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Stay Compliant: 5 Must-Know Oregon Landlord and Tenant Laws for a Smooth Rental Experience

Uptown Properties - Wednesday, May 31, 2023
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Stay Compliant: 5 Must-Know Oregon Landlord and Tenant Laws for a Smooth Rental Experience

Renting a property in Portland, Oregon can be an exciting and rewarding experience. To ensure a smooth and enjoyable journey, landlords and tenants must be aware of the laws governing their rights and responsibilities. Understanding these laws will ensure a good landlord-tenant relationship and help avoid any legal hassles. In this blog post, we'll highlight five critical laws in Oregon that every landlord and tenant should keep in mind.

  • Renter Relocation Assistance: 

In Portland, Oregon, tenants are protected by laws that provide relocation assistance in specific situations. If landlords issue a no-cause eviction or increase the rent by more than 10% within a year, they must offer relocation assistance to the affected tenants. However, landlords have the option to apply for an exemption before renting their property. To ensure transparency, tenants must receive a written notice at least 90 days before the effective date of any rent increase or termination of the rental agreement. This notice should include important information such as a description of their rights and obligations and the specific amount of Relocation Assistance they are eligible to receive. The amount of relocation assistance fees varies depending on the size of the rental unit. These relocation assistance fees are designed to provide financial support to tenants facing displacement, ensuring a smoother transition during the relocation process. It is crucial to thoroughly research and understand this law before deciding to rent out your property. Prospective tenants should take the time to educate themselves about their rights and protections under this legislation. 

  • 24-Hour Notice for Entry:

Privacy is essential, even when you're renting. Oregon law emphasizes this by requiring landlords to give tenants a heads-up before entering their rental unit—except in emergencies, of course. They must provide a written notice at least 24 hours in advance, stating the purpose and approximate time of entry. This is important for both landlords and tenants to know. Landlords have the right to access the premises but must provide prior notice before entering a tenant's unit. Every tenant needs to enjoy their rented property without disturbance, ensuring their right to quiet enjoyment.

  • Habitability and Repairs:

Nobody wants to live in a property with plumbing issues or faulty electrical systems, right? That's why Oregon landlords have a legal duty to maintain their rental properties in a habitable condition. This means ensuring that essential services like plumbing, heating, and electricity are in working order. Should repairs be necessary, tenants are responsible for notifying their landlords in writing. And remember, if repairs aren't addressed within a reasonable timeframe, tenants may have options like rent reductions or lease termination. When employing a property management company you can feel reassured that your property will always stay in good condition and all habitability issues will be addressed promptly.

  • Fair Housing/Discrimination Laws:

Oregon stands strong against housing discrimination. It's a place where everyone deserves fair treatment and equal opportunities. Landlords mustn't discriminate based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, disability, familial status, or source of income. From advertising to screening and lease terms, these anti-discrimination laws ensure a level playing field for all. Let's celebrate diversity and inclusivity! A reputable property management company, such as Uptown Properties, can assist in preventing any violations of discrimination laws when marketing your property.

  • ESA and Service Animals: 

In Portland, Oregon, rental property regulations embrace inclusivity and the rights of individuals with disabilities. Thanks to the federal Fair Housing Act (FHA), both service animals and emotional support animals (ESA) are welcomed in most housing accommodations, ensuring equal opportunities for everyone. There are a few exceptions to allowing emotional support animals, but they mostly apply to specific housing types, like small owner-occupied buildings or privately sold single-family houses. For those who truly need the companionship and support of their furry friends, the FHA safeguards their rights. Whether it's an ESA providing emotional relief or a service animal performing crucial tasks, individuals with disabilities are protected. Landlords are even prohibited from charging additional fees for these wonderful companions, except in cases where any damages might occur (let's hope not!). So, if you're worried about a "no pets" policy in your lease, fear not! Your emotional support animal or service dog can still bring joy and comfort to your home. In some instances, your landlord may request documentation to ensure everything is in order, but for those whose disabilities are readily apparent, this shouldn't be a concern. Let's celebrate the inclusivity and understanding of Portland's rental regulations, promoting harmony and happiness in our homes!

Becoming familiar with these rental laws is a crucial step in being a responsible and informed landlord. Having a solid understanding of these laws equips you with the necessary knowledge to navigate various situations that may arise during your rental journey. By staying up to date with local ordinances and regulations, you can ensure compliance and confidently address any issues that may come your way. However, it's essential to acknowledge that rental laws can be complex and subject to change, so seeking guidance from a legal expert is always advisable. Consulting with professionals will provide you with personalized advice and help you navigate the intricacies of rental laws in your specific jurisdiction. Remember, being well-informed is key to maintaining a successful and lawful landlord-tenant relationship.