A brief guide to Vermont landlord-tenant laws
Whether searching for a place to reside temporarily or renting out your property, it is important to be aware of all regulations concerning leases. Vermont landlord-tenant law grants both parties certain protections, as well as assigning both additional responsibilities. To be sure your rights under VT landlord-tenant laws are being not taken advantage of, here are some things to be aware of.
Before entering into any rental agreement, Vermont landlord-tenant laws allow you to physically examine the property in question. Make sure wiring and plumbing are in good in condition. If any repairs seem to be needed, you have the right under Vermont landlord-tenant law to request that they be made before you move into the property. Document any such agreement in writing.
To ensure you have guarded yourself under potential future disputes concerning violations of Vermont landlord-tenant laws, all contracts should be as detailed as possible. A rental agreement should detail the amount you will pay in rent, the date on which you will be expected to make your payment, and which party will be responsible for paying utility bills.
Vermont landlord-tenant law prohibits anyone from charging a fee in order to submit a rent application. However, VT landlord-tenant laws allow them to have you fill out a form as a condition of being considered. While Vermont landlord-tenant laws place no limit on what kind of information can be requested, property owners should be aware that doing so may open themselves up to litigation related to discrimination charges.
After assuming tenancy of a property, VT landlord-tenant laws state you must allow a landlord to enter to perform an inspection. However, Vermont landlord-tenant law does not allow a property owner to enter without your permission. Any inspection should be scheduled in advance for a mutually agreeable time and documented in law. Vermont landlord-tenant laws state that you must maintain a reasonable level of cleanliness and safety.
If a property owner is dissatisfied with any aspect of your tenancy, you fail to pay your rent, or you cause a disturbance, VT landlord-tenant laws allow you to be evicted. Property owners may evict people who rent from them for many other causes under Vermont landlord-tenant law. However, they must follow correct legal procedure to do so. For example, it is a violation of Vermont landlord-tenant laws to simply change the locks on your door.
You may wish to detail the steps that will be taken in case of a legal dispute when creating a rental contract, such as attending mediation. Be aware that Vermont landlord-tenant law forbids property owners from inserting clauses into this document that violate your rights, such as forcing you to pay for their legal expenses in case of litigation. Even if you sign such a document, this clause of a contract will be deemed legally invalid under VT landlord-tenant laws.
If mediation sessions do not resolve your differences, you may need to go to small claims or civil court to resolve a violation of your contract or rights under Vermont landlord-tenant laws. You may represent yourself or retain a lawyer to help you understand VT landlord-tenant laws.