Landlord and Tenant Lawyers in Athens
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Landlord and Tenant Law in Georgia
The relationship between a landlord and tenant in Athens, Georgia can occasionally be a touchy one. Landlords and tenants are not always clear on their respective rights and obligations.
Landlords and tenants have to navigate a web of legal rights and commitments. It's essential that the parties to a landlord/tenant relationship know what obligations they have to one another.
Landlord's Rights in Athens, GA
The most basic right that landlords have is the right to be paid the agreed-upon rent by their tenant. Obviously, renting apartments is how landlords earn a living, so they are entitled to collect the rent that the tenant agreed to pay.
Landlords also have a right to be free from damage to the rented unit. Tenants are expected not to damage their dwellings, intentionally or negligently. Landlords can deduct the cost of repairs from the tenant's security deposit. In general, tenants are not liable for damage resulting from ordinary wear and tear.
Tenant's Rights in Athens, GA
Tenants, most essentially, have a right to a habitable apartment. After all, this is what they're paying for. Athens, Georgia landlords are obligated to see that the units they rent to tenants are fit to be lived in by people. Many different defects might render an apartment uninhabitable, such as serious infestations and other problems with sanitation, lack of running water or electricity, or failure to provide adequate protection from the outside elements.
In addition to habitable living spaces, tenants also have a right to reasonably safe common areas. Common areas contain lobbies, hallways, and stairwells - essentially anything that everyone living in an apartment complex has access to. These common areas must fulfill the building standards of Athens, Georgia, and must not contain any unnecessary safety hazards.
In the United States, and most likely under the laws of Georgia, it is unlawful for renters or sellers of real estate to discriminate on the basis of race, gender, national origin, color, or religion. Doing so can subject a landlord to harsh civil penalties. Also, they cannot discriminate based on physical disabilities, either. Tenants with physical disabilities, who are otherwise qualified to rent an apartment (they are able to pay, have good credit, etc.) are entitled to make reasonable modifications to the apartment to make it more accessible to them, and the landlord generally can't bar a tenant from doing this, as long as the modifications are not too extensive, and are reversible. The landlord can, however, require the tenant to remove the modifications, at the tenant's expense, when they move out.
And lastly, most state laws prevent landlords from arbitrarily evicting tenants. If the lease agreement is for a set period of time, the landlord generally can't evict the tenant until the lease expires, without a good reason. Valid causes for eviction include unpaid rent, illegal activities on the property, damage to the building caused by the tenant, and excessive noise.
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Can a Athens, Georgia Landlord/Tenant Lawyer Help?
Landlords and tenants usually prefer to avoid getting into fights with one another, for discernible reasons. A harmonious relationship is profitable for everyone involved. To that end, the advice of a good Athens, Georgia landlord/tenant attorney can help defuse arguments before they become too serious.
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Landlord & Tenant Attorneys in the Largest GA Cities
Life in AthensAthens, Georgia has a population of over 115,000 people and is located in the northeastern region of the state. Athens is actually a consolidated city-county, created by combing Clarke County and the city of Athens itself (also the county seat). Athens Is known for being home to the University of Georgia and is considered by many to be a premiere example of a college town.
As a college town, the student life drives much of Athens' social, intellectual, and cultural scene. In particular, music has always been a central tenet of life in Athens. Many restaurants, bars, and local establishments cater to the music scene and help to further the creative legacy of the city. Famous musical figures from Athens have included: R.E.M., the Indigo Girls, the Primates, and the Athens Boys Choir. The city hosts AthFest, which is an art and music festival held every summer.
Other popular events and attractions in Athens, Georgia include Naturalists' Walks, Contra Dance at Memorial Park, and the Twilight Series bicycle races held each spring. Some of the nation's most outstanding bar and grills are also located in Athens. Alongside its modern establishments, an abundance of American historical artifacts can also be found in the city.
Lawyers in Athens, Georgia often assist their clients at the Athens-Clarke County Superior Court. The Superior Court is located in the city and process a wide range of legal claims. Many Athens lawyers spend time researching legal inquiries at the Athens-Clarke County Law Library.