Q:

What are common renters' rights in California?

A:

Quick Answer

California law stipulates that renters have the right to occupy a rental unit with working utilities, plumbing, electrical and heating systems, according to the California Department of Consumer Affairs. Renters have the right to live in a habitable space that complies with health and building codes.

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Full Answer

Renters in California have the right to timely repairs that render the property inhabitable, according to the California Department of Consumer Affairs. Typically, the landlord must maintain the property to ensure it is liveable, although the tenant may be required to keep the property undamaged and clean as designated by the rental lease agreement.

Renters also have the right to receive a security deposit less any repairs or damage costs as designated by the rental agreement, according to the California Department of Consumer Affairs. If a landlord seeks to evict a renter for non-payment, nuisance or damage, the renter has the right to receive written notice, a summons and documentation of an eviction lawsuit and the right to defend the case in a court hearing. The landlord must provide 30- or 60-day notice for termination of the lease or eviction and must provide evidence in court proceedings that the renter violated the lease agreement or engaged in wrongdoing that justifies termination.

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