The American Apartment Owners Association has provided a very helpful guide to Mold Remediation for Landlords. Here is their helpful guide to dealing with Mold issues.
We are talking about renting properties with tenants who have service animals. As a landlord, you need to be aware of your responsibilities and your tenant’s rights.
Service Animal Definition
The question always arises – what is a service animal? A service animal is trained to provide assistance to an individual with disabilities. For example, guide dogs and signal dogs can help people who have visual impairments.
Service Animals vs. Pets
Landlords that we deal with often don’t allow pets on their properties, but service animals are completely different. According to the Fair Housing Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act, a landlord is required to provide reasonable accommodations for tenants with disabilities. So, if your tenant is required to have a service animal, you need to provide accommodation for that. You cannot charge any extra deposits or higher monthly rents to have a service animal in place. This is different from our pet policy. If we have tenants with pets, we usually charge an extra monthly rent or we increase the deposit to allow the pet because there are increased costs. However, with service animals we cannot do that.
Health and Safety
A landlord may deny a tenant’s request to keep a service animal if there’s a direct threat to the health and safety of others or if the animal would cause physical damage to property of others. So, if you’re in a complex and there are a lot of common areas with personal property and the service animal is causing damage to that property, you can have the service animal removed.
Discussing the Disability
Another question that often arises is whether you can ask a tenant to prove their disability. We tend to wonder if a tenant is asking for a service animal without being disabled. You can ask them about their disability, and what they need for the accommodation. You can ask for documentation as well.
If you have any questions about service animals and how they differ from pets, please contact us at MSB Property Management. We have a lot of additional information, and we’d be happy to tell you more about property management in Walnut Creek.
If you have a luxury home for rent in Walnut Creek, it probably comes with a swimming pool. That has its perks, but it also has some liability. We’re talking about rentals with swimming pools today, and how to manage your pool safety.
There is a lot of upkeep and maintenance when it comes to swimming pools. You have to constantly check the PH levels, monitor the chlorine levels, clean the pool, and check the water. You must maintain the pumps, the filters, and the heaters. For that type of maintenance, we recommend you hire a professional pool contractor to service the pool on a regular basis. A good Walnut Creek property management company can help you hire someone reliable.
Talk to Tenants About Safety
We recommend that you really get to know your tenants before they move into your property and use the swimming pool. You want to know their abilities; if they can swim and if they have kids or toddlers who know how to swim. Taking a few proactive steps can save you from liability. You can offer to pay for some swimming lessons if there are children who don’t know how to swim. Sherman Swim School in Lafayette starts teaching kids to swim at 18 months old. That can help you decrease liability, and good tenants will appreciate the offer. When tenants move in with toddlers, you may need a fence or a pool cover or netting as additional safety precautions.
Make sure you add a pool addendum to your lease agreement. It should cover safety concerns and issues as well as maintenance responsibilities. Discuss the pool policies with your tenants, and have them sign the addendum.
The city of Richmond has a new rent control ordinance that became effective January 1, 2017. There’s also a just cause for eviction ordinance in place, and today, we’re talking about what that means. Continue reading
In general, the range of property management prices you’ll find in the Walnut Creek area are between six and 10 percent of your monthly rent collections. Typically, your property management company will collect rent, deduct any maintenance costs, and then give you a monthly accounting report with your rent, after they collect their own fee. Paying a monthly management fee is something you should always expect, but an important question to ask is whether there are any other fees are associated with property management. Continue reading
When you’re getting your property ready for the rental market, we always recommend that first, you do a lot of research and see what other properties are doing in the area. You want to know what kind of rent they’re asking and how the properties look. Take a close look at Continue reading
The ideal tenant pays rent on time, proactively takes care of your rental property, and follows the terms of your lease agreement. Not every tenant is going to be perfect, however. We get a lot of calls from landlords who are having issues with tenants, and they’re not sure what to do. Either they are not seeing eye to eye on certain policies and expectations, or the tenants are asking for continuous maintenance, or there are other situations where the landlord just doesn’t want to deal with their tenants anymore. You must handle these situations professionally. Continue reading
Security deposits can be challenging to manage, and it’s usually where most of the disputes between tenants and landlords originate. We get a lot of questions from people who aren’t sure how much they should charge for a security deposit. Our response is usually to ask how much they want. Continue reading