Living in Jersey can be a great experience. Moving here is an adventure for many people. Most decide to move to Jersey for its small-town feel and great living conditions. Many even choose it over NYC for its affordability. At the same time, most prefer to work and travel to the City while enjoying the quiet and peaceful living atmosphere of New Jersey. But moving to Jersey is not easy. It may require you to lease an apartment and be a tenant for some time. So, before you get the opportunity to buy your own property you should learn about your tenant rights.
Knowing your rights
Every move to NJ is a new experience. People tend to flock to the garden state for every part of the country. Many prepare for this move for a long time before doing it especially if they are moving long-distance. With so many recourses during the preparation of the move, you can find all you need to know about the process online. However, many are forced to rent a property for a while and need to get to know the NJ legislations about renting.
Many of the tenants tend to experience certain problems, discomfort, and uncertainty while renting a property. This issue usually becomes most obvious if you get into a dispute with the landlord. Of course, you can always settle your disputes trough court but you should know and exercise your rights as a tenant long before that. Luckily, new Jersey has a proper pallet of recourses to protect tenants. They aim at preventing disputes as well as to help you overcome and defuse them.
Jersey has a set of legislations made for these purposes. The Fair Housing Act lays out a simple obligation for landlords. All tenants must receive an up to date booklet informing them of their rights and obligations from the landlord. In this way, tenants are very well informed about their rights. That makes them capable to circumvent some common problems renters face. This gives them insight into common renting issues and how to resolve them before resorting to court.
New Jersey also has legislation that provides even wider protection than the Federal law. This legislation prohibits any form of discrimination in providing leasing. The legislation prohibits discrimination based on race, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, nationality, sex, gender identity or expression, disability, affectional or sexual orientation, source of lawful income or rent, familial status, or marital, domestic partnership, or civil union status.
Tenant rights regulation
In this way, the Garden state protects Civil rights and provides fair housing for all. This is one of the reasons why people are moving to Jersey and why All Season Movers and others are having their hands full. In addition, this legislation also regulates:
- Security deposits and
- Rent control
Eviction is only possible in certain situations. The eviction process can be started only if the tenant does not pay rent, violates the lease agreement, commits an illegal act on-premises, does not vacate the premises, disturbs other tenants, destroys or causes damage to the property. Statistics show that the leading cause of eviction is the failure to pay rent by the tenant. However, tenant protection is still in effect in these circumstances. The landlord is obligated to issue a notice to cease. Only after a month from the notice, the process of eviction can be started.
The tenant can also stop the eviction process by paying rent to the fullest by lockout day. However new changes have prolonged this period. This period now is three days after the lockout day. This means that the landlord must accept the payment and cease the eviction process if the tenant pays within this timeframe.
NJ legislation also stipulates that every tenant has the right to live in habitable conditions. The legislation also stipulates the tenant’s obligation to preserve the property of the landlord. In short this mins that the landlord must provide livable conditions to his tenants. He also must preserve and maintain these conditions. This in short means to provide for continual normal use of the facility by repairing damages that are a result of normal use and wear. Failure to provide normal habitable conditions is the second cause of rent-related disputes in NJ.
In this case, the tenant has the right to withhold payment if the landlord fails to maintain the property. The tenant must provide unpaid rent to the court. In these cases, the landlord may start the eviction process that can be stopped by the Marini hearing. During this hearing, the court will review the issue. The sentence can be to make the landlord complete the repair or to make the tenant complete the repair and deduct it from the rent cost.
New Jersey strictly regulates security deposits there are strict rules in place that landlords must follow regarding deposits. The security deposit must not be more than one and half months rent and an additional deposit must not be more than 10% of the existing deposit. The landlord must keep the deposit on a separate account. This deposit can be invested in market funds that are insured.
The landlord must inform the tenant of the bank account of the deposit or the investment of the deposit and any interest. Annually the landlord must inform the tenant of any interest earned from the deposit and pay it to the tenant in cash. Alternatively the tenant can decide to use this interest to pay the rent. In addition to this in cases of the end of the lease, the landlord must return the deposit and the interest rate to the tenant within 30 days.
The state of New Jersey does not provide rent control or has any legislation to that effect. However, most of the NJ municipalities have regulations to put rent under control. Although the state does not regulate rent any tenant has the right to check for the local legislation and to assess whether the landlord is following the local rules and obligations. In this way, a tenant can protect his own right and report a suspected violation.
So, New Jersey has strict regulations about tenant rights. Tenants in NJ are secure and sure that the law protects them and their interests. There are issues, but they are easy to settle and keep under control. Besides this short introduction get help from additional resources and find additional legal support if needed.