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What can landlords do if a tenant ignores the rental agreement?

On Behalf of | Aug 11, 2022 | Real Estate

In Kentucky, the relationship between people who are renting a home or an apartment and the owner of the property can be complex. If both sides adhere to the law, there should be no cause for discord. However, disagreements happen and can spark problems for all involved.

This is often viewed from the perspective of the renter, implying that landlords are automatically wrong if challenges crop up. In truth, the landlord could be perfectly justified in trying to terminate the rental agreement. To be protected, landlords should be aware of the law for terminating an agreement and follow it to deal with these issues.

Understanding the basics to terminate a rental agreement

If landlords have made certain that the property is adequately maintained, repairs are done, the utilities are up to standard and it is safe, then the tenant must also follow the law and the tenets of the rental agreement. Failure to do so may give the landlord the right to terminate it and evict the renter.

“Material noncompliance” essentially means breaching the contract. While landlords might be accused of failing to live up to the rental contract, tenants could also be accused of material noncompliance. If, for example, the tenant is disturbing the peace and continues to do so after being told to stop, it could violate the agreement. Criminal activity is another example of a violation.

The landlord can subsequently inform the tenant in writing of the acts that violate the agreement and that the agreement will terminate in 14 days from its receipt. The breach must be addressed within 15 days to avoid termination. The agreement will remain intact if the tenant does what is asked. If it happens again within six months, the landlord has 14 days to terminate the agreement.

When rent is unpaid and it is not paid within seven days of the landlord giving written notice, the rent must be paid within that timeframe or the agreement can be terminated. Landlords can also seek to recover damages if the tenant does not comply with the agreement. If it is done willfully, the landlord can also try to recover actual damages and legal fees.

Landlords need professional guidance in disputes with tenants

Landlords who try to do right by their tenants and follow the agreement have recourse when tenants are not following their end of the contract. Consulting with experienced professionals who understand real estate law can be helpful to find a viable solution.