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Tenants Duties Owed to Landlord

In Ohio, a tenant has duties owed to the landlord. They are statutory, common law, and duties imposed via the lease contract.

A Tenant’s Statutory Duties are:

  1. Duty to maintain the premises in safe and sanitary condition,

  2. Duty to dispose of garbage in a safe and sanitary manner,

  3. Duty to keep plumbing fixtures clean,

  4. Duty to use and operate all electric and plumbing fixtures properly,

  5. Duty to comply with applicable housing, health, and safety codes,

  6. Duty to refrain from destroying, defacing, damaging, or removing any fixture, appliance, or other part of the premises,

  7. Duty to maintain appliances supplied by the landlord,

  8. Duty to preserve other tenants’ peaceful enjoyment of the premises,

  9. Duty not to violate state law provisions involving drug offenses and controlled substances, and

  10. Duty to allow Landlord reasonable access to the premises.

Tenant’s Common Law Duties

  1. Duty to pay rent,

  2. Duty to make repairs,

  3. Duty to surrender possession of the leased premises, and

  4. Duty not to commit waste.

The Landlord’s remedies when one of these duties is breached include:

  1. Recover actual damages resulting from the violation,

  2. Recover reasonable attorney fees (note: I have never seen attorney fees awarded to a landlord, so although it is listed as a remedy, in practice, it is not an option,)

  3. Elect to terminate the lease/rental agreement (proper notice MUST be provided to the tenant,)

  4. Maintain an action for Forcible Entry and Detainer ( Eviction,) or

  5. Maintain an action for injunctive relief to compel access to the premises.

If you believe a tenant has violated one of these duties, you should consult an Attorney to determine the best course of action.

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