The short answer is yes, you can require that they not smoke in or on the property.
Visit the Pa attorney general's web page and get a copy of the PA Landlord Tenant Act so you know your duties, rights and obligations under PA law.
Fran and Mark Redding
Prudential Fox & Roach, Realtors
1010 stony hill Road
Yardley, PA 19067
215-208-7169 Cell... more
The Bank who has taken possession of the property has to honor your lease that is in effect until the end of the lease date. They will hire an Assest Management company or Broker to manage the property and collect the rent until the said lease has reached its end date. They may contact you and also offer you what is typically called "cash for key's" to evacuate the property sooner, but you do as a renter with an enforceable lease have the right to stay into the property.... more
As a landlord, I say that the tenant pays for the cleaning. After all, who dirtied the carpet. Even its its not dirty by your standards, if you had a baby, would you let him crawl on the floor, especially if you're the new tenant? I doubt it. So i don't agree with with Joan S. If the landlord wants you to have it cleaned, you can be sure that he wants it cleaned for everybody who moves in. Makes sense to me.... more
Check your lease. There may be a provision that requires the tenant pay to have the locks changed upon vacating. If there is no term relating to this then the tenant is not permitted to change locks when moving in, while residing there or upon vacating without permission from the owner or manager. You may want to consider speaking with a good real estate attorney before taking legal action. Also consider if the ends justifies the means (will it cost more then you may get if you win).
Good luck.... more
Start by talking to them and get a feel for their processes. Look at their management agreement with owners and their rental agreement with tenants. A good manager starts by covering their bases. Then talk to some of their tenants and owners to see what they think. Visit their properties and see how they care for them. Here are some important points to investigate:
1. How do they advertise?
2. How do the screen applicants and select the right one?
3. What do they do when rent is late? Check on them! They might talk a good game, but do they really enforce the rules?
4. What do they charge for fees and what do they do for their money? Are there hidden fees?
5. What is the cancellation policy if you are unsatisfied with their services?
There is much more to this, but this can get you started. DO NOT interview just one manager! Visit with at least three (if there are that many available) and put them all through the wringer. You will learn a lot and one of them will likely stand apart from the others.... more
I pay the water/sewer/trash for my tenant. The reason I ensure I pay water/sewer is because if it's not paid they can put a lien on the house. Also I pay the trash because it's one less bill for the tenant (convenience for them to only have gas/electric/cable-phone. There is no requirement to pay any utilities that are not in the lease; I don't know about section 8 rules.... more
Request extra copy of the lease to review before signing. Read over it carefully and note anything within the lease you may have a question or concern about. Ensure you have plenty of time for this so you do not feel rushed or pressured into signing lease the same day you are looking at the property.... more
There are many clauses that can be added to your rent to own agreement to make it fairly fail safe for you. First and foremost, the property doesn't change hands unless the buyer / renter meets all criteria. This can mean very detailed criteria such as being late on the rent a certain number of times. As long as your careful about who is moving in and are reasonably sure they will take care of the place, a rent to own or land contract is not a bad idea if you are financially in a position to do it. The downside is that it takes it off the market and you are dependant on the buyer to fulfill his side of the agreement or it will be a waste of time in getting it sold.... more
I am a property manager in PA and I collect first months rent and a sec dep equal to 1 months rent from ALL tenants. It is standard practice in my state. In many other states it is standard practice to collect 1st months rent, last months rent AND a security deposit.... more