Tenant and Landlord Information
The responsibilities of being a landlord and a tenant are governed by the State and by local ordinances. The Minnesota Attorney General’s Office publishes a handbook titled “Landlords and Tenants: Rights and Responsibilities,” that outlines the expectations spelled out by the State Statutes. The handbook is available at no cost and can be obtained by calling the Minnesota State Attorney General’s Office at (651) 296-3353 or 1 (800) 657-3787 (TTD 1-800-366-4812) or by visiting www.ag.state.mn.us.
Tenants have an obligation to help keep a rental property in compliance with community standards, the owner is also liable for any violations. It is ultimately the landlord’s responsibility to ensure safe and sanitary living conditions within the rental property. Both landlords and tenants are responsible for the prevention of insect and rodent infestation. All extermination must be completed by a licensed contractor.
Conduct on Rental Property
The landlord is responsible for the overall conduct of their tenants. Landlords are notified of complaints of loud parties or disorderly conduct that result in police action. Landlords are expected to manage their tenants when these events occur. Subsequent problems may result in the rental license being suspended or a lower license category/designation. For more information see City Code 12-911.
Attorney General’s Office
Properties with three or more units that are sold to a new owner will be required to provide protection for tenants. The purpose of the Tenant Protection Ordinance is to essentially freeze the terms of the existing lease for a 90 day period of time, allowing tenants time to relocate should they need to.
The ordinance requires a new owner of a property with three or more units, and with rents which are considered affordable, to pay relocation benefits to tenants if the new owner increases rent, re-screens existing residents resulting in tenants relocating from the property, implements non-renewals without cause within 3 months after the purchase, or materially changes the terms of the lease resulting in the tenant relocating from the property. The ordinance would require new buyers to notify tenants within 30 days if substantive changes to the lease are forthcoming, giving tenants time to relocate if necessary.
The ordinance defines "Cause" as the renter violating a provision of the City's rental housing provisions, nonpayment of rent, malicious destruction of property, or disturbing the peace. This means that a new landlord would not be able to non-renew a lease except for these reasons during the tenant protection period. A landlord would still be able to evict a tenant through the typical legal process.