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The Laws Every St. Peters Renter Should Know

Landlord-Tenant Law Book Open on a DeskAs a renter, it’s critical to be familiar with the most essential state and federal laws affecting your rights and duties. These laws can help you be a better and more educated tenant. This can help you have a better experience and avoid future conflicts with your landlord. As a renter, you should be familiar with the following laws:

  • Warranty of Habitability. Although the term used varies by state, implied warranty of habitability laws are state laws that ensure that your rental unit is habitable. This implies that the rental home must fulfill certain minimum requirements for things like heat, water, and electricity in the majority of states.
  • Choosing a Tenant. Landlords have the authority to select their tenants under state and federal law. However, the laws require landlords to make decisions based on a tenant’s creditworthiness, income, or previous history. They can’t turn down a tenant because of their skin color, religion, sexual orientation, family status, or disability.
  • Fair Housing Act. The Fair Housing Act bans landlords from discriminating against tenants on the basis of protected characteristics such as race, religion, gender, national origin, and handicap. This 1968 statute allows renters who believe they have been discriminated against on the basis of one or more of these characteristics to file a complaint with the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), regardless of which state they reside in.
  • Limiting the Number of Children. A landlord cannot refuse to rent to a tenant based on the number of children the tenant has, as defined under the Fair Housing Act. Additionally, the legislation specifies that a landlord cannot prohibit minors from using common or outdoor places.
  • Service Animals. Service animals are considered a reasonable accommodation under federal rules such as the Americans with Disabilities Act, therefore landlords cannot simply prohibit them. They can’t charge you an extra pet fee or raise your rent because you have a service animal. Landlords, on the other hand, have the authority to require that a service animal be vaccinated, licensed, and registered in accordance with all state and local regulations.
  • Discriminatory Advertising. Additionally, landlords are prohibited from discriminating in their rental property advertisements under the federal Fair Housing Act administered by HUD. For instance, printing an advertisement saying that the landlord will not rent to single adults, persons of a specific age, or those who use wheelchairs are discriminatory advertising.
  • Security Deposits. There are regulations governing how your security deposit must be handled by a St. Peters property manager. In most situations, the law allows a landlord to collect and then retain your deposit, which may be used to complete repairs if you are careless and cause damage while living in the residence. Federal law establishes limits on the amount a landlord may ask for a security deposit; however, state law also applies.
  • Illegal Lockouts. While there is no federal legislation that renders locking out a tenant illegal, state laws explain the legal eviction process, which makes locking out a tenant from their rented house illegal. Eviction is a legal procedure that must be followed precisely or the landlord risks a court ruling in favor of the tenant.

 

If you’re looking for a St. Peters rental home and property manager who knows and will follow all tenant-landlord laws in Missouri, Real Property Management Three Bridges is who you can rely on. Browse our listings online to find your next rental home!

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.