Sep 24, 2014

Utilities and the Residential Lease Agreement

Does your Arizona residential lease agreement require the landlord to pay the utilities? If you're a landlord and responsible for your tenant's utilities you need to listen up.

Section 33-1364(B) of the Arizona Residential Landlord and Tenant Act states: "A landlord shall provide all utilities and services specified in the lease agreement."

Section 33-1364(A) states in part: "If contrary to the rental agreement...the landlord deliberately or negligently fails to supply running water, gas or electrical service, or both if applicable, and reasonable amounts of hot water or heat, air-conditioning or cooling...the tenant may give reasonable notice to the landlord and do one of the following:

  • Obtain the utilities and then deduct their actual cost from the rent.
  • (If applicable) Pay the landlord's delinquent utility bill and deduct from rent the actual cost of the payment the tenant made to restore utility services.
  • Obtain reasonable substitute housing during the period of the landlord's noncompliance, in which case the tenant is excused from paying rent for the period of the landlord's noncompliance.
Section 33-1364(D) states in part: "If a landlord is in violation of...this section, the tenant may recover damages, costs and reasonable attorneys fees and obtain injunctive relief."

Additionally, you cannot deliberately cut off a tenants utilities because they are delinquent on rent and you're mad. The utilities cannot be shut off until you have properly evicted them. Shutting off their utilities while they are still occupying the property is considered an act of retaliation.

What does all of this mean to you as an Arizona landlord? If the lease agreement says you're to pay the utilities then make sure it happens.

Sep 17, 2014

Registering Your Rental Property with the County Assessor

Did you know that if you are a landlord in Arizona that you must register the property with the county assessor? Yes, that's right. Per the Arizona Residential Landlord and Tenant Act you must register your rental property of face serious consequences.

Section 33-1902(A) of the Arizona Landlord Tenant Act states in part: "An owner of residential rental property shall maintain with the assessor in the county where the property is located information required by this section...The following information shall be maintained."
  1. The name, address and telephone number of the property owner.
  2. If the property is owned by a corporation, limited liability company, partnership, limited partnership, trust or real estate investment trust, the name, address and telephone number.
  3. the street address and parcel number of the property.
  4. The year the building was built.
Consequences of Not Registering Your Property with the County Assessor

Section 33-1902(C) states in part, that if the owner has not filed the information required by this section with the county assessor and the residential rental property is occupied by a tenant the tenant may choose to terminate the tenancy. First, the tenant must deliver a 10 day notice to the landlord requesting compliance with this section. If the owner does not comply with this section within 10 days after receipt of the notice, the tenant may terminate the rental agreement and the landlord shall return all prepaid rent and security deposit to the tenant.

Additionally, a city can impose steep civil penalties against any residential landlord not in compliance with the section. Section 33-1902(G) states in part that "if a residential rental property owner fails to register with the county assessor as prescribed by this section, the city or town may impose a civil penalty in the amount of $150 PER DAY for each day of violation after the date of" notice.

With such serious penalties for not recording your Arizona rental property with the county assessor it's just not worth the risk of not complying with the law. If you would like our help in properly registering your Arizona rental property with the county assessor call us anytime at 480-246-8033.

Sep 8, 2014

Why You Should Thoroughly Screen Your Tenants: An Arizona Nightmare

We recently assisted some clients with an eviction, and when the tenant vacated the property, much to their horror, THIS is what they found.


the freezer

the bathtub

a closet

If you have "problem tenants," don't wait until it's too late - let us help you get them out as fast as legally possible.