Landlord-tenant laws help protect both parties involved in a lease or rental agreement. In Arizona, these laws are outlined in the Arizona Landlord-Tenant Act.
After a prospective tenant signs the lease, they are automatically granted certain rights. For example, the right to habitable dwelling, the right to fair treatment, and the right to be provided certain disclosures.
As a landlord, the lease agreement also gives you certain rights, such as the right to collect weekly or monthly rent payments, the right to enter rented premises, and the right to evict a squatter or a tenant for lease violation.
In this post, we are giving you a basic overview of the Arizona landlord-tenant law.
Required Landlord Disclosures in Arizona
As a landlord in Arizona, you have a responsibility to disclose certain information to your tenants.
Here are some of the things a landlord must disclose:
- Move-in Documents. Landlords must provide tenants with several documents immediately after they move into your rental unit. That is, a copy of the written rental agreement, a move-in form specifying any existing damages to the dwelling, and a written notice to the tenant stating their right to be present during the move-out inspection.
- Bedbug Disclosure. Landlords must provide tenants with educational materials on bedbugs. Also, they must not rent out a unit that is currently infested with bedbugs.
- Name and addresses. Landlords must disclose to their tenant the name and address of the property owner.
- Security Deposit. Landlords must also let their tenant know of the security deposit amount, as well as their security deposit rights.
- Disclosure of Landlord and Tenant Act. Before lease signing, Arizona landlords must inform their tenant that the Arizona Residential Landlord and Tenant Act is available on the Arizona Department of housing’s website.
Tenants’ Rights & Responsibilities
When Arizona tenants rent a rental property, they have the right to:
- Be provided certain disclosures.
- Continue living in their rented premises until the landlord has followed the lawful eviction procedure.
- Withhold rent if the landlord fails to make needed or requested repairs until the repairs are completed.
- Terminate the lease without any further responsibilities under certain circumstances.
- Live in a habitable dwelling unit.
- A move-out inspection.
- Be treated equally and fairly as per the dictates of the Federal Fair Housing Act.
An Arizona tenant also has certain responsibilities. Tenant obligations include:
- Notifying the landlord of issues related to maintenance or repairs.
- Notifying the landlord when looking to vacate their premises.
- Abiding by all terms of the rental agreement.
- Maintaining reasonable noise levels.
- Letting the landlord know when they will be staying out of town for an extended period of time.
An Overview of the Landlord-Tenant Laws in Arizona
1. Fair Housing
In Arizona, much like everywhere else, it’s illegal for landlords to:
- Refuse to make reasonable accommodations to people living with disability.
- Make false claims about a unit’s availability.
- Make discriminative advertisements indicating preference for or against someone based on their protected characteristic.
- Charge more for a tenant's rent or fees.
The Fair Housing Act prohibits such actions against a tenant based on their protected characteristic. The characteristics include color, race, sex, disability, familial status and national origin.
2. Landlord Entry
As a landlord, you’ll need to enter your tenant’s rented unit at some point in their tenancy. Common reasons for landlord entry in Arizona include: property inspection, repairs and maintenance, and emergency cases.
That being said, your tenant has a right to privacy. As such, you cannot just enter their rented premises as you like: you must first notify them. Different states have different laws in this regard. As an Arizona landlord, you must provide tenants a written notice of at least 2 days.
3. Small Claims Court
Small claims court is a special division of the justice court. They are designed to help parties resolve disputes quickly and cheaply. The rules are simple and informal.
In Arizona, small claims courts can only hear cases under $3,500.
Some of the cases that the court may hear include those involving a tenant's security deposit, privacy violations, and lease or rent-related issues. A small claims court will, however, not hear cases involving tenant evictions.
4. Lease Termination
If your tenant wishes to terminate their lease, then they must provide you proper notice. The notice amount depends on the rent payment frequency. For week-to-week tenants, they must provide you a notice of at least 10 days. For month-to-month tenants, they must provide you a notice of at least 30 days.
Tenants are not required to give you notice that they intend to terminate the lease for other types of rental agreements, such as quarter-to-quarter and year-to-year.
What’s more, Arizona tenants are permitted to break their lease early for certain reasons. If a tenant decides to terminate the lease, they can do so legally for the following reasons:
- Landlord harassment
- Violation of their privacy rights
- Habitability issues
- Active military duty
- Domestic violence victims
5. Tenant Evictions
You can evict your Arizona tenant for certain reasons, including, not paying rent, violation of the lease agreement, and illegal acts.
During the tenant eviction, you must follow the proper eviction procedures for it to be successful. To begin, the first thing you should do is serve the tenant with proper notice. For nonpayment of rent, for example, you must serve the tenant with a 5-Day Notice to Pay or Quit. This notice informs the tenant that they have 5 days to pay rent or move out. If they don’t abide by this notice, you can then file an eviction lawsuit against them in court.
Whether you're an Arizona landlord or tenant, understanding the landlord-tenant law is crucial.
If you want expert help, contact SGI Property Management Phoenix today! We'll be happy to start assisting you with all your property management needs.
Disclaimer: This information is not a substitute for professional legal advice. Laws change and this blog might not be updated at the time of your reading. If you have questions or need further assistance, please get in touch with a qualified attorney or an experienced property management company.