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Landlord Tenant Law
Landlord tenant law generally covers all matters related to leasing either residential or commercial real estate. Most individuals will at some point rent property for occupancy from either an individual or a business. These rental agreements are generally agreed upon and evidenced by the signing of a lease agreement, which cover the rights, obligations, and expectations of both the tenant and the landlord. When disputes arise between a tenant or tenants and a landlord, a landlord tenant attorney can help the parties resolve their issues.
Should I Hire a Landlord Tenant Attorney?
From the tenant's perspective, there are times when hiring a landlord tenant attorney absolutely makes sense. These include:
- When a landlord is attempting to evict you for reasons not agreed to in the rental agreement, or for reasons that are against the law.
- When a landlord repeatedly violates your privacy by entering your home without your permission, even after being told to stop.
- When a landlord fails to live up to the terms of the lease agreement, or lets the condition of your property deteriorate to uninhabitable conditions even after being alerted to the problems.
- In events where the landlord has materially breached the lease agreement and is unresponsive or unwilling to remedy the situation.
In cases where you and your landlord and unable to work problems out, hiring a landlord tenant attorney can be a great option to get immediate results. A landlord tenant attorney may be able to delay or stop an eviction, get repairs completed in your unit, and make it so your landlord stops entering your unit without notice and/or permission.
From a landlord's perspective, there are a few times when hiring a landlord tenant attorney is a good option. These include
- When a tenant does not pay rent and is unresponsive to your demands for payment. It's often the case that simply threatening to speak with an attorney is enough to cause your tenant to pay up.
- When upon move-out a tenant trashes a unit and the security deposit is insufficient to cover the cost of repairs.
- When a tenant is conducting suspected illegal activities from a unit and is unresponsive to your demands.
- Any time when a tenant is in material breach of the lease agreement and is unresponsive to your demands.
When to Avoid Hiring a Landlord Tenant Lawyer
Since Landlord Tenant Lawyers are not free, you may first attempt to remedy disputes between your landlord or your tenant before contacting an attorney. In some cases, minor issues can be resolved with a phone call followed up by a letter. Additionally, some landlords and tenants feel comfortable enough with the local landlord tenant laws to proceed with semi-legal action on their own. Finally, in some cases, such as when a landlord fails to return a security deposit after move-out, a tenant may wish to sue the landlord in small claims court where an attorney is not permitted.
How Much do Landlord Tenant Attorneys Cost?
Landlord tenant attorneys will typically offer a flat rate for services as long as the dispute doesn't wind up in court. For example, a landlord tenant attorney may offer to write you a legal demand letter to your landlord for a specified amount. Whenever disputes escalate to where they need to be litigated in court it's reasonable for a landlord tenant attorney to begin charging you an hourly rate, which is usually in the hundreds of dollars per hour. Keep in mind, all landlord tenant attorneys are ethically bound to keep their fees reasonable, and to efficiently resolve cases.
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