Research paper California Tenants Law (READ PROMT) APA format

Research PaperCalifornia Law has excellent protection for tenants involved in landlord-tenant disputes. If you know your rights you won’t waste your money! Please write an essay in which you address the 5 issues below. Write at least 5 paragraphs. You may write more then 5.Please answer the following questions citing the California Tenant’s Guide, the specific sections of the California Civil Code, and any other legitimate sources that may apply:1. Which lease is best for you? Explain the advantages and disadvantages of a fixed-term lease and a month-to-month lease as follows:If you know you might need to move in a few months, which type of lease should you choose?If you don’t want your rent to go up, which lease should you choose?If you leave before your fixed-term lease expires, what could happen?2. Rent increases: When you have a month-to-month lease, is there any limit on how much or how often the landlord can raise your rent? (Can he raise it from $1,000 to $5,000?) What are the rules governing how many days notice the landlord has to give before raising your rent? Give specific examples.3. Eviction notices: If your rent is due on the first day of the month and you don’t pay it, when is the first day the landlord can legally give you a 3-day Notice to pay or get out? (How many days can you be late without getting a 3-day notice?) If the landlord gives you a 30-day notice to leave, does he have to explain why he is evicting you? How much money can he ask for: Just the rent? The rent plus late fees? The rent plus interest?4. Repairs: If you have an urgent problem such as a toilet that doesn’t work, what should you do? Explain the steps. Suppose the landlord tries to evict you after you have complained about the need for repairs? (cite the specific Civil Code Provision.)5. Security Deposit: You want to move out and you want to make sure you get all of your security deposit back. Describe each step you should take make sure you get the deposit back starting from the day you move in. What is the landlord required to do before you move out? Describe each step. How long does the landlord have to either return your deposit or explain why he has made deductions?On the reference page, you must begin your citation to the Tenant Guide as : California tenants: A guide to residential tenants’ and landlords’ rights and responsibilities.Your in-text citation should be (California tenants, 2012, p.xx)For the Civil code, the in-text citation should be cited as follows: (CCC 1234(a) )
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C alifornia T enants
1625 NORTH MARKET BOULEVARD
SACRAMENTO, CA 95834
www.dca.ca.gov
A Guide to Residential Tenants’ and
Landlords’ Rights and Responsibilities
Revised July 2012
C alifornia T enants
A Guide to Residential Tenants’ and
Landlords’ Rights and Responsibilities
Department of Consumer Affairs, 1998
Reprinted, 2000
Updated and reprinted, 2001
Reprinted, 2002
Updated and reprinted, 2003
Updated, 2004
Updated and reprinted, 2006
Updated and reprinted, 2007
Reprinted, 2008
Updated and reprinted, 2010
Updated and reprinted, 2012, current with all 2011 laws.
California Tenants—A Guide to Residential Tenants’ and Landlords’ Rights and Responsibilities
was written by the Department of Consumer Affairs’ Legal Affairs Division and was produced by
the Department’s Office of Publications, Design & Editing. The 1998 printing of this booklet was
funded by a grant from the California Consumer Protection Foundation.
The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing contributed to the text on unlawful
discrimination in housing.
Notice
The opinions expressed in this booklet are those of the authors and should not be construed
as representing the opinions or policy of any official or agency of the State of California. While this
publication is designed to provide accurate and current information about the law, readers should
consult an attorney or other expert for advice in particular cases, and should also read the relevant
statutes and court decisions when relying on cited material.
Ordering Information
This publication is available on the Internet. See the Department of Consumer Affairs’ home page
at www.dca.ca.gov.
This booklet may be copied, if (1) the meaning of copied text is not changed or misrepresented,
(2) credit is given to the Department of Consumer Affairs, and (3) all copies are distributed free
of charge.
For information on ordering copies of this booklet, see page 111.
Dear Reader:
For most of us, where we live is the most significant consumer decision we make, and our housing
costs are the biggest part of our budget. Our home is where we spend much of our time, and we want
it to be hassle free!
Move-in day marks the beginning of an important relationship between a tenant and a landlord. To
help tenants and landlords manage their rental-housing responsibilities, we’re pleased to provide the
Department of Consumer Affairs’ practical “California Tenants” guide.
The “California Tenants” booklet is a practical resource for both tenants and landlords. We’ve
provided information about rental applications, unlawful discrimination, security deposits, repair
responsibilities, rent increases, termination of leases, and eviction notices. We’ve included an
inventory checklist for use before moving in, and again when moving out.
If you need additional assistance, we’ve also provided a comprehensive list of resources in
communities throughout the Golden State.
We hope you find “California Tenants” helpful. You can get more information by visiting the
Department’s Web site at www.dca.ca.gov or by calling (800) 952-5210.
California Department of Consumer Affairs
T able
of
C ontents
Introduction……………………………………. 1
Before You Agree to Rent……………….. 15
How to Use This Booklet…………………… 1
Rental Agreements and Leases………………. 15
Who is a Landlord and
Who is a Tenant? ……………………………… 2
General information………………………… 15
General Information About
Landlords and Tenants ………………………….. 2
Written rental agreements………………… 16
Special Situations…………………………………. 2
Leases………………………………………… 17
Hotels and motels …………………………… 3
Shared Utility Meters …………………………… 17
Residential hotels…………………………….. 3
Translation of Proposed
Rental Agreement………………………………… 18
Single lodger in a private residence ……… 4
Transitional housing …………………………. 4
Mobilehome parks and
recreational vehicle parks………………….. 4
Looking For a Rental Unit…………………. 5
Looking for and Inspecting
Rental Units…………………………………………. 5
Looking for a rental unit…………………….. 5
Oral rental agreements……………………. 16
When You Have Decided to Rent………. 18
What the Rental Agreement or Lease
Should Include …………………………………… 19
Key terms…………………………………….. 19
Alterations to Accommodate a Tenant
With a Disability………………………………….. 21
Tenant’s basic legal rights………………… 22
Inspecting before you rent………………….. 5
Landlord’s and tenant’s duty of
good faith and fair dealing………………… 22
The rental application……………………….. 6
Shared utilities………………………………. 22
Prepaid rental listing services……………… 7
Landlord’s Disclosures …………………………. 22
Credit Checks………………………………………. 9
Lead-based paint……………………………. 22
Application Screening Fee……………………… 10
Periodic pest control treatments………… 23
Holding Deposit …………………………………. 10
Asbestos……………………………………… 23
Unlawful Discrimination………………………… 11
Carcinogenic material……………………… 23
What is unlawful discrimination?………… 11
Methamphetamine contamination………. 23
Examples of unlawful discrimination……. 12
Demolition permit…………………………… 24
Limited exceptions for
single rooms and roommates……………. 13
Military base or explosives……………….. 24
Resolving housing
discrimination problems…………………… 14
Death in the rental unit……………………. 24
Condominium conversion project……….. 24
Basic Rules Governing
Security Deposits………………………………… 24
The Inventory Checklist…………………………. 26
Renter’s Insurance………………………………. 27
Rent Control………………………………………. 27
LIVING IN THE RENTAL UNIT…………………. 28
Paying the Rent……………………………… 28
When is rent due?………………………….. 28
Check or cash?……………………………… 29
Having Repairs Made……………………………. 40
The “repair and deduct” remedy………… 41
The “abandonment” remedy……………… 42
The “rent withholding” remedy…………… 43
Giving the landlord notice…………………. 45
Tenant information………………………….. 46
Lawsuit for damages as a remedy………. 46
Resolving complaints out of court………. 47
Landlord’s Sale of the Rental Unit……………. 47
Obtaining receipts for rent payments…… 30
When a property is sold
in foreclosure………………………………… 48
Late fees and dishonored check fees….. 30
Condominium Conversions…………………….. 48
Partial rent payments ……………………… 30
Demolition of Dwelling………………………….. 49
Security Deposit Increases……………………. 31
Influencing the Tenant to Move……………….. 49
Rent Increases……………………………………. 31
How often can rent be raised?…………… 31
MOVING OUT……………………………………… 49
Rent increase; notice and
effective date………………………………… 32
Giving and Receiving Proper Notice …………. 49
Example of a rent increase……………….. 33
When Can the Landlord
Enter the Rental Unit?………………………….. 33
Subleases and Assignments………………….. 35
Subleases……………………………………. 35
Tenant’s notice to end a
periodic tenancy…………………………….. 49
Tenant’s notice to end tenancy due to
domestic violence, sexual assault,
or stalking…………………………………….. 50
Landlord’s notice to end a
periodic tenancy ……………………………. 50
Assignments…………………………………. 36
Advance Payment of
Last Month’s Rent……………………………….. 52
DEALING WITH PROBLEMS…………………… 36
Refund of Security Deposits…………………… 53
Repairs and Habitability………………………… 36
Common problems and
how to avoid them………………………….. 53
Landlord’s responsibility for repairs…….. 37
Tenant’s responsibility for repairs……….. 37
Initial inspection before
tenant moves out…………………………… 55
Conditions that make a
rental unit legally uninhabitable…………. 37
Suggested Approaches to
security deposit deductions………………. 59
Limitations on landlord’s duty
to keep the rental unit habitable………… 39
Refund of security deposits
after sale of building ………………………. 63
Responsibility for other kinds
of repairs……………………………………… 40
Legal actions for obtaining
refund of security deposits……………….. 64
Tenant’s agreement to make repairs ….. 40
Tenant’s Death …………………………………… 65
Moving at the End of a Lease…………………. 65
The Inventory Checklist…………………………. 66
TERMINATIONS AND EVICTIONS……………. 67
When Can a Landlord
Terminate a Tenancy?…………………………… 67
GLOSSARY………………………………………… 84
30-day or 60-day notice …………………… 68
APPENDIX 1 — OCCUPANTS NOT NAMED
IN EVICTION LAWSUIT OR WRIT OF
POSSESSION……………………………………… 89
How to respond to a 30-day
or 60-day notice ……………………………. 68
Occupants Not Named in
Eviction Lawsuit………………………………….. 89
Three-day notice ……………………………. 68
Occupants Not Named in
Writ of Possession………………………………. 90
Written Notices of Termination ……………….. 68
How to respond to a three-day notice….. 70
How to count the three days……………… 71
Proper Service of Notices………………………. 71
The Eviction Process
(Unlawful Detainer Lawsuit)……………………. 72
Overview of the eviction process………… 72
APPENDIX 2—LIST OF CITIES
WITH RENT CONTROL ORDINANCES……….. 90
APPENDIX 3—TENANT INFORMATION
AND ASSISTANCE RESOURCES……………… 91
How to respond to an
unlawful detainer lawsuit………………….. 73
Eviction of “unnamed occupants”………. 74
APPENDIX 4—OTHER RESOURCES………… 99
Before the court hearing………………….. 74
Publications on Landlord-Tenant Law………… 99
Discovery in unlawful detainer
cases………………………………………….. 75
Department of Consumer Affairs­—
Legal Guides………………………………………. 99
After the court’s decision…………………. 76
Department of Consumer Affairs—
Other Resources…………………………………. 99
Writ of possession………………………….. 77
Setting aside a default judgment……….. 78
A word about bankruptcy………………….. 78
Retaliatory Actions, Evictions, and
Discrimination…………………………………….. 79
Retaliatory actions and evictions……….. 79
Retaliatory discrimination…………………. 80
RESOLVING PROBLEMS……………………….. 80
Talk With Your Landlord…………………………. 80
Getting Help From a Third Party ……………… 81
Arbitration and Mediation ……………………… 82
APPENDIX 5—LEGALLY REQUIRED
TEXT OF NOTICES …………………………… 100
INDEX ……………………………………………. 104
Inventory Checklist……………………… 107
How to Order Copies
of this Booklet…………………………….. 111
C alifornia T enants
A Guide to Residential Tenants’ and Landlords’
Rights and Responsibilities
Introduction
What should a tenant do if his or her
apartment needs repairs? Can a landlord
force a tenant to move? How many days notice
does a tenant have to give a landlord before
the tenant moves? Can a landlord raise a
tenant’s rent? California Tenants—A Guide to
Residential Tenants’ and Landlords’ Rights and
Responsibilities answers these questions and
many others.
Whether the tenant is renting a room, an
apartment, a house, or a duplex, the landlordtenant relationship is governed by federal, state,
and local laws. This booklet focuses on California
laws that govern the landlord-tenant relationship,
and suggests things that both the landlord and
tenant can do to make the relationship a good
one. Although the booklet is written from the
tenant’s point of view, landlords can also benefit
from its information.
Tenants and landlords should discuss their
expectations and responsibilities before they
enter into a rental agreement. If a problem
occurs, the tenant and landlord should try to
resolve the problem by open communication
and discussion. Honest discussion of the
problem may show each party that he or she
is not completely in the right, and that a fair
compromise is in order.
If the problem is one for which the landlord
is responsible (see pages 37–40), the landlord
may be willing to correct the problem or work out
a solution without further action by the tenant.
If the problem is one for which the tenant is
responsible (see pages 37–40), the tenant may
agree to correct the problem once the tenant
understands the landlord’s concerns. If the
parties cannot reach a solution on their own,
they may be able to resolve the problem through
mediation or arbitration (see page 82). In some
situations, a court action may provide the only
solution (see pages 46–48, 64–65, 72–78).
The Department of Consumer Affairs hopes
that tenants and landlords will use this booklet’s
information to avoid problems in the first place,
and to resolve those problems that do occur.
How to Use This Booklet
You can probably find the information you need
by using this booklet’s Table of Contents, Index,
and Glossary of Terms.
Table of Contents
The Table of Contents shows that the booklet
is divided into nine main sections. Each main
section is divided into smaller sections. For
example, if you want information about the rental
agreement, look under “Rental Agreements and
Leases” in the “BEFORE YOU AGREE TO RENT”
section.
1
Index
Most of the topics are mentioned in the Table
of Contents. If you don’t find a topic there, look in
the Index (page 104). It’s more specific than the
Table of Contents. For example, under “Cleaning”
in the Index, you’ll find the topics “deposits or
fees,” “tenant’s responsibility,” etc.
Glossary
If you just want to know the meaning of a
term, such as eviction or holding deposit, look
in the Glossary (page 84). The glossary gives
the meaning of more than 60 terms. Each of
these terms also is printed in boldface type the
first time that it appears in each section of the
booklet.
The Department of Consumer Affairs hopes
that you will find the information you’re looking
for in this booklet. If you can’t find what you’re
looking for, call or write one of the resources
listed in “Getting Help From a Third Party”
(see pages 81–82) or “Tenant Information and
Assistance Resources” (see page 91).
Who is a Landlord and
Who is a Tenant?
General Information About
Landlords and Tenants
A landlord is a person or a company that owns
a rental unit. The landlord rents or leases the
rental unit to another person, called a tenant, for
the tenant to live in. The tenant obtains the right
to the exclusive use and possession of the rental
unit during the lease or rental period.
Sometimes, the landlord is called the owner,
and the tenant is called a resident.
A rental unit is an apartment, house, duplex,
condominium, or room that a landlord rents
to a tenant to live in. In this booklet, the term
rental unit means any one of these. Because the
tenant uses the rental unit to live in, it is called a
residential rental unit.
Often, a landlord will have a rental agent or
a property manager who manages the rental
property. The agent or manager is employed
by the landlord and represents the landlord.
In most instances, the tenant can deal with
the rental agent or property manager as if this
person were the landlord. For example, a tenant
can work directly with the agent or manager to
resolve problems. When a tenant needs to give
the landlord one of the tenant notices described
in this booklet (for example, see pages 45–46,
49–50), the tenant can give the notice to the
landlord’s rental agent or property manager.
The name, address and telephone number
of the manager and an owner of the building
(or other person who is authorized to receive
legal notices for the owner) must be written
in the rental agreement or lease, or posted
conspicuously in the rental unit or building.1
Special Situations
The tenant rights and responsibilities
discussed in this booklet apply only to people
whom the law defines as tenants. Generally,
under California law, lodgers and residents
of hotels and motels have the same rights
as tenants.2?Situations in which lodgers and
residents of hotels and motels do and do not
have the rights of tenants, and other special
situations, are discussed in the “Special
Situations” sidebar on pages 3–4.3
Continued on page 5
1
Civil Code Sections 1961, 1962, 1962.5. See Moskovitz et al., California Landlord-Tenant Practice, Section 1.21A
2
Civil Code Section 1940(a).
3
See additional discussion in Moskovitz et al., California Landlord-Tenant Practice, Section 1.3 (Cal. Cont. Ed. Bar 2002, 2005, 2009, 2011).
(Cal. Cont. Ed. Bar 2011).
2
Special Situations
Hotels and motels
???If you are a resident in a hotel or motel, you do not have the rights of a tenant in any of the
following situations:
1. You live in a hotel, motel, residence club, or other lodging facility for 30 days or less, and your
occupancy is subject to the state’s hotel occupancy tax.
2. You live in a hotel, motel, residence club, or other lodging facility for more than 30 days, but
have not paid for all room and related charges owing by the 30th day.
3. You live in a hotel or motel to which the manager has a right of access and control, and all of
the following is true:
• The hotel or motel allows occupancy for periods of fewer than seven days.
• All of the following services are provided for all residents:
– a fireproof safe for residents’ use;
– a central telephone service;
– maid, mail, and room service; and
– food service provided by a food establishment that is on or next to the hotel or motel
grounds and that is operated in conjunction with the hotel or motel.
???If you live in a unit described by either 1, 2, or 3 above, you are not a tenant; you are a
guest. Therefore, you don’t have the same rights as a tenant.4 For example, the proprietor of
a hotel can lock out a guest who doesn’t pay his or her room charges on time, while a landlord
would have to begin formal eviction proceedings to evict a nonpaying tenant.
Residential hotels
???You have some of the legal rights of a tenant if you are a resident in a residential hotel,
which is in fact your primary residence.5 Residential hotel means any building which contains
six or more guest rooms or efficiency units which are designed, used, rented or occupied for
sleeping purposes by guests, and which is the primary residence of these guests.6 In residential
hotels, a lockin …
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