Tenants Have Rights - Do You know them?
As a tenant, it's important to be aware of your rights to ensure that you're being treated fairly and lawfully by your landlord. Here's a guide to understanding your tenant's rights:
Right to a habitable dwelling: As a tenant, you have the right to live in a dwelling that's safe, clean and meets the basic requirements for health and safety. This includes working plumbing and heating, a secure building, and no pest infestations. If any of these basic requirements aren't met, you have the right to request that your landlord make repairs.
Right to privacy: Your landlord can't enter your home without your permission unless there's an emergency, you've given them notice, or it's outlined in your lease agreement.
Right to a written lease agreement: A lease agreement outlines the terms and conditions of your tenancy, including the rental amount, length of the lease, and any restrictions on the property. It's important to read your lease agreement carefully before signing it.
Right to quiet enjoyment: You have the right to peaceful enjoyment of your rental unit without interference from your landlord. This includes the right to not be harassed, intimidated, or discriminated against.
Right to notice before eviction: If your landlord wants to evict you, they must give you notice and follow the proper legal procedures. In most cases, you have the right to contest the eviction in court.
Right to fair housing: It's illegal for a landlord to discriminate against tenants based on their race, color, religion, national origin, sex, disability, or family status.
Right to a security deposit: If your landlord requires a security deposit, they must return it to you at the end of your tenancy, minus any deductions for damages or unpaid rent.
It's important to note that tenant's rights can vary by state and local laws, so it's important to research and understand the specific laws in your area. If you feel that your rights are being violated, you may want to consider contacting a local tenant's rights organization or an attorney who specializes in landlord-tenant law.
To learn more about your rights as a tenant see the link below for the Tenants' Rights Handbook. The TX State library also provides more information to Landlords and Tenants Landlord/Tenant Forms - browse their site for more information.