Rental properties come with a number of responsibilities and expenses. There are utilities to turn on and pay for, routine maintenance, preventative maintenance, landscaping, cleaning, pest control – the list goes on. Typically, landlords and tenants each have their own responsibilities and then there are shared responsibilities as well. For example, the landlord is solely responsible for providing a habitable rental home. The tenant is solely responsible for paying rent every month and reporting maintenance problems that arise. Together, they need to keep the systems and functions of the property clean and well-maintained.
Before we talk about who should be responsible for what – it’s important that the expectations and responsibilities of all parties are communicated and included in the lease agreement. Having everything documented will eliminate confusion and conflict.
Landlord Responsibilities in Chula Vista
A landlord’s first responsibility is to make sure the Chula Vista rental property is habitable. This includes structural soundness and functional systems. Heat, water, and electrical components need to be working and safe. If there’s a problem or an issue that prevents the home from being habitable, the landlord has a responsibility to fix it right away.
In addition to habitability, you’ll need to keep the home safe. If you’re renting out a multi-family property, this includes the common areas. Make sure there aren’t any hazards that may cause a tenant or a tenant’s guest to trip and fall or become injured. Check for mold and rot as well as pests, and make sure the home is properly ventilated. Having balconies inspected will also be a concern moving forward on multi-unit buildings.
Landlords will need to respond to and coordinate repair and maintenance requests. You shouldn’t be called out to change a light bulb, but when a repair request does come in, you’ll need to respond and be available to the tenant. You’ll have to be reachable in case there are emergencies.
Legal responsibilities come with the territory for landlords as well. You’ll need to know and follow all federal and state fair housing laws, and you’ll also need to comply with rent control and just cause eviction laws as well as the myriad of California’s rental ordinances.
Tenant Responsibilities in Chula Vista
Tenants are required to maintain the condition of the rental property while they’re living there. You can expect your residents to keep the home clean and free of pests and insects. You can give them instructions that will help them avoid mold, rust, and excessive wear and tear. Make sure your lease agreement references how often you expect them to change the air filters. This should be a tenant’s responsibility.
Tenants are required to pay for any damage that is their responsibility and goes beyond normal wear and tear. Small nail holes in the walls from where pictures were hung are one thing but gaping holes in the drywall are another. If a tenant’s abuse, misuse, or neglect of the property causes damage, they should be responsible for paying to repair it.
Tenants also have a responsibility to report any necessary maintenance right away. Deferred and unreported maintenance is expensive, and you don’t want those things to go unreported.
Finally, tenants should be responsible for their pets. When you provide a pet-friendly property, you should have a pet policy in place that tenants are required to follow.
Shared Chula Vista Rental Property Responsibilities
Usually, tenants pay for their utilities. This is sometimes negotiable, depending on the property and whether it’s a single-family home or a multi-family property.
Another negotiable item is landscaping and lawn care. Typically, the owner will want to hire a professional service to keep the lawn looking good. However, that cost can be included in the rental amount to offset what the owner has to pay. It’s the same with a pool – you don’t really want your tenants responsible for mixing pool chemicals, but you can hire a service to maintain the pool and then include that cost in the rent your tenant pays.
Every property is different, and if you’d like to discuss the unique needs of your Chula Vista rental home, and how the responsibilities should be managed, please contact us at Encore Realty, Inc..