Real estate is one of the long-term investment portfolios that people use to generate profit. If you have never been in the shoes of rental house owners, you may not understand the intensity of such projects. House owners risk a lot of money in land purchase, building the property, maintaining it, and renting it. By now, most people are wondering how it can be challenging to be a landlord. The truth is that a lot is happening behind the scenes. It is not always collecting the rent.
Immediately after World War II, the labor market increased, and housing was highly demanded. Proprietors took advantage of the situation and hiked the rent. This came to a stop in the early 1940s when the government set laws and regulations prohibiting the landlords from unnecessary increases in rent. Since then, the government has enacted laws that govern both the landlords and the occupants.
Important Laws That Landlords Need to Understand
- The fair housing act
This act prohibits the landlords from discriminating against tenants for their race, gender, color, disability, or religion. Every person who wishes to rent a property or take a mortgage stands an equal chance to do so. If ant property owner denies them the opportunity based on earlier stated reasons, they can face legal charges. The charges are punishable by law, with the property owner paying a fine between $16,000 and $65,000.
- Squatters rights law
Squatters rights mean that a squatter can legally own a property where they have lived for a considerable amount of time without the owner’s consent. However, the squatters have to prove that they deserve to own the property. A landlord can try to get a squatter evicted for trespassing.
- The fair credit reporting act
When somebody needs to rent a property or take a mortgage, they must submit their credit history report. Tenant screen agencies use this information to determine whether the tenant can rent the property or take the mortgage. If they do not qualify, the agency should give a substantial reason why they don’t. No one should be discriminated against using their credit report.
- Landlord-tenant act
The landlord-tenant law governs the rental of household and business-related properties. Essentially, there are many risks associated with commercial property than residential property. Therefore, commercial property tenants need the right to security of tenure. Please note that landlord-tenant laws differ from state to state. This act gives tenants the right to ask for rent respite in events that bring the business to its knees. Most businesses in the United States had to do this during the COVID-19 pandemic since most of the businesses went on a compulsory closure.
- Implied warranty of habitability
Every proprietor should make sure that the house they rent is habitable. Should any problems arise, the landlord must fix them within the shortest time possible. This law has made it easier for property owners to renovate a house after a tenant has left so that the next one finds the house in good shape.
- Mutual covenant of quiet enjoyment
All tenants have the right to enjoy the property they have rented. The landlord does not have any right to disturb the tenant after they have signed the lease or rental agreement. This law also affects the other tenants stating that a tenant with superior authority has no right to interfere with another tenant’s peace.
- State required disclosers
There are a few things that the landlord has to disclose to the tenant. A property owner should tell the tenant of the facts, rules, and policies that affect the property. On the same note, they must tell the tenant of any existing health hazards in the property. The proprietor should always disclose lead-based hazards. Failure to disclose such information is considered a violation and is punishable by law.
- Eviction rules and procedures
There is no way a proprietor will wake up and tell a tenant to vacate their property. It is not possible even if the tenant has not honored the contract. If the tenant has not paid his rent, has not renewed their lease, or has done any other thing against the lease agreement, the landlord has to serve them a summon and complaint about an eviction. This law allows tenants to enjoy the right to the rented property and assure them that nobody is supposed to send them away on a whim.