Nowadays, it is very hard to find people whom you can trust. A lot of individuals are taking advantage of one another especially if money is involved. If you have moved out of your parents’ house, and is still a bit naïve about the workings in the real work, the best way to equipped yourself in avoiding technical problems is to be knowledgeable about basic laws that will protect you from unnecessary hassles.
Majority of the rights of a renter vary across states; however, many of them have all of these in common:
- You cannot be denied of your right to rent a place on the grounds of your religion, nationality, sex, race, disability or family status. The Fair Housing Act guarantees you that right.
- If you have failed to pay your dues on time, your landlord cannot legally kick you out of the place. He cannot also evict you without proper notice.
- Your tenant should make sure that the place to be rented complies with all the health and safety regulations of the state. This means that your place should be proven to be structurally safe and has basic amenities such as electricity, water, and heat.
- If there is a problem inherent with the apartment or the house, then it is the responsibility of your landlord to have it repaired by his own money. If the owner is uncooperative, you can choose to have it repaired yourself and just simply deduct the cost to your next rent.
- You are legally allowed to break the lease if your landlord has been found guilty of not complying with the health and safety issues.
- If you decide to stay, your landlord cannot evict you as a form of retaliation for your actions. If your landlord starts making your life miserable, you can sue him for “constructive eviction”.
- Your landlord cannot drop by unannounced. He should give a 24-hour notice. He is also not allowed to change your locks nor have your utilities shut down.
When disputes arise, it is always beneficial if you try to straighten everything out in a friendly manner. However, if you find yourself having the necessity to bring the problem to the court, make sure that you have a strong case. Have a record of all your transactions including photographs, conversations, and receipts so that you will have proofs. Another thing that you have to keep in mind when bringing matters to the court is the financial setback of doing so. As much as possible try to look for free or low-cost legal support groups within the city or contact the bar association for inexpensive referrals and legal clinics.