local authorities. If a tenant is doing something that causes the property to be unhealthy or unsafe for those involved, such as not property cleaning the showers, toilet, or sinks, or not throwing away their trash, it is your right to take action.
This also goes for using appliances and equipment in the home. If the tenant is misusing everyday objects, such as an oven or even an elevator, for inappropriate purposes, your are able to do something about it. The same goes for damages to the property directly.
Disturbance of the peace is also included here. You are able to take action if a tenant is doing something that disturbs his or her neighbors.
Advertisements and Applications
You can also advertise when there is a vacancy on your property—and you should! But avoid using any discriminatory language when wording your advertisement.
The same goes for rental applications. It’s expected that you would take applications from interested potential tenants, but don’t ask about anything that could suggest discrimination, such as age, race, or any disabilities. However, it is fine to ask if the person has a past of evictions or drug use, and to ask for credit and employment history.
Your rights as a landlord are put in place to protect you as you make rules and monitor your property. Remember always keep rules the same for all tenants and to avoid discrimination on advertisements and applications. If you are unsure about a certain right you have as a property owner, check with your property manager about specifics.