How The Renters Protection Act Affects You
Whenever a person starts a search for any kind of Renters Protection Act it is usually because they are trying to discern what their rights as a tenant are. It is important to keep in mind that each states has its own Renters Protection Act and that any particular act that is valid in one state may not necessarily be valid in another state, even though they may be adjoining. There are many provisions that apply to most states in general, so having an overview can be very helpful.
Most states have a Renters Protection Act which limits the amount of money a landlord can charge a prospective tenant for a security deposit. It is usually held at one or two months of rent. Some guidelines allow landlords to charge up to three months rent, however. In most cases, the guidelines will usually stipulate that a landlord must refund the security deposit within 45 days of the tenant vacating the property. If the landlord chooses to attempt to deduct money from the security deposit for any damages caused to the unit, the Renters Protection Act in most states requires the landlord to give a written explanation for why he or she is choosing to do so. Any landlord who does not provide this written explanation can be sued by the tenant for damages.
Many tenants are very confused about how and when a landlord may evict a tenant from a rental unit. In most states, a Renters Protection Act has been enacted which requires the landlord to go to court before he or she can begin eviction proceedings. Landlords are prohibited from locking tenants out of their units if they have not paid their rent. Neither are they allowed to stop utilities in cases of non-payment of rent. This is considered to be retaliatory behavior and is almost always prohibited in every Renters Protection Act.
Tenants are allowed to demand that a landlord carry out repairs in the most expeditious manner possible, usually within 24 hours of it being reported to the landlord. It will also usually allow a tenant to carry out their own repairs in cases where the landlord does not perform the repairs on his or her own after having been notified by the tenant. The tenant may then recoup the cost of these expenses by deducting them from the next month’s rent after providing copies of receipts to the landlord.
Other tenant’s rights pertaining to matters such as late payment of rent, the right to privacy and forcible entry. In all cases, it is important to know that any renters who have concerns about their rights being violated have recourse through various protection agencies and through the court system, if necessary. It is not always necessary to hire an attorney in cases like this. Often the agency will offer a significant amount of help and guidance on how to resolve the issues with the landlord directly. When that does not work, the agency can usually refer the renter to some sort of community service agency that can provide further assistance.