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and deduct would not be an appropriate remedsince a tenant cannot athorize repairs on the

common areas of the apartment. If you are livin in a locality with a housing code, one option

would be to complain to the buil ing inspector or code enforcement officials at your city hall or

county courthouse.

A tenant of mine changed the locks on the unit without my permission and will not give me a set of keys. The locks were not broken. What can I do to force the tenant to give me the keys?

Unless the lease prohibits the tenant fro changing the locks without permission, the

tenant is permitted to do so. Unless the lease states that the tenant must give the landlord a key,

the tenant is not obligated to doso. When the tenant vacates te premises, the tenant either has

to turn over the new keys or restore the lock t its original condition a d return the appropriate

keys. If the tenant neither t rns over the keys nor restores t e lock, the landlord may deduct the

cost of replacing the lock from the security dep sit and notify the tenant that this deduction will

be made.

One of my tenants wallpapered a bathroom and did a very poor job. The tenant did not ask my permission. Can a tenant make changes to rental property without the landlord's permission? What remedy do I have?

As a general rule, a ten ist prohibited from substantiallyaltering leased premises

without

the

landlord's

consent.

A

tenant

may

make

minor

alterations

to

the

premises.

Determining what may be a minor alteration is often difficult. It is best for a tenant to get written

approval from the landlord before atering the rental property. A tenant is required to return the

premises in the same condition as when received,subject to normal wear and tear. If the tenant

fails to return rental property in such condition, the measure of damages is the reasonable cost of

restoring

the

premises

to

t reioriginal

condition.

In

thecircumstances,

if

the

lease

so

provides, the landlord could retainas much of the security depositas is necessary to return the

unit to its original state. If the security deposit does not cover the full amount of the repair cost,

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