Landlord Tenant Consents Law and Legal Definition

There are several situations in which a tenant may give a consent to a landlord. One may be the consent of a prospective tenant to release background information to a landlord. Another is the consent of a tenant to have the landlord enter the premises. State statutes, which vary by state, typically provide that the tenant may not “unreasonably withhold consent” to landlord access to do the following: inspect the premises, make necessary or agreed repairs, decorations, alterations, or improvements, supply necessary or agreed services, remove personal property belonging to the landlord that is not covered by a written rental agreement, or exhibit the dwelling unit to prospective or actual purchasers, mortgagees, tenants, workers, or contractors.

Generally, a landlord may enter with or without notice and consent in an emergency only. Landlord otherwise must give at notice (writing typically not explicitly required) if practical, and may only enter if tenant gives consent, otherwise must proceed to legal remedies. Often, in the case of extended absence, the landlord may enter on notice with or without consent and terminate tenancy if there is evidence of abandonment. The landlord may only enter at reasonable times. A landlord may also provide that his or her consent to a tenant must be obtained in the event of an assignment of the lease.

The right of a tenant to have the only key to the rented property is governed by the local laws and the terms of the lease. For example, a lease may contain a clause providing that if a landlord enters the residential premises illegally, the tenant may apply for an arbitrator’s order under the a local residential tenancy law, to change the locks for the residential premises and keep the only key. At the end of the tenancy, the tenant must give the key to the residential premises to the landlord. Laws vary by state and city, so local laws should be consulted for specific requirements in your area.