For most people renter’s insurance is the one of the cheapest insurances you can buy. Most typical renter’s insurance policies are around $10-25/month.
Your Rights as a Renter
People rent for all sorts of different reasons, maybe you’re just branching out on your own and can’t afford to buy somewhere, maybe you’re a bit of a free spirit and like to be able to move around whenever you feel like it, maybe you’re living somewhere temporarily for your work or maybe you have a pants credit rating and nobody would give you a mortgage anyway! The fact is, millions of Americans rent their homes and it doesn’t matter where, when, how or why, they all have rights.
Rental insurance policies alleviate lots of worries for people in rented accommodation, but there are also rights which you ought to know. Learn your rights and don’t let anyone tell you differently.
- Discrimination – nobody can refuse to rent you accommodation on religious, sexual orientation, disability, race, color, ethnic origin or family status grounds. It’s against the law.
- Early termination of lease – even if you leave the property before the lease is up you are legally bound to continue paying the rent until the lease is finished, however, your landlord must make an effort to find a new tenant and if they don’t advertise, for example, you might not have to pay the rent.
- Habitability – any rental property must be habitable and meet local health and hygiene standards.
- Your privacy – your landlord cannot enter the property without giving you at least 24 hours notice, and even then is only permitted entry to make repairs or in an emergency.
- Attorney fees – this is dependent on the state where you live, but if there is a dispute some states will not permit your landlord to charge you for attorney fees.
- Security deposits – this is a good one and one which I’m sure you’ll want to know. Even if you are evicted, your security deposit must be returned to you within 14 – 30 days.
- Eviction – you cannot be legally evicted without reasonable notice. This varies from state to state but sometimes you will have to be given 90 days notice or maybe even longer.
- Retaliation – your landlord is not allowed to evict you as a way of getting back at you. Even if you have reported him for violating your rights, he cannot evict you for it.
- Repairs – repairs must be repaired quickly, and any which are required for health and safety regulations must be completed.
- Wear and tear – your landlord cannot retain any part of your security deposit for normal wear and tear.
So there you have it, just a few things which you might not be aware of but really do need to know if you are a renter. Landlords will often act on the assumption that you don’t know your basic rights, so make sure that you do!