If you own rental property in Dallas, you have probably received a letter from the city of Dallas recently requiring you to register your home for rent. While this not something that is uncommon nationwide, it is new to the city of Dallas. We’re talking about what this means and how you should respond. If you read the letter, you might think they seem a little aggressive with it. But, once everything is caught up and in place, you shouldn’t feel like it’s too much of an imposition.
Accountability and Habitability for Rental Homes
With this program, there are certain requirements that your rental properties need to meet. These are not uncommon things; in fact they’re mostly common sense, and you’re probably already doing them. As a landlord, you want to provide a safe home to your tenants, so why wouldn’t you take care of these things?
On the city’s website, there’s a two-page checklist for you to review and use as a guideline to prepare your property. To register your property as a rental home, you’ll need to meet with an inspector. When you do have the inspector come to your home, you’ll have a clear and straightforward way of knowing whether you passed. Many of the items on this checklist are things you would handle on your own; just to keep your property well-maintained.
For example, you have to make sure there are no water leaks or faulty appliances. Your home cannot have a roof that’s leaking. Things of that nature will be inspected because the city of Dallas just wants to make sure you are held accountable for a safe and habitable rental property. It keeps the community protected and your tenants safe.
Crime Prevention Lease Addendum
City requirements now include that you insert a crime prevention lease addendum into any lease agreement for your single-family rental homes. This is actually kind of nice because it gives us an extra teeth when we need to evict a tenant for criminal behavior.
With this new rule, we are not only permitted to evict a tenant, but required to evict a tenant if any of these things are happening at the property:
- Aggravated assault
- Criminal gang activity
- Discharge of firearms
- Manufacture, misuse, or selling of drugs
- Manufacture or sale of alcoholic beverages
If you look at that list of activity, you can probably agree that tenants engaging in that type of behavior are not the type of tenants you want in your home anyway. With this requirement, the city of Dallas is empowering landlords and property managers to remove tenants who putting your property and other people at risk.
The paperwork required to register your rental home can be a little bit daunting, but you don’t have to face it alone. Our office is very well-versed in these laws and the things that Dallas requires when it comes to registering rental properties.
We would love to help you if you have a need, so please contact us at McCaw Property Management.