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This article is intended to be a general discussion only, and should not be considered legal or real estate advice. Your use of it does not create either an attorney-client or broker-client relationship. Any liability that might arise from your use or reliance on this article, or any of its links, is expressly disclaimed. This blog is not legal, real estate, loan, accounting or tax advice, and is not to be acted on as such, it was outdated the moment it was written, and is subject to change without notice. If you are dealing with a potential problem with your investment property you are advised to retain the appropriate licensed professional. This article is not meant to apply to a rent controlled area in which special rules may apply.
As you read this article keep in mind that it was written for the owners of property located in the State of California. This is critically important because the state statutes, case law, and public policies can vary widely from state to state.
If you are an absentee owner who has decided to manage your own property it’s best you thoroughly familiarize yourself with the territory. This serialized blog is an attempt to identify at least some of the potentially serious issues faced by an inexperienced owner.
Over time the real estate industry, state and federal legislatures, and the courts have all contributed to a growing list of landlord disclosures which should and in most cases must be made to the prospective tenant.
If the leased unit was constructed before 1978, the landlord must disclose the presence of any known lead-paint or lead-based paint hazards in the dwelling before the tenant signs the lease. At the same time the landlord must give the tenant a copy of the currently approved federal government pamphlet on lead hazards.
While the landlord must make the disclosure he is not required to evaluate the lead based paint or to correct the problem. The lead warning (the required language) must be delivered and acknowledged in writing.
Periodic Pesticide Treatments
When a pest control company is retained to perform an on-going pest control service it must provide a written report to both the landlord and the tenant regarding the pesticides being used. If a new tenant moves in during this time period the landlord must give any new tenants a copy of the written pesticide report.
Landlords who have applied for permits to demolish the rented property must give written notice of this to to prospective tenants before accepting any deposits and entering into any rental agreements. There are specific requirements of what must be included in the written notice.
If an owner knows that the rental property is located within a mile of a military installation at which ammunition or explosives were used written notice of this fact must be given to the prospective tenant before the lease is signed.
Death Occurring In The Unit
If a death has occurred within the rental property within the last three years (this time limit may be subject to change) the owner must disclose to the prospective tenant at the time of the offer to rent the unit. The owner must disclose the manner of death, but is not required to disclose that the occupant was ill with, or died from AIDS. Owner, however, may not intentionally misrepresent the cause of death in response to a direct question.
This hasn’t been an exhaustive discussion. As you can imagine there are a number of other necessary disclosures including subjects such as condominium conversion projects, asbestos, carcinogenic materials, methamphetamine contamination, disclosure of agency relationships as well as various known nuisances (animal, mineral, human or otherwise) affecting the property and/or the enjoyment of the property.
The fact that the disclosure requirements are spread out in a number of different federal and state codes only make matters more complex and confusing. It is a wise owner who takes the issues surrounding disclosures seriously and discloses to the prospective tenant anything and everything he himself would like to know if he were the tenant.
- CALIFORNIA LANDLORDS – Chapter 2, Rental Agreements and Leases Do You Use a Written or an Oral agreement and should it be a Lease or Peridic Rental Agreement?
- CALIFORNIA LANDLORDS – Chapter 1, Discrimination Chapter 1 of a serialized virtual book discussing the issues which must be faced by absentee owners attempting to manage their own properties in California
- CALIFORNIA LANDLORDS – Table of Contents This is a hyperlinked Table of Contents designed to connect you to the blog entries which comprise the various chapters of the California Landlords…
- California Statute Lookup Search assisted access to the California Statute
- California Case Law Lookup FindLaw offers free comprehensive California case law from 1934 to the present.
OTHER INTERESTING AND INFORMATIVE INFORMATION SOURCES
- Full Service Property Management In Orange County California A informative website presented by OC Property Management providing usefull information to both landlords and tenants.
- RISMedia Media Center Video presentations of timely real estate topics.
- Real Estate Today Radio The premier online real estate radio station.
- Dangerous Tenancies California courts have failed to provide a clear definition of the liability of landlords for the tortious or illegal acts of their tenants.
- California Pesticide Product Data Search supported pesticide lookup
OC Property Management & Sales, Inc.
DRE Lic# 01886215
This article is intended to be a general discussion only, and should not be considered legal or real estate advice. Your use of it does not create either an attorney-client or broker-client relationship. Any liability that might arise from your use or reliance on this article, or any of its links, is expressly disclaimed. This blog is not legal, real estate, loan, accounting or tax advice, and is not to be acted on as such, it was outdated the moment it was written, and is subject to change without notice. If you are dealing with a potential problem with your investment property you are advised to retain the appropriate licensed professional.