Use LandlordStation.com's general overview of the Kansas landlord tenant act to empower yourself with the knowledge you should have as landlord. Not only do you need a basic understanding of Kansas rental laws, you also need to know how they apply to both you and your tenant. This knowledge can help you be better at your job by giving you the tools you require to not only set up a solid lease agreement, but also anticipate conflict, and protect yourself legally. What follows is a very general overview of Kansas landlord tenant law and should not be taken as legal advice. For legal advice regarding your specific situation, contact an experienced lawyer.
The Kansas landlord tenant act begins in Chapter 58, Article 25 of the law and is also known as the Kansas Residential Landlord and Tenant Act. The statutes outline what agreements are covered by Kansas rental laws, applicable legal definitions, and the rights, responsibilities, and redresses for both landlord and tenant in this state. It is important to note that the Kansas landlord tenant act is not the only set of laws governing your landlord-tenant relationship. Federal laws and city and local county codes may also apply, so stay abreast of those as well.
Before you can understand anything else about Kansas landlord tenant law, you must understand the difference between the dictionary and legal definitions of terms. Under its landlord tenant laws, Kansas has specific legal definitions for words like "owner," "rent," and "premises," which may differ from the general definition. Some examples of legal definitions that are important for you to know include the following:
Landlord – the owner, lessor, or sub-lessor of the rental premises. May or may not be the owner.
Owner – a person who is either singularly or jointly vested in all or part of the legal title to the property and has a right to all or part of beneficial ownership, including the right to prevent use and enjoyment of the premises. May or may not be the landlord.
Tenant – a person entitled under a written or oral agreement to exclusively occupy a dwelling unit and/or its premises
Rental Agreement – all oral or written agreements that embody the terms and conditions of use and occupancy of a dwelling and/or its premises.
Premises – a dwelling unit, its containing structure, and the facilities and appurtenances within, as well as any grounds, areas, and facilities generally used by tenants or promised for use by tenant.
These definitions are important for you to understand because even though a business relationship might seem as though it should be covered by the landlord tenant act, it may not be covered by it. This includes commercial rental agreements, residence at a public or private institution rendering medical, geriatric, educational counseling, religious, or similar services, occupancy under a sales contract, occupancy of a fraternal or social organization by its members, and transient occupancy of a hotel, motel, or boarding house.
When entering into a rental agreement that is governed by the Kansas Residential Landlord and Tenant Act, Landlord Station strongly recommends you use a written lease agreement which both you and your tenant should sign. This protects both parties by making the landlord and tenant aware of any and all expectations. However, under its landlord tenant laws, Kansas prevents lease agreements from superseding certain required rights and responsibilities. These include:
• Landlord's duty to comply with applicable building and housing codes that affect health and safety and exercise reasonable care in common area maintenance
• Landlord's duty to supply running water, provide and maintain garbage receptacles for common use of all tenants on the grounds, and maintain all electrical, plumbing, sanitary, heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems in safe working order
• Landlord's duty to give reasonable notification of intent to enter property, except for in times of life-threatening or property-threatening circumstances
• Landlord's duty to obtain a court order or eviction notice before diminishing services or locking out the tenant due to a failure to pay rent
• Tenant's responsibility to keep the rental premises under his or her control as clean and safe as possible
• Tenant's responsibility to remove all waste from rental dwelling in clean and safe manner
• Tenant's responsibility to use all electrical, plumbing, sanitary, heating, ventilation, and air conditioning in a reasonable manner
• Tenant's responsibility for any destruction, defacement, damage, impairment, or removal of any part of the rental premises caused by his or her own acts or negligence or the acts or negligence of a guest on the premises
• Tenant's responsibility to respect and have his or her guests and pets respect the peaceful enjoyment of the premises by other tenants
• Tenant's responsibility to give 30 days' written notice of intent to move
If either party fails to fulfill his or her responsibilities or violates the other's rights, there are legal remedies that are available. These can include severe ramifications like civil suits and evictions, which is why it is important for you as landlord to know everything you can about Kansas rental laws. A general understanding of the law, its definitions, and both you and your tenant's rights and responsibilities can help you proactively anticipate, and perhaps avoid, conflict.
LandlordStation.com hopes this information has been helpful to you, and that you now have a better understanding of the Kansas landlord tenant act. Remember, this is not to be taken as legal advice. For specific legal advice regarding your set of rental circumstances, please consult an experienced Kansas attorney.
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