Louisiana residents are sleeping in tents because of damaged housing, lawmaker says
People who have been displaced by Hurricane Ida have been sleeping in tents and “using the wreckage to create their own type of temporary building” since the storm made landfall last month, according to Speaker Pro Tempore Tanner Magee, who spoke during a parliamentary session on Monday. The Republican representative for Terrebonne and Lafourche added, “When I say tent, I’m not talking about some army tent; I’m talking about the Walmart kind tent that you would have had in your house.” “That’s the environment in which they’re living.” According to him, around 13,000 homes in Louisiana’s Bayou area have been devastated, with 60 percent of the dwellings in south Terrebonne Parish being destroyed.
“We’re hearing from Lake Charles that they were without temporary housing for a year (after Hurricanes Laura and Delta), and I’m not sure how that can be considered anything other than a humanitarian disaster,” Magee stated.
Following Hurricane Ida, hundreds of renters in Houma were informed without prior notice that they would be evicted from their residences due to storm damage.
The city of New Orleans has been reserved.
Mary, is fully booked,” he remarked.
After the hurricane, Tammy Esponge, from the Apartment Association of Louisiana, stated that they provided counsel to apartment complexes that were badly damaged or unusable “to provide tenants a fair length of time to allow those individuals to locate a place to live.” “Apart from the fact that they are not following the guidelines, what these owners are doing is awful,” Esponge stated.
- During service outages following Hurricane Ida, legislators have threatened to terminate their contract with AT T.
- The day after Hurricane Ida wreaked havoc on the area, just 60% of AT T’s network in Louisiana was operational.
- Joe Mapes, a lobbyist for AT T, was brought to testify on the company’s behalf at the meeting, but he was unable to answer to many of the senators’ queries because of a technical problem.
Karen Carter Peterson (D-New Orleans) informed Mapes that AT T’s “avoidance mode” is “very disrespectful” given that the company has a contract with the state “to provide for a fundamental service.” It’s not fair that we’re talking about something as fundamental as life and death,” Peterson added.
- As she pointed out, “we are still in the midst of hurricane season.” INSTANTLY RECEIVE THE DAY’S MAIN HEADLINES IN YOUR INBOX.
- When Hurricanes Laura, Delta, and Zeta struck the state of Louisiana in 2020, the corporation was hit with a bill of $2.1 billion, which Entergy Louisiana intends to pass along to customers in the form of higher rates.
- That does not even take into account the devastation caused by Hurricane Ida, which struck in August.
- Bryan Fontenot, R-Thibodaux, believes that Entergy’s stockholders should utilize a portion of their earnings to bear the weight of the losses.
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Your Landlord Bears Responsibility for your Safety
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As a tenant in an apartment building or rental house, you may not be aware that your lease also grants you the right to demand a particular degree of safety and security from the property management. In order to be able to sleep soundly at night, you should not have to be concerned that a negligent landlord has put you at danger of an accident or harm. While living in a rental house, if you are wounded or assaulted, you may be able to file a lawsuit against your landlord or apartment complex to seek compensation for your injuries and expenses.
Premises liability basics
The obligation of a landlord lies under the umbrella term of premises liability. To a certain extent (and depending on the circumstances), whomever owns a property is liable for any accidents that visitors or renters experience on the property. When it comes to licensees and invitees, a variety of variables are taken into consideration in order to evaluate reasonableness:
- What was the individual doing on the property
- How were they utilizing the property
- And why were they there. What factors contributed to the accident’s foreseeability? Did the property’s owner make reasonable measures to warn of potential hazards?
Slip and falls in and around the home
Slip and fall incidents are frequently the result of negligence on the part of property managers or owners. Example: If your landlord fails to provide sufficient lighting or remove impediments from a stairwell or corridor and you are hurt as a result of the fall, the landlord is at least partially responsible for your injuries. Every year, thousands of individuals suffer injuries ranging from a simple scratch to becoming paralyzed as a result of slip and fall incidents, which can occur anywhere.
Every year, more than eight million people go to the emergency department because of falls-related injuries.
According to the National Safety Council, the following parts of the house are the most often affected by falls:
- Locations with uneven terrain
- Areas with a high concentration of people
A few of the most often addressed issues linked with falling are as follows:
- Broken hips and pelvic bones, particularly in the elderly population
- Arms and legs that have been broken
- Back and spinal cord injuries, which are among the most painful and difficult to recover from
- Traumatic brain injury
- And spinal cord injury Injuries to the head can result in persistent brain damage such as seizures, memory loss, or reduced cognitive functioning. Injuries to the neck
- Ligaments in the wrist, foot, or leg have been torn.
Proving fault in a slipfall injury
Depending on your landlord’s insurance policy, your injuries may be covered automatically, or you may need to retain the services of a personal injury attorney to assist you with your claim. There are specified instances in which an owner or landlord is liable for a fall that happens on his or her property, as defined by the legislation.
Evidence establishing that either an employee or the landlord/building owner was responsible for your injuries is required to hold a property owner accountable for your injuries.
- Was made aware of a potential threat yet did nothing about it
- Because a location presented an evident risk, you should have known about it
- Otherwise, you were personally responsible for your accident because you created a dangerous walking surface by spilling liquids, neglecting to repair old or broken flooring, or some other ways.
It might be difficult to establish liability. At the end of the day, your attorney will have to substantiate your claim of carelessness.
Could you be at fault for your injury?
It is your responsibility to demonstrate your innocence in order for the property owner or landlord to be held accountable for your accident. In the majority of instances, the law holds all legally responsible adults responsibility for their own personal safety. Stories about “wet floor” signs are an example of this, because adults should be able to read and heed such warnings, as opposed to children. In a personal injury case, you will want to do the following:
- Confirm that you were going with caution and that you were not skipping, leaping, or otherwise acting carelessly
- Make certain that you walked with caution and kept an eye on where you were going. Make ensure that you were not trespassing or in a prohibited location before proceeding.
If you are satisfied that you could not have averted the fall, you will need to demonstrate that your landlord or the property owner could have stopped it from happening. Depending on whether your injury was caused by a slip and fall or a trip and fall, the process of proving this may change. In the event of a trip, you should inquire as follows:
- Was the object that I stumbled over there on purpose, and should I have been aware of its presence
- And Has flooring that has been improperly built or maintained caused me to trip? Is it possible that the object that I tripped over could have been kept in a more secure location?
For both trips and slips, the following questions should be asked:
- A notice about the potential hazard should have been placed, if at all possible. Was there enough illumination in the area to avoid such mishaps from occurring?
Personal safety and security
Owners of apartment complexes are also accountable for the personnel that work on the property to keep it up and running. A landlord or apartment complex management company, for example, might be held accountable if one of its employees causes injury to residents or their property. Additionally, if the apartment complex fails to offer sufficient security measures for residents who are later the victims of a crime in their own home, there may be grounds for a civil lawsuit against the complex.
Plaintiffs who have sued their landlords have received huge monetary damages from juries, particularly when many crimes have been committed on the premises or when the landlord failed to take reasonable safeguards to protect the tenants.
Employees are the landlord’s responsibility
Landlords are responsible for conducting thorough background checks on all workers and renters who work on their premises. Otherwise, they may be held accountable if they are found to have committed a crime. Colleen M. Quinn is a partner with the law firm LockeQuinn in Richmond, Virginia, and serves as the director of the Women’s Injury Law Center. A client of the Center was raped, stabbed, and left to die by a maintenance worker at her apartment complex, and the Center was able to give assistance to her.
In the end, both corporations were found to be guilty, and the lady got a $3 million payout, which she used to pay for treatment and other rehabilitation requirements, including the purchase of an apartment in a more secure section of town equipped with a surveillance system.
While compensation may be available in a criminal trial, Colleen said that it is frequently insignificant when compared to the potential outcome of a civil action.
The author points out that “a civil lawyer can ensure that every stone has been turned over and that all remedies have been investigated.”
The eggshell skull rule
According to the “eggshell skull rule,” the defendant’s responsibility will not be lowered just because the plaintiff is more susceptible to damage than the usual plaintiff. For example, a tenant suing the landlord of an apartment complex for medical costs and lost earnings following a slip and fall. After a week of vacation, John returns to his apartment complex where he lives with his family. It is the midst of winter, and a snowfall has resulted in a thick coating of ice forming on the stairs of the apartment building.
- As John is heading up the stairs, he loses his footing and falls to the ground on his side.
- His injuries necessitates an emergency room visit, and he is forced to miss two weeks of work as a result.
- Because an otherwise healthy individual would have received small scrapes as a result of the fall, John’s landlord claims that he should only be liable for compensating him for the damages connected with minor scrapes.
- Learn more about the eggshell skull rule in this article.
Other landlord responsibilities
There are also additional scenarios in which landlords might be held accountable for damages, including mold growth in the property, the illegal use of lead paint, and the injury that you or your family suffers as a result of other tenants engaging in criminal activities such as drug sales. The physical agony, mental stress, and medical expenditures that result from a fall or criminal activity in your rental house can continue for the rest of your life. If the scenario was brought about by the landlord’s carelessness, whether deliberate or not, you may be able to recover compensation by filing a personal injury claim against the landlord in court.
Did you file a complaint against your landlord in court?
Articles about landlords and carelessness are particularly popular.
- When are landlords accountable for the damage of their tenants
- Is it possible to sue for mold in an apartment building? Is it possible to hold an apartment complex accountable for poor security? Is it possible to sue my landlord for enabling a hostile living environment to develop?
How to Handle Angry Tenants Who Damage Your Property on Purpose
AuthorJanuary 13, 2018CategoriesPosted on January 13, 2018 Having a hostile, enraged tenant who ruins the property because they are upset about eviction proceedings is every landlord’s greatest nightmare—but it happens all the time. Taking advantage of the situation, tenants like him believe they have nothing to lose and take vengeance on the cruel landlord by inflicting thousands of dollars in structural damage and damaging or stealing equipment. Unhappy tenants can inflict significant damage to their rental property, including shattered windows, carpet shredding, punching holes in the walls, and the removal of appliances.
We chose to tackle this issue in a video extract on how to take control of the situation using the ICE Method to help you understand what we mean. (after the viewing of the video above) Let’s employ the ICE Method to deal with an irate renter who is trashing your rental property.
Steps to take when tenant damages rental property:
Due to loud sounds they’re hearing in the downstairs unit, your above tenant has contacted you to inform you that the below tenant is ruining the rental property. You have a lease in place with the renter in the downstairs apartment that isn’t due to expire for another 7 months. Let’s put this situation through its paces using the ICE Method.
The first step is to determine the nature of the problem. Do you have proof that the renter is causing damage to the property on a consistent basis? Are you agitated and prone to making rash decisions as a result of your emotions? Have you experienced any problems with the renter in question in the past, and how will this affect your attitude to the tenant in the future?
Does this scenario have anything to do with your ability to influence it, or not? In this specific instance, it is dependent on the landlord. Many times, landlords become enraged, but they do not take anything to rectify the situation in their favor. Spending time fretting about the circumstance is counterproductive; instead, take action to get control of the situation. One of the best places to start is to get into the rental and look it over for yourself. To terminate the lease, you must provide the renter with a 24-hour notice.
When you go over the rental, make a note of any damages (see below for more information) and analyze the condition.
You’d want to get rid of this problem. According to this hypothetical situation, eviction is not necessarily a possibility. Get to the bottom of the dilemma by identifying and removing the root cause of its manifestation. Is the renter causing you problems? The possibility exists that they were playing Grand Theft Auto: Vice City at a high volume and the upstairs neighbor assumed they were destroying items. Or… maybe they are harming the property. If this is the case, make a commitment to resolving the situation.
A situation with a disruptive renter is unquestionably a challenging one to navigate.
In this scenario the optimum time is ASAP because you don’t want more harm being done to your rental.
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Get Your Emotions In Check
When you’re in a scenario where you feel taken advantage of, it’s difficult to maintain your composure. However, when landlords make judgments based on their emotions, it may be quite costly. You should avoid locking your renter out of the rental property, as you may wind up having to reimburse them for each day that they are unable to access the property. Take a time to collect your thoughts and emotions so that you can proceed with the right processes. If you choose to do this, you may join our private Facebook group of landlords and ask questions specific to your circumstances.
For access to the community, simply go to the purchase page and get a password to participate.
Eric will add you to the community as soon as he is able.
All that is required is that queries in the group remain productive and not simply a forum to trash renters.
What Do I Do When A Tenant Damages The Rental Property?
In episode 30 of our podcast, we cover a different approaches you might take to deal with this sad circumstance. The subjects covered include “Cash for Keys” as well as how to properly document the damages using the SODA form. You may get a SODA form template from the program notes for episode30, which is about what to do if a renter causes damage to your rental property.
Make Sure You Document Everything
Regardless of the infraction, if something bizarre occurs on your property, make certain that you document it correctly as soon as possible. Here are some pointers on how to go about it:
Take Pictures and Video
Immediately after discovering the problem, get your video camera and still camera and document the damage by filming and photographing every inch of the rental property. This record will be useful in determining the extent of the destruction in the event of a future legal case. Incorporate a time stamp and a date stamp onto the photos if applicable. You can see how to add a timestamp in this video that we produced for your convenience. To learn more, please visit this page. iPhone Timestamp App (formerly known as iPhone Timer) To learn more, please visit this page.
Gather Bids for Repairs
Once you have determined how much it will cost to restore the device to its former state, call in professionals as soon as possible to offer estimates on the expense of doing so. Keep copies of the bids and subsequent invoices in case you need to use them in court. You should move fast to get the rental property ready to rent out again in order to keep your financial losses to a minimum.
Deduct from the Security Deposit
When it comes to refunding the tenant’s security deposit, don’t forget to adhere to the rules and regulations established by your state. While the cost of repairs in this situation will more than likely exceed the amount of the deposit, you are still obligated to provide the renter an itemized list of damages, with the price of repairs removed from the deposit, within a certain number of days of receiving the deposit back. The form you’ll be filling out is referred to as a SODA form, which stands for Security Deposit Disposition form.
It is critical that you complete this form and deliver it to the tenant within the timeframe specified by the state. Some states (such as Washington) require that this be completed within 14 days of the lease’s expiration or eviction being served.
Law Enforcement and the Courts
Even after you’ve documented everything, you’ll still need to seek legal assistance. If you decide to initiate legal action, the following are some suggestions:
Call Your Local Police
In order to report the damage and destruction, you should always call your local police department. This assists you with formal documentation to document the occurrence and determine whether there is sufficient evidence to warrant an arrest. It’s important to remember that just because you make a police complaint does not imply that you will be arrested or that you will face criminal charges. If the damage is substantial enough, and a large number of costly objects have been stolen, the authorities may decide that it is a criminal case and bring charges against the perpetrators.
If there are any other unlawful aspects associated with the damage, such as the production of meth in the unit, the police are more likely to intervene and take action.
Seek Restitution via Civil Court
In order to report damage and destruction, you should always contact your local law enforcement agency. This assists you in completing formal documentation to document the occurrence and determine whether there is sufficient evidence to warrant an investigation and subsequent arrests. It is important to note that just filing a police complaint does not imply that you will be arrested or that you will face criminal charges. It is possible that the authorities will consider the incident to be a criminal case and pursue charges if the damage is substantial enough and a large number of costly objects were stolen.
A higher likelihood of police action exists when there are additional unlawful aspects associated with the damage, such as meth production in the unit.
Contact Your Insurance Company
If the damage is significant enough, your final step of action is to call your insurance carrier for assistance. You may be eligible for reimbursement for a portion or the entire cost of repairing damages if certain requirements are met. In addition, your insurance provider will want a copy of the police report, so make sure you have several on hand. Your insurance agent should be able to work with you to determine exactly what further you need to do to complete the claim process.
Landlord Nightmares in the News
While every landlord wishes that the scenario of an angry renter never occurs in his or her rental property, sadly, there are instances in which tenants seek retaliation against the landlord. Just a few examples of this all-too-common occurrence are shown below: According to the landlord, evicted tenants seek vengeance by destroying property. Following the service of eviction proceedings by a landlord to her tenants due to nonpayment of rent, the tenants demolished the property. You can read the rest of the story here.
You can read the rest of the story here.
In the case of an adolescent renter who has been authorized by a social services agency, the landlord confronts an uphill struggle in obtaining reimbursement for the damage done to his rental property. You can read the rest of the story here.
How Can Landlords Avoid This?
Unfortunately, there isn’t much you can do to prevent events like this from occurring when an enraged renter is determined to cause damage. One alternative that is becoming increasingly common is known as “cash for keys,” or when a landlord provides money to renters in exchange for their immediate departure from the property. This method may tempt renters who are experiencing financial difficulties to leave without causing harm in order to receive some fast cash. Do you have any examples of the most heinous tenant retaliation you’ve experienced or heard about?
Landlord Rights When Tenant Destroys Property
When renters destroy their property, a landlord has legal recourse, which is generally shown in the form of financial compensation. Documenting the damage and serving a notice to the renter are the initial steps in the process. Upon eviction or abandonment of the property, a landlord may be able to deduct money from the security deposit left with the property. If the amount of damages exceeds the amount of money in the security deposit, the landlord may file a lawsuit against the renter in small claims court.
Tenant Damage Property Eviction
When a renter causes damage to property, the landlord has the legal right to remove the tenant. You’ll want to make certain that you follow all of the necessary eviction procedures, which includes issuing a formal eviction notice to the tenant. If a tenant causes significant damage to a rental property, they are in violation of the contract and may be evicted as a result of this violation. Avoid doing so, or else further damage might be done during this time period. –
Top 10 Landlord-Tenant Laws to Remember
Laws governing rental housing are put in place to safeguard both the landlord and the tenant in the landlord-tenant relationship. The understanding and observance of federal, state, and municipal rules is essential for both landlords and tenants. Owners of rental properties want to run a lucrative company while also protecting their financial investment. Tenants desire to be able to live peacefully in their rented house while still maintaining their personal rights. Understanding your legal rights and responsibilities as a landlord will assist you in protecting yourself, your rental company, and your investment property from harm.
Federal Landlord-Tenant Laws
The Fair Housing Act and the Fair Credit Reporting Act are two of the most important federal rules that apply to all landlords and property managers. The Fair Housing Act forbids discrimination in housing based on race, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, familial status, or physical or mental impairment. The Fair Housing Act applies to more than just leasing; it also applies to advertising, prohibiting landlords from selling their houses to particular groups of people. When a landlord uses a tenant’s credit history for screening reasons, the Fair Credit Reporting Act specifies the manner in which the landlord may do so.
State Laws About Rentals
The majority of state legislation governing rental properties and tenant rights are concerned with practical issues. Things like the rights and obligations of tenants and landlords, what terms and conditions can be included in a lease, how to terminate a lease and how evictions must be handled are all covered in detail. The amount of security deposits that a landlord can demand, how those monies can lawfully be handled, and how property managers must utilize trust accounts to collect rental revenue are all governed by state legislation.
A Landlord’s Legal Responsibility
It is extremely important to get familiar with the landlord-tenant rules that apply in your state and locality before renting a property. Ignorance of the law is no defense, and you may be held liable for failing to comply with state laws even if you were not aware of their existence at the time. When it comes to performing your own research on state landlord-tenant legislation, Nolo is a fantastic resource to start with. In the United States, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is in charge of regulations governing discrimination as well as other government concerns that may impact your renters.
Important Landlord Tenant Laws
- Be sure to comply with Fair Housing regulations while advertising your rental property, screening new renters, or implementing apartment rules. Make sure that all acts or policies apply to everyone (with accompanying proof), and that they cannot be perceived as harming certain individuals but not others.
Legal Lease Document
- The provision of a lease agreement, as well as any other legal documentation, is all part of a landlord’s responsibilities. It is the landlord’s obligation to ensure that the rental agreement is properly prepared and complies with all applicable laws. Rental durations, monthly rental prices, and the names of the tenants must all be properly stated. In some areas, legal disclosures, such as security deposit information, are required to be included in the document. In addition, the lease should include all necessary conditions, such as a provision recommending tenants to get renters’ insurance.
Laws about Required Disclosures
- Tenants must be informed of essential state laws, specific landlord regulations, and information concerning the rental property, either in the lease agreement or in another written document—typically before the tenant moves in—under the terms of their lease agreement. Landlords are required by federal law to inform renters about the dangers of lead-based paint. The disclosures that may be required in your lease agreement vary by state, but some examples include: mold notice, notification of sexual offenders, recent fatalities, lead-based paint disclosure, meth contamination, and any other potential health or safety issues.
Laws About Providing a Safe Environment
- Landlords are responsible for ensuring that the rental unit is in a safe and livable condition at all times. The property must be free of major defects, and all appliances, fixtures, plumbing, and heating that have been supplied must be in full working condition. A pest- and insect-free environment is required on the site. However, in most areas, landlords can escape this by writing in the rental agreement that pest management is the renter’s duty
- In certain places, landlords are liable for getting infestations under control even if they arise after renters have moved in.
Laws About Making Repairs
- Tenants are responsible for notifying the landlord of any repairs that are required, as specified in the lease agreement. Responding to these allegations and executing repairs in a timely way are among the obligations of landlords. If a landlord fails to complete a repair that has an adverse effect on a tenant’s health or safety, such as a broken heating unit in cold weather, a tenant may be entitled to withhold rent money.
Laws About Security Deposits
- In the majority of lease agreements, a tenant is required to pay a security deposit to cover any damage caused by them or if they fail to pay their rent on time. In order to keep the monies from security deposits, the landlord must utilize them to satisfy default rent payments or to repair property damage. A landlord is required to furnish the renter with an itemized list of deductions, and he or she is also required to return the remaining amount of the deposit to the tenant. For example, failing to produce an itemized statement or failure to refund the unused amount of the security deposit may result in a landlord holding more than the monies held in trust for the tenant’s benefit
Laws About a Renters Right to Privacy
- The majority of landlord-tenant rules defend a tenant’s right to quiet enjoyment, which means they have the privilege of staying in a house without being bothered by other people. Once a tenant has taken possession of a property, the landlord is prohibited from interfering with that right in any way. Because of this, it is the landlord’s obligation to guarantee that he or she does not enter the rental property without providing adequate notice (typically 24 – 48 hours, unless in emergencies). In order for a landlord to be permitted to enter the rental property, the entry must occur at a reasonable time of day and for a legitimate cause.
Laws About Abandoned Tenant Property:
- When a renter vacates a home and leaves personal belongings behind, the landlord is required to regard the property as abandoned property. The landlord must notify the tenant of how to claim the property, the cost of storage, where to claim the goods, and how long the tenant has to claim the things. The landlord must also tell the tenant of how to claim the property. If the property goes unclaimed for an extended period of time and is worth more than a particular sum, the landlord may sell the property in a public auction. If the property is worth less than the sum established by the state, the landlord has the option of keeping the property or disposing of it.
Laws About Known Criminal Activity
- It is the responsibility of the landlord to notify the police if he or she becomes aware of any criminal conduct going place in one of their rental properties. Illegal tenant behavior might include drug usage or distribution, as well as far more serious offenses. A landlord is normally responsible for protecting the community surrounding his rental property from the criminal conduct of his tenants, and if unlawful activities occur at the property, he or she may be held guilty or subject to a number of legal penalties.
Laws About Safety Features
- To a certain extent, it is your responsibility to safeguard your renters. Landlords are required to offer certain safety precautions in various regions. Fire and carbon monoxide detectors, fire extinguishers, front door peepholes, deadbolt locks on external doors, and window locks are examples of devices that can be installed.
In addition, there is a bonus law:
Unlawful detainers are removed from rental properties through the use of legal action by the landlord. Every state has legislation that governs the eviction process in some way. For nonpayment of rent, failure to vacate the premises after a lease agreement has expired, violation of a provision in the rental contract, or causing damage to the property that results in a substantial decrease in the value of the property, a landlord may evict a tenant. For more information, see eviction. A landlord must go through the legal eviction procedure before he or she may evict a tenant without cause.
It may be possible for tenants to recover damages from landlords who seek to remove them from their property without first obtaining a court order.
Unlawful detainers are removed from rental properties via the use of legal means by the landlord. Laws governing the eviction procedure exist in every state. For nonpayment of rent, failure to vacate the premises after a lease agreement has expired, violation of a provision of the rental contract, or causing damage to the property that results in a significant decrease in the value of the property, a landlord may evict a tenant. For more information, see eviction. Landlords are required to follow the legal eviction procedure before they may kick a renter out of their home.
It may be possible for tenants to recover damages from landlords who seek to remove them from their home without first obtaining a court order.
Related Reading For You:
- It is necessary for landlords to provide certain information to their tenants, as outlined in the state guide. Unlawful use of criminal records for tenant screening
- Fair Housing Update – Illegal use of criminal records for tenant screening
- Roommates are subject to five different rental laws that you may not be aware of.
Tenants’ guide to eviction
If you have not been paying your rent, or if you or persons under your control have caused substantial damage to your flat, or if you have broken the conditions of your lease, your landlord may seek to evict you. Your landlord must first provide you with a “Notice to Quit” before you can terminate your tenancy. If your landlord decides to terminate your tenancy due to non-payment of rent, he or she must issue you a “14-Day Notice to Quit” (M.G.L. c.186, 11 and 12), which you must accept. Other terminations will be specified in your lease; normally, a seven-day notice period will be required in these cases.
Tenants at will
If your landlord decides to terminate your tenancy due to non-payment of rent, he or she must provide you a “14-Day Notice to Quit” (M.G.L. c. 186, 12). For any other reason, you must be provided written notice 30 days in advance, or one full rental period in advance, whichever is the greater length of time. As long as this is the first notice you have gotten in the previous 12 months, if you are about to be evicted because you have not paid rent, you may be able to prevent eviction by paying the rent due within 10 days of getting this notice.
Landlords who have tenants who get rent subsidies are required to follow the eviction processes outlined in their rent subsidy contract and lease agreement with the tenants.
Summary process and complaint
Following the expiration of the notification period, the landlord is required to provide to you a “Summary Process and Complaint.” This letter notifies you in writing that your landlord intends to take legal action against you. It will specify the date of the eviction hearing as well as the deadline by which the Answer must be submitted.
Answer, judgment, appeal and execution
This is your written answer in which you explain why you should not be evicted from your home. It also provides you with the opportunity to file counterclaims against your landlord, which may include violations of the Health and Sanitary Code, retaliation, harassment, security deposit violations, and illegal eviction procedures, among others. Both the court and the landlord must receive your Answer by Monday before your scheduled court appearance. Keep a copy of this document for your records.
Judgment and Appeal
If you are unsuccessful in your case, you have the right to appeal the decision and request a fresh hearing. If you choose to appeal, you must file a Notice of Appeal within 10 days of the day on which the verdict is delivered. In most cases, an appeal bond is necessary, but if you cannot afford one or if you have a non-frivolous defense, you may be able to get one canceled.
The execution serves as the judge’s eviction order; the landlord will not be able to physically evict you until you have this document. If a physical eviction is permitted, the court will provide the landlord the right to execute the judgment 10 days after it has been entered. It is necessary for you to get written notice of the date and time of the physical eviction at least 48 hours before it will take place. You must vacate the flat on the date specified in the 48-hour notice. The execution may be used by the landlord at any point throughout the three-month term.
- If the eviction was not your fault and you are unable to find a new place to live in good faith, you may be able to persuade a court to issue you a Stay of Execution, which will enable you to remain in your apartment for up to six months after the eviction.
- If you are being evicted because you have failed to pay your rent, you do not have any legal grounds to obtain a stay of execution.
- You must vacate the premises on or before the date specified in the execution order.
- If your goods are being stored, the mover should create a detailed inventory of everything that will be kept in storage.
- This means that the storage firm will have a lien on your property, which may be enforced by selling the items you have stored.
- It is not necessary to pay back rent in order to have your furniture removed from storage.
- Before you leave your apartment, you should consider arranging an inspection with your landlord to ensure that everything is in working order.
- If you handed the landlord a security deposit, make sure you look over the Statement of Condition document.
- Also, you may wish to photograph and date the state of the flat on the day you plan to vacate it.
Security deposit issues may be resolved with the assistance of these images. You should give a forwarding address for the landlord if you paid a security deposit or the previous month’s rent so that the landlord may send you any interest that is owing to you.
Key Actions for Moving out
Rent payments, complaints, communication with your landlord and attempts at repair, as well as other significant events and documentation relevant to your rental, should all be kept in excellent record by you and your landlord. These will assist you in resolving issues both in and out of court.
Additional Resources for Documents
According to the law, your landlord is required to correct situations that endanger the physical health and safety of regular renters. These might include things such as roaches, rodents, sewage leaks, roof leaks, defective electrical wiring, and natural wear and use on the unit, to name a few examples (such as ripped carpeting or broken flooring). Landlords are not obligated to provide security guards for their properties. Depending on where you reside, local housing regulations may require landlords to adhere to stricter maintenance requirements.
Landlords are also responsible for repairing damage caused by emergency events such as fires, hailstorms, hurricanes, and flooding.
If your apartment becomes uninhabitable as a result of a fire, for example, you may be entitled to terminate your lease without incurring any penalties if you submit your request in writing.
Can my landlord refuse to make repairs?
Yes, your landlord is not obligated to cover the cost of repairs:
- It is true that your landlord is not liable for repairs:
Can my landlord evict me if I ask for repairs?
No, your landlord is not allowed to retaliate against you because you requested repairs that are necessary for your health and safety. If you pay your rent on time and comply with the lease requirements, your landlord will not be able to evict you, cancel your lease, or increase your rent for the next 6 months following your request to repair (unless the increase is scheduled or it affects all of the units).
How do I ask my landlord for repairs?
Ensure that you pay your rent on time so that your landlord does not attempt to evict you rather than performing the necessary repairs.
- Take images of the conditions that need to be improved
- Send a written notification to your landlord informing him of the repairs. Alternatively, if you send it certified mail with return receipt requested, you just have to do it once. You will be required to send a second notice if this is not the case. Make a detailed list of the repairs that are required. Maintain a copy of the written notification as well as the photographs
- Make sure you give the landlord a fair amount of time to complete repairs, at least 7 days, unless the repair is an emergency that necessitates a faster response (for example, a roof leak or sewage backup)
If you need to seek repairs, the Austin Tenants Council’s Self Help Repair Packet can assist you.
Can I make my own repairs?
Most of the time, it is not a good idea to attempt to repair the situation yourself or to hire a repair person of your choosing. In certain instances, special laws are in effect. It is possible that you will not get paid for your time and money. If you cause further damage or deterioration, you may be required to pay a higher amount than you anticipated.
My written request for repairs has been ignored. What now?
If your landlord refuses to comply with your request or continues to put off the repairs, you should:
- Make a second written request to your landlord, this time requesting a written explanation for why repairs have not yet been completed. In the event that you submitted the first notification via certified mail, you are not required to send a second notice. If the repairs are still not completed, the following choices are available:
- You have the right to cancel your lease if repairs are not completed within a reasonable amount of time, you give adequate notice, and you owe no rent. Provide formal notice of your intention to terminate your lease and the date on which you intend to evacuate the unit. You have the right to receive a refund for any rent that has already been paid for the days that you will not be present. You are entitled to a return of your security deposit, less any damages that the landlord may be entitled to deduct under the terms of your lease. Take your case to court: Bring a lawsuit against your landlord to force him to perform the repairs and compensate you for the losses. A court can order your landlord to make repairs, cut your rent from the day you requested repairs, award you damages for failing to fix, damages equal to one month’s rent plus $500, court expenses, and attorney’s fees, and compel your landlord to make repairs and pay your damages. In the Justice of the Peace court, you will not be required to hire an attorney, and the court should hear your case as soon as ten days after you file your lawsuit
- You can also sue in the Superior Court of the State of New York.
I have to go to Court. Are there any forms I can use?
Yes. Forms for the Texas Justice Court Training Center are available here. It is possible to utilize these forms in Small Claims Court (commonly known as “Justice Court”), which hears the vast majority of landlord-tenant disputes.
For additional information on the measures you can take, see the Austin Tenants Council’s Self-Help Repair Packet and the article, How to Sue in Small Claims Court for more information.
Where can I read the law on repairs?
Repair rights are described in detail in Texas Property Code sections 92.052 through 92.061. It also outlines the steps that renters must take in order to assert their rights. The document also describes what recourse is available to a tenant if the landlord fails to perform the necessary repairs. It also specifies that renters must provide adequate notice in order to be eligible for repair services.
CLICK HERE for further information on this subject.
The Austin Tenants Council’s Self-Help Repair Packet may be found by clicking here (includes Texas repair request forms)
It differs from homeownership in that the renter must rely on someone else to take care of any maintenance. It is possible that the tenant will not be able to make improvements to the property without consent. A renter’s rights and duties are mutually exclusive. Many individuals find that renting is a wonderful option for maintaining a healthy home environment, both indoors and out, and this is true for many reasons. Whether you rent a house, an apartment, a duplex, a mobile home, or a cabin, you may adhere to the seven principles of healthy houses.
What are my responsibilities as a renter?
It differs from homeownership in that the renter must rely on someone else to take care of necessary maintenance. Renters may not be able to make alterations to their rental property unless they obtain authorization from the property manager. Having both rights and obligations as a tenant is important. A healthy home environment, both indoors and out, may be maintained through the use of a rental property for many individuals. It doesn’t matter if you live in a house, apartment, duplex, trailer, or cabin; you may adhere to the seven healthy home principles no matter where you rent your property.
What can I do to keep my rental home a healthy home?
When it comes to keeping a healthy house, there are eight fundamental guidelines to follow.
- Make sure it’s dry. – Damp houses are a breeding ground for mites, roaches, rats, and molds. Make sure it’s clean as well. – Keeping dwellings clean can assist to decrease bug infestations and exposure to toxins. Maintain a pest-free environment. – Exposure to mice and cockroaches has been shown to increase the frequency of asthma episodes. Improper pesticide treatments for insect infestations might exacerbate existing health problems, as pesticide residues in the house can be harmful to the occupants’ health. Keep it in a safe place. – Home is where the vast majority of children’s injuries take place. Injuries from household items, burns, and poisonings are the most common causes of residential injuries among children, with falls being the most common. Continue to use it Contaminant-Free. – Prevent exposure to lead, radon, carbon monoxide, pesticides, asbestos, and secondhand tobacco smoke in the environment. Keep in mind that indoor exposure is frequently higher than outside exposure. Maintain enough ventilation. – According to research, boosting the amount of fresh air in a home is beneficial to respiratory health. Maintain it on a regular basis. – Homes that are not properly maintained are at danger of becoming unhealthy. Keep things under control in terms of temperature. Extreme heat or cold can endanger the lives of those who live in homes that do not maintain sufficient temperature regulation.
If you follow these guidelines, you will be able to maintain a safe and healthy home environment. If you are experiencing difficulty adhering to any of these principles, other sections of this website will provide you with knowledge and tools to assist you further.
What if I have an unhealthy condition in my rental home?
Depending on the circumstances, it may be your obligation to make repairs or it may be your landlord’s responsibility to make repairs if you live in an unhealthy state in your rental house. Examine the terms of your rental lease agreement. Comply with any regulations for cleanliness or safety that may have been established. As soon as you see a problem, contact your landlord to report it. It is preferable to put your complaints in writing. This serves as a permanent record of your complaints.
The length of term may be specified in your leasing agreement.
This may include more written complaints or a face-to-face meeting.
Landlord-tenant disputes are considered civil matters in most jurisdictions.
The majority of landlord and tenant issues are outside of the purview of the Health Department’s jurisdiction. These questions would be addressed by a civil court judge who would interpret the applicable statute. There are various initiatives that provide assistance to tenants.
What does the landlord tenant act say?
The Uniform Residential Landlord and Tenant Act is found in Chapter 28 of Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 66, Chapter 28. It stipulates that the landlord must do the following:
- Conform to relevant building and housing rules that have a substantial impact on health and safety
- Make all repairs and do everything is necessary to put and keep the premises in a fit and livable state
- Maintain the cleanliness and safety of all common areas of the premises
- And, in multi-unit complexes with four (4) or more units, provide and maintain appropriate receptacles and conveniences for the removal of ashes, garbage, rubbish, and other waste from common points of collection, as defined in 66-28-401(3)
- And, in multi-unit complexes with four (4) or more units, provide and maintain appropriate receptacles and conveniences for the removal of ashes, The Landlord Tenant Act is only applicable in counties with a population more than 75,000 people, according to state law. Anderson, Blount, Bradley, Davidson, Greene, Hamilton, Knox, Madison, Maury, Montgomery, Putnam, Rutherford, Sevier, Shelby, Sullivan, Sumner, Washington, Williamson, or Wilson are among the counties affected by this decision. Tenants in these counties have the right to submit a complaint with the Tennessee Consumer Protection Division. The filing of a complaint does not result in a visit to your house. Consumer Affairs will make an attempt to contact the landlord in order to assist in mediating the matter. It is possible to have mediation take place if the landlord agrees to it. If a landlord refuses to participate in mediation, the conventional course of action is to file a lawsuit.
What are my rights as a renter?
Renters, according to the Legal Aid Society, have the right to live in a safe and secure environment while maintaining their dignity. Your rights as a renter may differ based on where you live and which county you reside in. In order to better understand your rights as a tenant, the Legal Aid Society has provided you with a helpful fact sheet. The Legal Aid Society can be reached through the methods given below. If your rental house requires an emergency repair in order to be safe and healthy, such as a repair to the heating, gas, lighting, water, sewage, plumbing, or air conditioning, you should notify your landlord immediately.
- In certain counties, you may be able to utilize a portion of your rent money to pay for these urgent repairs.
- It is not possible to be evicted from your rented house.
- The landlord is not allowed to change the locks or turn off your utilities in order to force you to leave.
- For example, if you did anything harmful or threatening, your landlord just needs to give you three (3) days notice before you must vacate the premises.
- If you have any legal issues concerning your housing situation, you should speak with an attorney or a legal services organization.
- For further information, please contact the office closest to you.
- Call the Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands at 1-800-238-1443 for further information.
- Their phone number is 1-865-637-0484.
- Their phone number is 1-800-372-8346.
- Their phone number is 1-888-207-6386.
- As a tenant, you have certain rights and responsibilities, which are explained in these information sheets from the Legal Aid Society.
Fact sheets for renters and tentants during COVID-19
The Department of Housing and Urban Development in the United States has released these fact sheets.
What about Property Maintenance Codes?
Property Upkeep Codes, often known as Building and Safety Codes, are minimal criteria for property maintenance. Codes can be applied to either residential or non-residential properties, or to a combination of the two. Inspections for building codes can take place at any time, however they are most prevalent during the construction or restoration of a building. Building codes are used to safeguard the safety of people in a building. It is critical to have buildings that are up to code. Landlords are responsible for ensuring that Codes are followed.
Codes departments are found in many big county and municipal administrations.
The International Property Maintenance Code has been accepted by a number of code agencies around the state.
For information relevant to your locality, contact the codes department at your local government.
What are the minimum standards for rental housing?
Regulations governing the minimum health requirements for rental housing are promulgated by the Tennessee Department of Health. Tennessee Code Annotated 53-5502, which has been rearranged as 68-111 in Chapter 1200-1-2, contains the rules described below. The regulations address the following topics: basic equipment and facilities, light and ventilation, temperature, and sanitation.
Can I make a formal complaint?
In the event a rental property fails to meet minimal health requirements, it may be deemed unsuitable for human occupancy. Tenants who pay less than $200 per week in rent may submit a complaint with their local building inspector or county public health department, according to Tennessee Code Annotated 68-111-101. It is necessary to register written complaints with your county health authority, and a copy of the complaint must be delivered to the landlord by certified mail. A home investigation may be conducted in response to a qualified complaint.
If a complaint does not qualify for resolution under this policy, the building inspector may be able to enforce other building rules or ordinances that are relevant to residential property that is rented at a higher rate.
What if I live in government assisted housing?
Providing low-income families, the elderly, and those with disabilities with affordable, safe, and sanitary housing on the private market is a priority for the federal government. Participants are responsible for securing their own accommodation, which may include single-family homes, townhouses, and apartment buildings. The Housing Quality Standards (HQS) inspection method is carried out on a yearly basis to ensure that houses are clean and safe. Renters who are in need of assistance, such as Section 8 tenants, should begin by contacting the office that granted their rental Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) (HCV).
- In cases when the property owner or agent fails to fulfill their duties, the TDHA may step in to help.
- A number of public housing authorities (PHAs) provide services in the other counties as well.
- Renters who need assistance can get in touch with their local Department of Housing and Urban Development office for further information.
- If your residence does not meet minimum requirements, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) may intervene and order your landlord to make the required repairs.
The following counties are included in this jurisdiction: Anderson, Bledsoe, Blount; Bradley; Campbell; Carter; Claiborne; Cocke; Cumberland; Fentress; Grainger; Greene; Grundy; Hamblen; Hamilton; Hancock; Hawkins; Jefferson; Johnson; Knox; Loudon; McMinn; Marion; Meigs; Monroe; Morgan; Pickett; Polk; Roane; Rhea; Scott; Sequatchie; Sevier; Sullivan; Memphis Field Office, Department of Housing and Urban Development (901) 544-3367 Jurisdiction includes the following counties: Benton, Carroll, Chester, Crockett, Decatur, Dyer, Fayette, Gibson, Hardeman, Hardin, Haywood, Henderson, Henry, Lake, Lauderdale, Madison, McNairy, Obion, Shelby, Tipton, and Weakley counties.
Nashville Field Office of the Department of Housing and Urban Development – (615) 736-5600 Bedford, Cannon, Cheatham, Clay, Coffee, Davidson, De Kalb, Dickson, Franklin, Giles, Hickman, Houston, Humphreys, Jackson, Lawrence, Lewis, Lincoln, Macon, Marshall, Maury, Montgomery, Moore, Overton, Perry, Putnam, Robertson, Rutherford, Smith, Stewart, Sumner, Trousdale, Van Buren, Warren, Wayne, White, Williamson and Wilson counties are included in this jurisdiction.
Does the USDA assist with renters in rural areas?
Yes. The Rural Development Program of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is one example. The USDA provides assistance to around 360 multi-family residences in Tennessee. Please contact your local Rural Development office if you have any questions regarding living in USDA-assisted rural housing.
What about meth labs?
Unfortunately, some people use their homes to manufacture methamphetamine and other illicit narcotics. Because this is a criminal activity, the meth manufacturers will be apprehended, and the property owners will be held liable for the costs of clean-up. Making meth is a risky endeavor. It entails the use of potentially toxic and flammable substances. Invisible remnants left over after the production of meth might taint the inside of a residence. Check with the Texas Department of Environmental Quality’s Registry of Contaminated Properties or the Texas Bureau of Investigation’s Meth Offender Registry Database before renting a property to discover whether the property has any illegal meth lab links.
Where can I learn more about healthy housing policy?
More information on the areas where we live, work, and play may be found on our Healthy Places webpage. More information about healthy housing policies may be found by clicking here.