My tenant had to evacuate the 2800 sq ft home due to fire here in Colorado Springs. If not specifically mentioned in the contract, who should generally pay for the tenant's temporary housing? If that my insurance company? If house is uninhabitable, is rental contract void?
Hi,My name is XXXXX XXXXX X'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear that this happened.We have recently implemented a new payment and feedback system. Please be aware that you are rating my courtesy and service as a professional, and not whether the answer supports your legal position. If you have any questions at all, or there is anything I can clarify for you, please bypass the rating system and click “Continue the Conversation” or "Reply". Choosing either of the lowest two options reflects poorly on me (and not the law), so please reply to me if there is anything I can do to help before choosing those options. I appreciate your patience while we work out the kinks.If the premises just need some repairs, and the tenant can temporarily live elsewhere for a couple of weeks, the tenant is responsible for paying rent, and the landlord is responsible for giving them a place to stay until the place is fixed. This is because the lease guarantees that the landlord will give the tenant a place to live. The parties are free to negotiate for something else - for example, if the tenants have family or friends they can stay with, they might prefer a rent abatement to staying in a hotel. If the premises are completely destroyed by fire and cannot be lived in at all, then the lease is canceled due to impossibility - a landlord cannot allow a person to live in a home that does not exist. The landlord must return any prepaid rent or security deposit. In most cases where a property is going to need serious repairs for an extended period of time (say, several months), the lease can be declared void for impossibility. Please remember to rate my response before signing out, as this is the only way that I get credit for the time I spend helping you. I hope that you are satisfied - if not, please click "reply" so that we may continue the conversation.
Thanks. Can you also speak to the fact that the tenant was ordered to evacuate for the time being? Am I, or my insurance, obligated to pay for hotel stay given that we don't know the status of the house. I want to be fair, but would like to know the reasonable legal obligation. If the house is beyond repair, perhaps I owe them for rent already paid beginning, say, yesterday.Thanks,Bill
Forced evacuation muddies the waters, because you don't know if they have a place to live. If the house is beyond repair, you unfortunately do have to repay them for pro-rated rent for a portion of June. But you don't have to both refund the rent AND put them in a hotel, so if you're paying for accommodations, that will affect what you have to return to them. I imagine there's no way at the moment to find out just how bad it is. Considering the general law that the landlord has to put the tenant up where the tenant cannot access the property, I suspect that you'd have to give them money for reasonable accommodation. You don't have to put them in the Hilton, though. You can look for a place that has weekly rates. And, you may want to ask them about it, because if they have a place to stay, they may prefer just getting a couple of days back on the rent (or, say, a couple hundred dollars for their trouble). Hopefully, your insurance will cover the cost of putting them up somewhere. It's tricky, since you have no way of knowing whether they'll be able to reenter the house at this point.
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