When Texas leases successfully balance the rights and privileges that landlords and tenants most desire, they often help minimize future disagreements and legal challenges. However, before such leases can be drafted, all contractual parties must try to better understand the primary interests of those countersigning the required documents.
In general, stable and responsible tenants want to extend their leases with landlords who provide quality property, respect tenant privacy rights and make all promised repairs promptly. And good landlords want to attract and retain tenants who pay their rent on time, get along well with other tenants — and keep the rented or leased property in good condition. If respectable landlords will also provide all required legal disclosures to prospective tenants, few problems may arise.
Here’s additional information both Texas landlords and tenants should bear in mind while trying to build and maintain good relationships with one another.
Federal laws forbid discrimination and other wrongful practices
Whether renting commercial or residential properties, landlords must avoid violating all
federal statutes and regulations. Perhaps the most important law is the Fair Housing Act that forbids treating anyone unfairly who’s looking for a place to live.
Stated simply, property owners cannot discriminate against prospective tenants based upon their gender, race, color, national origin, disability, family status (regarding whether they have children under age 18 living with them) or religion. This law extends to all sales, rentals and financing of dwellings. Furthermore, as your Houston real estate attorney can explain to you in greater detail, there are Texas state, county, city and municipal laws that also define and extend these rights and obligations. In addition to forbidding discrimination, all these laws are designed to overcome past efforts to segregate society based on poverty and the seven factors named above.
Other federal laws affecting prospective property tenants include the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and specific Environmental Protection Agency laws and regulations. After obtaining an FCRA “background check” on a prospective tenant, landlords must allow people to formally dispute negative material in their credit reports with pertinent legal documents.
While respecting all federal, state, local and municipal laws – Texas landlords must also be prepared to provide tenants with numerous disclosures – including those set forth below.
Property information, equipment & disclosures all Texas landlords must provide
Since these can be quite numerous, the following list is merely representative of the more common ones.
Please contact our law firm so we can answer your questions and prepare any rental contracts that you may require. Our experience in this field should allow us to fully meet your needs.
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