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Can Logan Property Owners Be Charged with Trespassing on Their Own Rental Property?

Woman Inviting Her Landlord Inside the HouseAs a landlord, you will be responsible for maintenance on your property. When you have renters in your investment property, though, you are indebted to give your renters advanced notice before anyone comes to the property. Your property becomes the renter’s home once you hand over the keys. In other words, just because you own a rental property in Logan doesn’t mean you can infringe on the lives of your residents without proper warning. Even if you exclusively plan to replace a furnace filter, any unannounced entry could result in your resident levying charges of criminal trespassing.

Definitions of “reasonable notice” vary with state law, so make sure to review the legality of your entry as a landlord. Outline the terms for notice to be given before entry in the lease, so you don’t violate your renter’s privacy. For instance, twenty-four hours is the most typical notice requirement for somebody other than the tenant or their guests to enter the property, regardless of whether the resident is home or not. A few other locations further restrict entry to times of the day and days of the week, so ensure you comprehend and follow the laws in your area in such manner. It might appear to be a small observance; it’s certainly warranted irrespective of the wait.

Exceptions to this may take in emergency repairs or safety issues, such as faulty wiring that poses a fire hazard, burst pipes leaking into another unit, or broken windows and doors that could alter the temperature or invite criminal activity. As a landlord, you ought to keep the residence “habitable,” so your legal obligation may trump the obligation to notify residents of entry. In fact, failure to conduct emergency repairs within the time frame determined by your state law could constitute neglect.

It is also your duty as well as your tenants to make sure that the property is amenable with the local building or housing codes. If the absence of conservation or a renter’s extended absence is affecting heat or ventilation, or broken fixtures are preventing the adequate provision of water or electricity, then as the landlord, you could face penalties for violating standards of living. If your tenants are not upholding the sanitation and structure of your property, seek legal counsel as to whether you have a reasonable right to enter the premises to administer repairs.

One more exception to criminal trespassing is implied permission. This would entail whether your renter requested repairs or maintenance, which would then mean that they anticipated and gave authority to your entry of the premises. Unless it is explicitly stated in the lease that notice should be provided for all repairs, you may be covered from a liability standpoint. Keep documentation of all maintenance requests to avoid the risk of a complaint.

Eventually, you must respect your renter’s possessory rights. It may be your house, but it’s their home. Your property ownership does not authorize you to drop by without notice. You must submit proper notification of future entry. Illegal entry can result in fines up to several hundred dollars, or even jail time, depending on your state.

Real Property Management Cache Valley not only caters for proper notice and communication with the tenants for routine maintenance, repairs, and property evaluations, we also keep you in the loop about all aspects of your rental property. For more information on how we can make your life manageable, contact us or call us at 435-753-5200.

We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.