Can a landlord have people live in a house without a dwelling permit, and force the tenants to pay all utilities?

Asked over 2 years ago - Ypsilanti, MI

In the lease it says tenants must pay all utility bills, electricity, gas, cable/internet and water. I am asking about the dwelling permit to see if i is legal or not to have tenants live in a house without one. There are many visible violation of the health code such as; water damage from pipes in the ceiling not caused by the tenants, mold around and near the damage, faulty window locks, non-air tight windows and doors allowing drafts and many other things. Should we have a inspector come through to look at this? Is there a way to find out if a house has a dwelling permit or not?

Attorney answers (2)

  1. David B. Fordyce

    Contributor Level 8


    Lawyer agrees

    Best Answer
    chosen by asker

    Answered . If you are in the City of Ypsilanti, the Housing Bureau is in charge of ensuring that rental housing is up to code. Also, each rental unit must be inspected periodically, and each rental unit must have a valid and current certificate of occupancy (I think this is what you may mean when you say dwelling permit). Contact the housing bureau, they can tell you whether there is a valid certificate on file, when the place was last inspected, and what you need to do to file a complaint for the conditions you describe. For more details, see the link I provided.

    No attorney-client relationship is formed by the act of attorney providing this answer. This answer is provided... more
  2. James T. Weiner

    Contributor Level 15


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . I am fairly sure that Ypsilanti requires a license or permit for the landlord to rent a residental dwelling ... this type of license typically requires an inspection periordically ... every two years or when the occupancy changes ..

    Check with the local township authorities.

    As for utilities.. if a tenant agrees to pay them they are liable.

    If I can be of additional assistance please feel free to email me at or call me at 248-901-... more

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