The Basics of Maryland Landlord-Tenant Laws
There are two aspects to keep in mind when it comes to Maryland landlord-tenant law:
1. The Tenant’s Right of Possession
2. The Landlord’s Right of Entry
Everything else pretty much bounces back and forth between these two principles of Maryland landlord-tenant laws. Think of it as a balance.
What Does the “Tenant’s Right of Possession” Mean?
Essentially, Maryland landlord-tenant law states that any landlord must verbally and/or in writing assure the tenant has possession of the property in question from the start of the lease term.
If the landlord, though, doesn’t provide that assurance – with the keys and everything – right on the date of the start of that lease term, by Maryland landlord-tenant law, the tenant can actually get that first month’s rent free.
Even if the contract’s already written up, under Maryland landlord-tenant laws, a tenant can cancel that lease if the landlord hasn’t provided that assurance. When the tenant cancels the lease, the landlord by Maryland landlord-tenant law must returns all monies and properties paid, such as:
1. Security Deposits
2. Prepaid Rent
What Does the “Landlord’s Right of Entry” Mean?
This is important to understand, because by Maryland landlord-tenant law, a landlord can’t simply walk into a property already possessed by the tenant. The Maryland landlord-tenant laws do state a reasonable right to privacy – that simply means no landlord can enter the property for any reason. A tenant can actually charge a landlord with trespassing in that event under Maryland landlord-tenant laws.
On the other hand, the “landlord’s right of entry” states that a landlord can enter the property under MD landlord-tenant law for certain reasons:
3. New Tenant Showings
Of course, under MD landlord-tenant law the landlord must give the current tenant notification – 24 hours notice for Prince George’s County – that he or she must enter the property. In addition, the tenant doesn’t even have to be present for the landlord to enter.
Now What is “Quiet Enjoyment” and “Constructive Eviction”?
Clever terms. But by MD landlord-tenant law, they make a lot of sense.
“Quiet enjoyment” is established as an MD landlord-tenant law and right for the tenant to enjoy the property without interference from neighbors or other entities – and the landlord can be held accountable for it simply because the landlord has the power to take action on those entities.
If the landlord does not, that can constitute a violation of the tenant’s right to enjoy the property quietly.
“Constructive Eviction” is when a tenant is actually allowed to abandon the premises if that “quiet enjoyment” has been violated. The tenant doesn’t have to pay the rent for further months required by contract, and the landlord must even reimburse the tenant for moving costs and other such expenses.
It’s all laid out by MD landlord-tenant law.
It’s a Business Relationship
In the end, it’s a contract that must be fully recognized by the law. And both sides have their parts in it.
Knowing rights is important. This is only a small part of it – but definitely a valid part. As you can imagine that some of this might not have been common knowledge at all.