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Disputes over repairs and other tenant issues

Landlords face many various challenges involving tenants, whether they involve the non-payment of rent or breaking a lease. However, many other different matters can lead to a dispute between a landlord and their tenant, and these disagreements can become very difficult to deal with. For example, a landlord may be accused of failing to make necessary repairs, even when the areas of concern were addressed. Or, a tenant may accuse a landlord of being a “slumlord” for failing to repair something around the rental when they were never even informed in the first place.

Our law firm fully recognizes how frustrating it can be when these disputes arise as a landlord. You may feel as if you have nowhere to turn, or that your side of the story will be dismissed. Moreover, you may be overwhelmed by other hurdles you are trying to work through, such as problems with other rental properties, another job or personal challenges that have arisen (a health crisis, problems with family members, etc.).

Can a landlord evict a tenant over noise?

Noisy neighbors in Santa Cruz can be a real pain, especially for landlords. There are steps you can take if the noise is coming from other tenants, including evicting the responsible parties if your other requests fall on deaf ears. The Balance recommends the following advice in this case, which helps landlords protect themselves as well as create a welcoming environment for all tenants.

Establish that the complaint is valid

How can I prevent contract disputes?

When entering into a contract in Santa Cruz, there is always a risk of issues occurring. While you can’t always prevent disputes, there are steps you can take to lower that chance that a signee finds fault with some portion of the contract, or even potentially side-step issues related to fraud. explains how you can mitigate potential problems related to contract disputes before they occur.

Focus on cost

How can I prevent disputes when co-owning property?

When you enter into a real estate co-ownership relationship in Santa Cruz, you greatly reduce the risk of purchasing property as an individual. However, there are certain steps you must take to ensure the arrangement is a success, otherwise you run the risk of losing the property you worked so hard to attain or incurring legal recrimination. explains what you can do to make the endeavor a success.

Make sure responsibilities are divided

Is my landlord responsible for mold growth?

Mold growth in your Santa Cruz rental is a very serious matter for a number of reasons. Certain types of mold are known to exacerbate existing respiratory issues, and growth can damage the belongings of tenants. Many renters want to know if their landlords are responsible for mold found within their homes, especially when health issues result. To this end, offers the following guidance.

Some homes encourage mold growth

Tenants: Your rights in breaking a rental lease in California

You moved into a home, and you are disgusted by its conditions. You were not looking for perfection, but you feel unclean and unsafe at the property. Although the landlord deemed all elements of the home to be in working order, you want to break your lease terms.

In California, if you sign a lease agreement for a home that you cannot live in adequately, you may legally terminate your lease. You want to ensure that your claim is valid by hiring a committed and experienced landlord-tenant attorney who can provide you with advice on your specific circumstances. Know that if you sign a lease for a home that is inhabitable, you have the right to move without repercussions.

How can I create a solid rental agreement?

The first element to a successful landlord/tenant relationship is the rental agreement. In order for your tenants in Santa Cruz to explicitly understand their responsibilities they must be clearly stated within the lease, whether they pertain to rent amounts or conduct within a home. offers the following tips on creating a solid and legally binding lease agreement for your tenants.

Make sure all your bases are covered

Determining whether joint tenancy is right for you

Before you and another party such as a spouse, partner, friend or sibling decide to buy California real estate together, you have a number of decisions to make. One of the most important is if joint tenancy is best for your situation. We at the Law Office of Leo B. Siegel often provide legal counsel to people who want to co-own property.

According to Home Express, one of your biggest benefits of joint tenancy could be the avoidance of probate. During probate, the executor of the estate lists all the assets and liabilities of the deceased person, and if the liabilities exceed the assets, the property may have to be sold to pay the creditors or taxes. If three people co-own a home, and one dies, his or her share may be sold during probate unless they have joint tenancy with right of survivorship. In that case, the two surviving owners each get half of the deceased owner's share.

Is there a right way to evict your tenant?

Over the course of the last several months, you have run into some problems with your tenants and are beginning to question their ability to maintain the terms of the contract they signed at the beginning of their lease in California. While you have carefully weighed your options, you are leaning towards evicting them and putting out feelers for some new tenants that show promise of being a better fit. Understanding the right way to go about executing an eviction is crucial to prevent legal consequences on your end and to ensure you maintain civility and decency. 

What you should always remember is that your tenants deserve a second chance in many cases. For example, if they are past due on a single payment or perhaps violated one of the terms of the contract, as long as it does not affect you too deeply, it is probably in the best interest of both parties to allow some mercy. However, if problems persist and you have exhausted all of your other means, eviction can be a viable solution to regain traction and allow yourself to move forward. 

3 common real estate scams

While you would assume that the people you’re dealing with in the real estate market are on the up and up, this sadly is not always the case. In fact, there are numerous frauds that homeowners, buyers, and even renters must avoid, from wasting money trying to modify their loans or investment scams promising limitless riches (which never materialize). Forbes offers the following information on three common scams and how you can avoid them.

Fraudulent Rentals


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