When you invest in property, you inevitably take on substantial risk. You could face a natural disaster. The economy could plummet. Another key potential headache may be right in front of you: an upset tenant. Tenants who become convinced they have been wronged could nail you with a lawsuit.
You could be sued if there are dangers on the property that could lead to injuries or tenant property damage. Ignorance is, unfortunately, not protection. You must make yourself aware of any significant hazards on the property and that you are properly safeguarding your residents from crime. Inspecting the property is key. If you find any dangerous conditions, inform your renters immediately.
You could be sued for discrimination if you treat certain renters better than others. Giving bad customer service to all your residents is not the best way to succeed in property investment – but certainly don’t pick and choose those you treat well. Consistency will keep you out of court.
Choose residents based on business reasons rather than personal ones. You cannot use disability, age, family status, gender, religion, race, or national origin to discriminate. (See the Federal Fair Housing Acts.)
Landlord-tenant law in Minnesota describes how you must handle your security deposits. They must be stored in an interest-bearing account. Once the tenant has exited the premises, given you the keys, and sent you their forwarding address, you have three weeks to pay back the deposit (fairly subtracting any costs for damages). You have just five days if the property is condemned.
Covering as many potential situations as possible within the lease will protect you. Make sure you know your lease well and are not simply using the wording of a template. Be certain there are no parts of the lease that go against federal or state law. You specifically want to avoid using provisions that state the tenant cannot sue you, or that they agree not to get their security deposit refunded.
Are you worried tenants might sue you? Get help from us! At Twin Cities Leasing, we are an experienced property management company that can streamline and solidify your management processes. Let us show you why we’re the highest rated residential property management company in Minnesota.