If you own a rental property, you probably understand that being a landlord comes with its fair share of responsibilities and obligations. Besides collecting the rent, a landlord is also a salesperson, a repairman and a conflict solver.
Here are some of the obligations that come with being a landlord in California:
Ensure the property’s habitability
It is the job of the landlord to ensure that the rental property is fit for habitation. That means the rental property must be devoid of hazards and defects. The property must also meet all the local and state building and health codes.
Basically, a livable house should offer the following:
- Protection from elements with a functioning roof, walls, doors and windows
- Safe electrical system
- HVAC access
- Safely maintained floors, stairways and rails
- A working plumbing system
Ensure the safety of the tenants
As a landlord, you want to ensure that your tenants and their properties are safe from crime. You can realize this by taking simple steps like installing security lights in dark areas and providing sturdy locks on doors.
Basically, preventing crime begins with screening potential tenants before letting them into the property. For instance, checking if a potential tenant has a violent criminal record can help keep other residents safe.
Not every property defect is the responsibility of the landlord. For instance, damages occasioned by the tenant should remain their responsibility. However, it is the job of the landlord to ensure that the property is structurally sound and not run down. Remember, ignored repairs are likely to become safety hazards, and this can lead to serious consequences.
Knowing your landlord obligations can help prevent most landlord-tenant disputes. When disputes do happen, make sure that you obtain experienced legal guidance.