Q:

What are a tenant's rights in California?

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Quick Answer

Tenants in California have a multitude of rights that cover rent increases, rent payment method, when the landlord can enter the housing unit, repairs and habitability, according to the California Department of Consumer Affairs. Some of these rights depend on the length and terms of the rental agreement.

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Full Answer

A landlord in California cannot require a tenant to pay rent in cash unless they have been paid with a dishonored check within the past three months, states the California Department of Consumer Affairs. Additionally, a rental agreement for more than 30 days cannot have any rent increases throughout the term of the lease. The landlord can only enter the housing unit during normal business hours and with reasonable advance notice; 24 hours advance written notice is seen as reasonable by the law in most situations.

There is an implied warranty of habitability with all rental agreements, notes the California Department of Consumer Affairs. This means that landlords must maintain housing units fit for humans to live in. It is generally the landlords responsibility to take care of serious repairs to the unit. Less serious repairs that need to be made may fall into the tenant's responsibility depending on the rental agreement. Tenants also have certain responsibilities, such as not destroying or damaging the property.

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