FBS Apartments, Condos and Homes For Rent in 69 zip codes throughout the S.D. Region
FBS operates Rental Properties for Independent Owners utilizing Industry Best Practices which creates direct benefits to our Rental Customers. We have provided Superior Housing Alternatives now in our 5th Decade. Our available rental inventory changes daily. www.fbs-pm.com
As professional managers we must stay on top of local, state and federal laws, regulations and housing codes that are imperative to our clients and rental customers. We review and update our contracts, policies, forms and routines with the help of KTS (Kimball, Tirey and St. John).
Here are some situations we have asked Ted Kimball to weigh in on -
I rent out a three-bedroom home with a covered patio that I have turned into a fourth bedroom. There are four individual people renting. My question is, can I call it renting rooms or am I renting a house to four different people?
It is better if you rent the house to all four under one lease with each tenant being “jointly and severally” liable, meaning they are individually responsible for the lease, as well as collectively.
We have a policy of allowing prospective tenants who have poor credit to qualify if they have a qualified guarantor sign the lease. We want to change that policy. Do we have to do anything legally speaking to modify our policy?
Answer: Be sure to document the details of the new screening policy in your files, including the business reason for the change in policy and the effective date that it will be implemented. That way, if someone claims they were given different screening criteria than someone else, you have documentation to show there was a good business reason for the policy and when the new policy came into effect.
In order to screen prospective tenants, I want to establish a standard of income/debt vs. rent. Is this legal in California?
Many landlords use a formula to determine qualification of residents based upon their financial stability. The industry standard is to establish a rent-to-income ratio (for example the combined household income must be at least 2.5 times the monthly rent). Debts are usually included as part of the credit standard rather than the income standard. If you decide to include debt in the income v. rent ratio, be sure to set clear and objective criteria about the standard and how it will be applied to avoid potential claims of discriminatory treatment.
The previous owner of an apartment building I recently purchased allowed the tenants to pay half a month’s rent on the first and the other half on the fifteenth of the month. The lease, however, says it is all due on the first and I want to enforce the lease. What, if any legal problems do I face?
California judges may find that there has been a modification of the payment terms of the agreement by “mutual consent and execution” of the new payment terms. Many leases have a provision which states that one waiver of strict enforcement of the terms does not constitute a continuous waiver for subsequent breaches. If the agreement contains this clause, the court should rule that the rent is all due on the first of the month.
One of our tenants is complaining about the carpet and says it is California law that the carpeting must be changed every seven years. Have you heard of any law on this subject?
California law does not require landlord to replace carpeting, unless the condition of the carpet creates a health hazard or risk of injury.
When tenants give notice that they will be vacating the residence, is it permissible for me to give them a notice stating that I will be advertising the vacancy and will be showing their apartment?
Unless the tenant agrees to another arrangement, you would be required to give reasonable notice (24 hours) in writing for every entry.
I have a “Guarantee of Rental Agreement” from the mother of a tenant. The tenant is twelve days late with the rent. Do I have an obligation to notify the mother and give her the chance to pay? What is my recourse against her if she refuses to live up to the guarantee agreement?
Notifying the guarantor may be a requirement depending upon the language of the guarantee agreement. You may want to advise the guarantor in any event and send her a courtesy copy of the three-day notice before taking action.
Is it necessary that a notice to perform or quit be for three days, or can I choose to give an otherwise good tenant more time to solve the problem?
You can give the tenant more time to respond to a breach, but it should end with a three-day notice. You could write the tenant that you are going to allow them to cure the breach by a certain date and if not cured by then, a three-day notice to perform will be served.