SB 0744 Omnibus Revisions to Landlord-Tenant Law
LR Number:S2753.01I Fiscal Note:2753-01
Committee:Insurance and Housing
Last Action:02/07/96 - Hearing Conducted S Insurance & Housing Committee
Effective Date:August 28, 1996
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Current Bill Summary

SB 744 - This act contains numerous provisions for landlords and tenants.

EVICTION FOR DRUG USE ON PREMISES - The landlord may terminate a lease if there is illegal drug activity on the premises by the tenant or with his consent. The tenant may take several actions to restrain guests. The landlord must pursue legal procedures to evict a tenant, rather than entering to take possession immediately. Thirty days' notice must be given to tenants receiving subsidies.

TERMINATING TENANCY - A lease termination for a mobile home lot shall give 60 days' notice. A written agreement is required to dispense with a notice to quit.

ABANDONMENT - Personal property left on the premises by the tenant may be removed or disposed of by the landlord after 60 days of unpaid rent and notice to the tenant by certified mail. The tenant can stay by responding within 15 days. The form for the notice to the tenant about belief of abandonment is spelled out.

ASSIGNMENT BY LANDLORD - The assignee may collect rent by presenting the renter with a valid written instrument.

MAINTENANCE OF PROPERTY - The landlord is required to maintain leased property in accordance with the housing code and make all types of repairs listed. Specific agreements may be made to the contrary. A tenant whose property is not properly maintained can get a lease forfeiture, an injunction and actual damages sustained. A landlord's failure to maintain the property shall be considered a "forcible entry and detainer" if the tenant leaves the property as a result.

FORCEFUL EVICTIONS - Possessors of property may only be removed in accordance with a court order.

SELF-MAINTENANCE - The tenant can give a landlord 14 days' notice of major defects which cost less than $300 or one-half the rent to fix. If response is not made, the tenant can make the repair and deduct the cost from the rent.

TENANT OBLIGATIONS - Tenants shall keep the premises clean and safe and use them in a reasonable manner. Tenants shall allow reasonable access to landlords, and landlords shall give 48 hours' notice prior to entering except in emergencies.

DISTRESS/DISTRAINT - A landlord may not seize personal property to pay for rent in arrears.

MITIGATING DAMAGES - A landlord must make a reasonable effort to rent property vacated by a tenant.

UNLAWFUL DETAINER - Shall include a tenant holding over after a mortgage has been foreclosed, after 30 days' notice. The doubling of damages for the unlawful detainer of property is removed. A defendant in court may use defenses and counterclaims under certain related landlord-tenant sections.

JUDGMENT TO VACATE PREMISES - A judgment for possession of premises must be enforced by notice to the possessor. The court may order the sheriff to deliver possession of the premises to the prevailing party. A bond may be filed with an appeal to prevent the execution of a judgment.

RETALIATORY CONDUCT - A landlord shall not retaliate against a tenant for filing a proper complaint against the landlord. A tenant may raise a defense that the landlord increased the rent in retaliation for housing complaints made by the tenant.

SECURITY DEPOSITS - Security deposits are limited to one month's rent (instead of two). Interest must be kept on behalf of the tenant. Other limits are imposed upon the landlord's ability to keep the deposit.