Landlord Tenant Rights

Landlord-tenant law governs the rental of property. The basis of the legal relationship between a landlord and tenant is derived from both contract and property law. The tenant has a temporary possessory interest in the premises. The rental premisesmay be land, a house, a building, or an apartment. The length of the tenancy may be for a specific period of time, for an indefinite but renewable period of time (this would include a month-to-month tenancy). During the term of the tenancy, the tenant has the right to possess the premises, and to restrict the access of others. A landlord-tenant contract may alter and define rights allowed under law. Landlord-tenant contracts are typically known as rental agreements or leases. What provisions may be contained in a lease is normally regulated by state law. Standard in all leases is the implied covenant of quiet enjoyment which gives the tenant the right to possess the rental premises without interference from or disturbance by others, including the landlord. Another standard lease provision for residential rental units is the warranty of habitability. If the landlord causes the rental to become uninhabitable or fails to make repairs so that the premises are uninhabitable, a constructive eviction may occur. This may allow the tenant to withhold rent, repair the problem and deduct the cost from the rent, or recover damages. Federal law prohibits discrimination in housing and the rental market. Landlords are also typically restricted by state laws from evicting tenants in retaliation of action the tenant may have taken to enforce a provision of the lease, a housing code compliance, or other applicable law.


Inside Landlord Tenant Rights