Landlord/Tenant

We assist both landlords and tenants with the drafting, review and negotiation of residential and commercial leases and can advise and assist either party in the unfortunate event of an eviction or security deposit dispute.

Lease

Having a clear contractual arrangement between the landlord and tenant is the best way to ensure a successful and long term relationship.A� The lease should clearly and unambiguously set out all the rights and responsibilities of each party. Before you sign a lease, consider items such as:

  • Length of time you want to lease the property?
  • Do you want to include an option to extend? Do you want to include an early termination penalty?
  • The costs you will be responsible for (maintenance, taxes, insurance, utilities, etc.)
  • What happens in the event the property is damaged or destroyed?
  • Will there be restrictions on pets, number of occupants or use (e.g. prohibition of home for business use)?
  • Will the landlord be able to recover attorney fees from a tenant being evicted?

Eviction

Even under the best lease, sometimes the terms of the agreement are simply broken.A� It is important to understand when such a breach gives appropriate grounds for eviction.A� In recent years, some Colorado courts, especially in Denver and Jefferson counties, have granted leniency for tenants when the lease violations are minor.A� So it is important to take the time to review your lease and the status of the landlord-tenant relationship fully before pursuing an eviction.

In the unfortunate event of an eviction, we can review the eviction process with you; prepare and serve all necessary eviction paperwork and represent you in court throughout the eviction period. The eviction process typically takes two to three weeks from the date you first notify the tenant until the day the sheriff appears at the property to help the landlord move the tenant out.

Security Deposit Disputes

Did you know a security deposit is the tenant's property?

  • Tenants have the right to their security deposit;
  • Landlords must account for a security deposit that is not returned;
  • A security deposit must be returned within 30 days (60 days if your lease allows it); and,
  • Landlords can face serious consequences if they mishandle the security deposit.

In Colorado, a security deposit is always considered the property of the tenant and the landlord holding such deposit has taken a quasi-fiduciary responsibility to hold and manage those specific funds.A� At the end of any tenancy, whether the lease term was fulfilled or there was an early vacancy, the landlord must account for the security deposit to the tenant.A� If the landlord determines that it is necessary to withhold some or all of the funds of the security deposit, then the landlord must deliver a written accounting detailing how and why the funds are being withheld.A� This accounting needs to be delivered to the tenant's last known address within 30 days (a lease can specifically allow a landlord up to 60 days) and the remaining security deposit should be included with the accounting.A� If the landlord determines that no funds shall be withheld, then the entire deposit must be returned within the 30 days (60 days if allowed by lease).A� Failure to return the deposit or provide an accounting can leave the landlord liable to the tenant for the full deposit with the possibility of becoming liable for three times the amount of the deposit if it is determined that withholding the funds was done willfully and wrongfully.

Learn more about your rights and responsibilities in a lease arrangement. Call our office at (720) 297-0976.