LandlordStation.com knows that knowledge of South Dakota landlord tenant law is key to preventing conflict in the landlord-tenant relationship, or at the very least can successfully and easily resolve any conflict that does arise. That's why we are providing you with the following general overview of South Dakota landlord tenant laws. Please note that we are not authorized to give legal advice, and if you need legal advice regarding landlord or tenant rights in South Dakota, you should consult an attorney experienced in the state's leasing laws.
The section of the South Dakota statutes that covers rental agreements addresses the "Lease of Real Property" in the state and is covered under Chapter 43-32. Generally, the landlord is either the owner of the rental unit or an agent that the owner has engaged and/or paid to maintain the unit. The tenant is any person who is paying a landlord in exchange for temporary use and occupancy of any real property. It is important to note that lease agreements in South Dakota can be written or oral, and oral agreements are as legally binding as your standard written lease agreement.
As the landlord of a property, you have the unique opportunity to proactively prevent potential conflict or issues between yourself and a tenant, or tenants, by understanding both aspects of the South Dakota landlord tenant law. Of course, knowing your rights and responsibilities is essential – but also knowing tenant responsibilities and tenant rights in South Dakota can only be beneficial.
This may seem like a lot to learn and know, but really all it boils down to are two principles – keeping the property clean, healthy, and habitable, and protecting both parties' rights to financial security. Though the South Dakota landlord tenant law allows for oral agreements, Landlord Station strongly believes in having a written rental agreement that covers provisions like the rental period, monthly rent amount, rent due date, late fees, and even specifics like pet policies, yard care, and other conditions.
During and after the establishment of the rental agreement, keep in mind the following:
•It is the tenant's responsibility to repair any damage to the rental premises caused by his or her negligence, the negligence of their family or guests, or their pet.
•Every tenant has a right to the "quiet enjoyment" of their rental property, meaning each tenant should be free from unreasonable interference by the landlord or other people.
•Every tenant also has the responsibility of respecting the "quiet enjoyment" of any other tenants on the property.
•A landlord has the right to reasonable inspection of the rental property, but only with prior notice to the tenant and at a reasonable time – unless there is an emergency.
•A landlord has the right to court-ordered entry or eviction when a tenant unreasonably prevents the landlord lawful access.
•It is the responsibility of the landlord to keep the rental property in reasonable repair and fit for human habitation, including, but not limited to, the maintenance of all electrical, plumbing, and heating systems.
•A tenant has the right to two potential possibilities if the landlord fails to make the repairs in a reasonable time: make the repairs and deduct the cost from rent, or vacate the premises.
•A landlord has the right to require a security deposit.
•Under certain circumstances, the landlord has a right to evict the tenant by court order.
•The landlord has the responsibility of giving one full rental period’s notice – usually 30 days – before requiring the tenant to move.
•The tenant has a right against retaliatory evictions.
It is usually best to include both your rights and responsibilities as a landlord and your tenant's rights and responsibilities under South Dakota landlord tenant law in the written lease agreement, then encourage your tenants to go over the agreement thoroughly before they sign. Hopefully, your tenant will be as knowledgeable as you about the pertinent laws so that conflict can be prevented and any issues can be resolved quickly and efficiently.
By being proactive about learning both yours and your tenant or tenants' responsibilities and rights under South Dakota landlord tenant law, you are taking the preventative approach to being a landlord. Remember, this general overview provided by LandlordStation.com is merely information and should not be taken as legal advice. For specific legal advice regarding your case or any other issues under South Dakota leasing laws, contact a licensed and experienced attorney.
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