An experienced Parker TX landlord lawyer understands the challenges of owning a property. While property ownership can be fruitful, it can also be complex. To protect your investments, contact our lawyers at Girling Law. We will defend your rights as a landlord.
The Importance of a Well-Written Lease
A lease agreement outlines the terms, rights and conditions a renter and landlord must follow. In the State of Texas, lease agreements can either be verbal or written. While verbal contracts are more easily disputed, written contracts are harder to contest. By crafting a well-written agreement, you can detail every obligation expected by both parties. Contact a Parker TX landlord lawyer to help you draft a solid lease agreement.
Your Written Lease Should Contain the Following
Let a seasoned attorney at Girling Law help you create a lease that protects your best interests. We will help you address the following issues in your written agreement:
- Rent amount
- When rent must be paid
- Lease terms
- Requirements for security deposits
- Requirements for pet deposits
- Legal actions in the event a lease is breached
- Ground for eviction
- Holdover tenant terms
- Each party’s legal rights and duties
- Assigning rights
- Property maintenance
- Lease termination requirements
With the help of a Parker TX landlord lawyer, your written lease agreement will preserve your rights as a landlord.
Your Rights to Enter Leased Property
In the State of Texas, the law protects a tenants right to privacy. Once a renter starts their lease, your right to enter that leased property becomes severely restricted. While the law does not specify a required time of notice a landlord must provide before entering a leased property, we generally advise you to give at least twenty-four hours notice.
Your written lease can also outline reasons you may legally enter a property. For instance, your lease may allow you to enter a property for repairs or to show prospective tenants the rental unit. A knowledgeable Parker TX landlord lawyer can help draft an agreement that allows you as much access to the property as the law permits.
We advise landlords to not enter any leased property for reasons not outlined in the lease agreement. By unlawfully entering a property, you expose yourself to civil liability. This liability can give your tenants grounds to terminate their lease.
Security Deposit Requirements
Under Texas law, landlords can establish the requirements for security deposits and where the money is held. Conversely, the law also requires landlords to return any security deposit to their tenants within thirty-days from lease end.
When appropriate, a landlord has the right to deduct money from a tenant’s security deposit. Some reasons to deduct funds includes:
- To cover any unpaid rent
- For repairs exceeding normal wear and tear
- Early lease termination
- For excessive cleaning costs
- To cover unpaid utilities
If you deduct funds from a security deposit to cover repairs or cleaning costs, it is important to keep detailed records, such as receipts and pictures.
If you fail to return your tenant’s security deposit, they can sue you for up to three times the value of the deposit, as well as for any attorney’s costs and fees. Contact a Parker TX landlord lawyer to help limit your potential liability and defend you from such claims.
Repairs to the Property
Typically, a landlord is responsible for making repairs to the property. If you refuse to make these repairs, your tenant can complete the job instead and deduct the costs from their rent. Sometimes disputes arise over repairs or damages, which can lead to litigation. Our seasoned attorneys will aggressively defend you from any wrongful repair claim.
Your Right to Evict a Tenant
You have the right to evict a tenant for the following reasons:
- Failing to pay rent
- Engaging in actions restricted by the lease
- Participating in acts of public indecency
- Turning into a holdover tenant
Contact a Parker TX landlord lawyer to help determine if you can evict a particular tenant.
Notice to Vacate
Before you legally evict a tenant, you must provide them a Notice to Vacate. Your notice must include the following:
- Date of service
- Renter’s contact information
- Eviction notice cause
- Date they must move out by
- Statement outlining your right to initiate legal action to remove your tenant
- Description for how the notice was served
If you are evicting a tenant for unpaid rent, in the State of Texas, you must give them three days before filing the eviction in court. Our Parker TX landlord lawyer will help ensure your compliance with the law when serving an eviction notice.
Defending You in Court
If you find yourself in court, our knowledgeable attorneys will employ a variety of defense strategies to help you achieve a successful outcome.
Contact a Parker TX Landlord Lawyer Today
To speak to an experienced Parker TX landlord lawyer at Girling Law, call (817) 864-8228 today.