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What is a landlord?

You are a landlord if you manage a property and you lease it to someone.   An apartment, house, land or any type of real estate can be leased to another individual or to a business.  If your official title is ‘landlord’, you are in a legal relationship and you should understand your obligations.

What should a landlord do?

  • Disclose ownership

Your first obligation is to disclose ownership to the tenant

It is possible to be a landlord, but not to be the owner of the property.   Should you be an agent, or acting on behalf of the owner, the tenant must know who the real owner of the property is.   The tenant must know who to pay his rent to or who he can contact if he has any maintenance issues or requests.

  • Respect the rights of the tenant

The details of the rental agreement should be set out in a written contract.   Conditions of the rental agreement cannot be changed on a whim.   The property must meet housing code requirements and must be habitable throughout the lease period.

A landlord can only inspect a unit or visit a tenant per appointment.   By renting a property to the tenant, he has been given the right to live in peace without intrusion from the landlord.

If the property is to be sold, the tenant must be given adequate notice if the landlord wants to show the property to prospective buyers.

  • Deliver the possession of the unit

The vacant unit must be ready for the new tenant to move into on the date that you’ve agreed upon.  It is the obligation of the landlord to honor the start of the lease agreement.

  • Make necessary repairs

 The landlord must inspect the property from time to time and be willing to make repairs to the unit where necessary.    The tenant can also ask for repairs to be made to make the property habitable.

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