Vision Real Estate Tenant Handbook
(NON-BYU APPROVED HOUSING)
We are pleased to have you as our tenant and we would like your experience with Vision Real Estate to be a pleasant one. Along with your rental agreement (lease), this handbook is a very useful tool. It contains useful information that will help to make your residency with us a satisfying one. This tenant handbook is designed to outline our responsibilities to you as well as your responsibilities to us, and the home. It is our profound belief that when you as a tenant understand not only our policies and procedures, but also the laws pertaining to rental housing in Utah, we will be able to better serve your needs.
To make your residency with us the best it can be, we recommend you abide by some simple rules:
- Pay your rent on time
- Keep the property clean, tidy and undamaged
- Keep to the terms of your tenancy agreement
- Respect your neighbors’ right to peace and quiet
*Please note that an emergency is considered something that is an immediate threat to a person’s health or the property. After hours emergencies are subject to additional charges, that you as a tenant, may be responsible for if the repair is not deemed an emergency.
If you have a question or concern about the property please call your manager directly at the number they provided in this booklet. If you have a question about payment, scheduling, or office information please call the office during regular business hours.
If you reach our voice mail system during the day, please leave a message. We check our voicemail regularly throughout the day. We are unable to return calls based off caller ID. If you do not leave a message we cannot call you back to resolve problems or answer questions. Also be sure to leave your property address and contact phone number so that we can call you back.
If you have a maintenance issue, please login to your account and turn in a maintenance request. If you are uncertain please call your manager.
This is the preferred method of communication to/from you. We send out notices, requests and general correspondence using this method of communication. (As per our lease agreement) If you change your email, please let us know immediately.
Please notify our office and/or your manager if you change your phone number or email address.
One of the main reasons that the “mail” doesn’t get to you is the timing in which you have notified the Post Office. Forms are available in hardcopy at the local post office or you can file online at https://moversguide.usps.com. PLEASE be aware of scams that are out there by third party providers. Use only the USPS site.
In most rentals certain utilities are your responsibility and some are included in your rental agreement. Be sure to pay close attention to your specific lease as to what utilities will need to be put in your name and which ones are included.
With the utilities that need to be in your name, make sure that at least one week prior to move in you have contacted the provider in order to put these in your name. (Including but not limited to gas, electricity, cable, water, phone, sewer, etc.) In some instances, the utility company may charge you a deposit.
Prior to moving in, you and your property manager will walk through the property. Be sure to notice the condition that everything is in. This walkthrough not only allows you to view the property but also shows you how it should look when you move out.
You will be given a move-in form to fill out. You will need to return this to us within 48 hours of moving in. Be sure to save a copy of your move-in inspection form so that you can refer back to it upon move out. You are responsible for all repairs beyond normal wear and tear. This means that if you crack a window during your tenancy, you are liable for any and all damage, including cost of repairs.
Vision Real Estate requires that all tenants carry personal renters insurance. The owner’s insurance generally covers only the rental property itself, and will not cover your belongings. Renters insurance will not only cover your belongings, but will also insure you against claims from third parties. Renters insurance is fairly cheap in Utah. Contact your insurance agent for specific pricing or ask your property manager for a recommendation.
When you first move-in, locate the breaker box, the GFI breakers and the breakers for the main appliances in your home.
Locate the emergency shutoff for the water and gas. The water main shut-off is usually located in the front yard near the sidewalk or road. Also locate the water shut offs for the home, hot water heater and for all sinks/toilets. Locating these items when you first move in may prevent/minimize damage later.
If you have any questions be sure to refer back to your lease. It includes a lot of information that will help with many of your questions. It discusses what is agreed on for yourself as well as our responsibilities. If you have any questions please contact your manager to discuss them.
Rent is due on the 1st of every month. You can pay rent in the office during regular business hours or online at www.visionutah.com.
Simply log in and click “make payments”. You may also set up automatic payments through this portal. Please be aware that if information is entered incorrectly and the payment does not go through that you will be liable for any fees incurred as well as late payment charges.
Due to the advent of technology, we are enabled to have a very simple late fee policy. Residents have until 11:59 p.m. on the 5th to pay rent or late fees will occur.
In most situations, rent is DUE on the first and there is a 5-day grace period before we will charge you a late fee. This means that at 12:01 a.m. on the 6th, you will be charged late fees. Your obligation under the lease is to pay rent ON or BEFORE the first, not before the 6th. If our office is closed on the 4th, 5th or even the 6th, the rent is still late, and you will be charged a late fee.
If the office is closed when you try to make a payment you can go online (www.visionutah.com) and pay your rent on time. There are very few instances where the late fee will be waived.
Upon move-in you will receive keys to the locks on your new home. You are responsible for keeping track of these keys, and all keys to the property are to be returned upon move-out.
If you lose or lock yourself out of your home during office hours there is a $25 dollar charge to make a copy of our back-up set of keys. After office hours (later then 5:00 PM during the weekday or on weekends), there is a minimum $80 dollar fee for an emergency maintenance response.
It is illegal for you to change the locks on a property without permission from Vision Real Estate. If you do not feel “safe” at the property, please call your manager and discuss your options.
Because the postal service is federally run, we CANNOT change the keys to your mailbox. If you lose a key or if it needs to be re-keyed please contact the post office directly, as we are not allowed to do this.
When you signed your lease there was a set of rules & regulations that you agreed to abide by. One of which is to allow everyone quiet enjoyment. This does not mean complete silence, but please be aware of those around you and the quiet hours of your property.
When you move in you are given a move-in inspection from your manager that you needed to return to them within 48 hours. This lets them know of any damages or repairs that may need to be taken care of.
At Vision Real Estate we strive to provide exceptional service to our tenants and our investors. Part of providing this service is to do regular inspections on our properties. This does not mean that we do not “trust” our tenants. This is an excellent time for verifying that all properties are in good working condition. And that there is not any small issues that can be cared for to avoid larger issues down the road.
We usually hold scheduled inspections every other month. We do want to try to work around your schedule, but just as with maintenance, sometimes that is not possible. We will give you a minimum of 24 hours notice when we are doing a regular inspection.
Every property varies on the type, space and area allowed for parking. Your manager should have explained where you are allowed to park as well as how many vehicles are allowed.
If you get a new car or need additional space, please contact your manager so that your car does not get towed for parking in the “wrong spot”. Only approved and operational vehicles in designated areas are allowed.
Please also let your guests know where they can park, so that additional cars do not inconvenience others.
Section 8 of your lease states that guests are not allowed to stay for over seven (7) days in any thirty (30) day period. You may be subject to a $25/day fee for overnight guests. Also remember that you are fully responsible for your guests and their behavior, and can be charged for damages they cause or even evicted.
It is our policy that tenants do not do repairs or alterations. If you do want to make a special request for renovation or repair to the property: Submit your request in writing before making any changes. Do not proceed with any work until you receive written authorization to do so.
If you experience an emergency situation, please follow the steps outlined below. As a note, if the problem occurs in the middle of the night it is very unlikely we will be able to dispatch a contractor to the property until the morning, so please try and contain the emergency as best as possible.
- The specific definition of a maintenance emergency is: an issue that is dangerous, hazardous, or if not addressed immediately could cause damage to the property or your personal well being (e.g., flooding, no heat in the winter, or gas leak).
- An emergency is not an annoying sound, air conditioning failure, appliance malfunction, drain stoppage and the like, while inconvenient, these are not considered emergencies and will be handled by our office on the following business day.
- If the situation is considered a maintenance emergency and occurs during normal business hours, please call our office, then follow-up with a work order request.
- If the situation occurs after business hours please call our main office line and listen for directions on how to reach our emergency extension. Remember to leave your name, phone number, address, and the type of emergency.
Pets are NOT allowed in BYU housing. Please speak with your manager regarding specifics if you feel that a medical exception is needed.
Who Is Responsible?
This is entirely dependent on when and how the mold developed. For example, if the mold developed due to a tenant’s negligence, the cost of removal of the mold may become your responsibility. If the mold developed just after the tenant’s moved in, then perhaps this has been an ongoing issue, and should therefore be the responsibility of the lessor. However, it is the responsibility of the tenant to notify the agency or property manager as soon as they discover the mold.
How to Prevent Mold/Mildew
- Use the fan when using the shower or laundry
- Allow plenty of sunlight to come into the property
- If condensation builds on the walls or ceiling, dry the area thoroughly.
- Allow ventilation throughout the property by opening a door or window (if weather permits)
- Leave internal doors open to allow for circulation
Smoke detectors are installed at all properties that Vision Real Estate manages. Please make sure to change out the batteries on a regular basis. This is your responsibility as a tenant; you will be charged maintenance fees if you call the maintenance department to change the battery for you. If your detector is not working please let us know ASAP so that we can remedy the situation.
Utah law does not require carbon monoxide detectors. We recommend that owners have them in their properties, but legally cannot require them. If you have one in your property, it is your responsibility to change out the batteries. If you do not have one, you can purchase “plug-in” detectors at a reasonable price at many stores.
If you would like to add a satellite dish, cable, etc. to your property please call us so that we can authorize the installation as well as explain where things can or cannot be mounted or installed.
If your property is in need of maintenance, and it is NOT an emergency please login to your account at www.visionutah.com. There are 2 tabs after login, one for payments the other for messages. Please click on the messages tab and click “contact us”. Fill out the form, letting us know what the issue is, and upload a picture if necessary. This will start the maintenance process. You may receive a phone call from your manager asking for more details, so please make sure that we have your current contact information.
As you become more settled in your new home it is important to manage routine maintenance items. Here are some examples of maintenance items you are responsible for:
- Replacement of light bulbs
- Cleaning or replacement of furnace filters (if applicable)
- Regular yard and lawn maintenance (if applicable)
- Replacement of batteries in smoke detectors and CO detectors
- Changing out the vacuum bag/filter
After you have turned in a maintenance request, you will be contacted by someone, either our maintenance department or a vendor on our behalf (depending on the issue) to schedule a time for repairs to be made. We always try to work with you in this regard, but sometimes schedules just don’t match up. Please understand that according to our lease agreement, you do not have to be present for us to enter and make needed repairs. We are an ethical company that works with licensed and insured vendors. You and your property are safe with us!
Sometimes maintenance is a simple fix, something that can be done with instruction from us, or by your manager. For larger items, or things that are more complex, we use a professional to make the repairs. We will keep you updated as to what is going on, or who is going to make these repairs.
As with any property, repairs need to be done. But the question always is, who has to pay for it. Damages and maintenance due to regular use, or normal wear and tear are the expense of the owner/property management company. This means, if the freezer compressor breaks, because the fridge is old, the owner will repair the fridge for you. On the other hand, repairs that need to be done because of “misuse” by the tenant are at the expense of the tenant. For example, if the tenant does not turn on the fan, or open the window to air out the bathroom after a shower and mold grows, the expense of cleaning up that mold is the tenant’s expense. Some common charges that tenants incur for repairs are:
- Clogged toilets
- Painting/patching walls from excessive holes
- Pests due to food on the floors, out in the cupboard, etc.
The breaker box location is different in every home. It is a good idea to locate it immediately upon renting the unit. If you cannot find your breaker box, contact your manager so they can explain to you where it is.
Often times you will have an outlet or section of the house quit working. If you have checked the breakers and do not find anything wrong you will want to reset any GFI’s that are in the house. GFI’s can be found at the center of outlets either in bathrooms or kitchens and usually have a red button on them.
When you move into a property we have tried to insure that it has been left pest free. On rare occasion something may slip past us. Please let us know within the first 2 weeks of living at the property if you experience any excessive pest problems. Keep in mind that no property is 100% pest free, spiders and bugs are a natural part of life.
After the first few weeks in a property if you have problems with pests it is usually caused by something within the home. To lessen your chances of pests we recommend the following:
- Clean the counters, sinks, etc. regularly. Crumbs only invite mice, ants, and other crawlers into your home.
- Empty your garbage’s daily if needed. Letting items sit for a week in the garbage is a welcome mat for pests.
- Sweep/vacuum often, daily if you can!
- Keep the window screens closed. Taking them off opens up your home to everything.
- Make sure that doors are closed and secure! Your home is very inviting to pests, don’t give them an open way in.
If you experience pests, try cleaning up the property first thing. Bug spray is an easy, cheap alternative for a few creepy crawlers. If you have an influx of pests, let us know immediately so that the problem can be remedied before it spreads.
Set the thermostat to an appropriate heat level for winter and cool level for summer. Note that you will be held liable for any damage incurred due to turning off the heat when leaving on vacation during the winter.
Here are some little reminders about the terms of your lease, as well as some general best practices for cold weather:
- Keep your thermostat at or above 65 degrees even if you’re gone. That will keep your home warm enough to avoid pipes freezing.
- Run hot water down your drains regularly. Especially those of you who live in older homes or above a parking garage, the drain lines can freeze.
- Make sure you do not have any garden hoses still connected to hose bibs. The freezing water backs up the line and can burst pipes.
- You can put plastic wrap on your windows to give you some additional insulation if you don’t have double pane windows already. Typically this is applied a few inches away from the window to create an air pocket. Google it. Obviously be cautious because we don’t want you to get dinged for damage to the paint due to tape or tacks on move out.
- If you feel a draft somewhere in your home, let us know so we can see if we can block it with insulation, weather stripping, or some other safe means.
- Expect a higher gas bill. Usually, if you experience a really high gas bill there isn’t a problem with the house, it is just REALLY cold.
Air conditioners are a wonderful thing, but there are a few things that you can do to keep your home nice and cool in the Utah heat.
- Running the A/C too cool can actually have the opposite effect than what you want. If you set the thermostat below 65, you run the risk of freezing the air conditioner and rendering it useless.
- When you are not home, turn the thermostat up a few degrees. There isn’t any reason to cool down the home when no one is there. It will save you money on energy costs.
Make sure to regularly vacuum and pick up your carpets. Damage beyond normal wear and tear can get expensive. Here are a few simple steps can keep your home looking great and decrease additional expenses to you.
- Use doormats to reduce the amount of dirt that is tracked into your home.
- Vacuum often. Vacuuming helps pick up dirt and debris before it sinks into the carpet.
- Clean up spots and spills immediately. If you spill something place an absorbent towel immediately over it and press down firmly to absorb what you can. Don’t scrub back and forth until after you have removed the access liquids. Once you have absorbed as much as you can, use a cleaner to clean the rest of it.
Be sure to wipe down your countertops and cabinets frequently. It is easier to do a quick wipe, than to have to spend hours scrubbing them down at the end of your lease.
- Clean up spills quickly. Letting certain things sit will stain the countertop surfaces.
- Please be sure not to place hot pans or trays on laminate countertops as they will burn through the surface and damage them beyond repair.
When running the dishwasher, take care not to allow silverware and cooking utensils to get caught in the bottom. Be sure to use automatic dishwashing detergent only. (Do not use regular dish soap.)
Dishwashers work best when they are cleaned out. If you have a garbage disposal, run hot water and the disposal for a few seconds prior to starting the dishwasher. Check the bottom of the dishwasher to see that no food or debris is clogging the drainage areas or touching the coils. As long as nothing is clogging the drains you can run it. You can also find dishwasher cleaners that clean out the dishwasher from your local grocery store.
Run a lot of water while using garbage disposal. Tenants will be responsible for the cost of repairing disposals, unless due to a defect in the equipment. A service call will be billed to the tenant if any foreign objects have jammed the unit.
ALWAYS run water while the disposal is operating to avoid damage to the unit. Let the water run long enough to grind all the material in the disposal. Then let the water run for 10-15 seconds after turning off the disposal. Learn to recognize the sound the machine makes when completely free of garbage.
Disposals are designed to grind up organic items only. The following items should not be put down the garbage disposal.
- Uncooked pasta & rice products
- Fats and greases
- Fibrous food waste (i.e. celery, banana or potato peels, and onions)
- Non-food waste items
- Large quantities of anything should not be put down the disposal.
If your garbage disposal does not work:
- Turn the wall switch off!
- Find the red reset button on the bottom or side of the disposal tank and press it.
- Check the inside of the unit for bottle caps, coins, silverware, dishcloths, sponges, etc. and remove them.
REMEMBER: Problems caused by tenants and their guests are the tenant’s responsibility.
Regular cleaning from the start prevents MAJOR headaches in the end!
- If something spills in the oven, it is easier to clean it while it is fresh than let it bake for months.
- Don’t leave pans unattended on the stove! An empty pan, that has boiled away the water, is a great way to burn down the place.
Tenants are responsible for replacing their own light bulbs. When replacing light bulbs in the appliances or residence, be sure not to exceed the recommended wattage. For all enclosed fixtures, you should use 60-watt bulbs, and for appliances such as your stove and refrigerator, a 40-watt bulb is recommended.
Any light bulbs that are missing or not working upon move-out will be charged to the tenant for replacement.
Thank heavens for indoor plumbing, but in order to keep it running good there are a few things that you need to do.
- Clean out the drains regularly. This means if you notice hair or other debris on the drain, throw it in the trash before it goes down.
- If the bath/shower drain is getting slow to drain, we recommend picking up a “Zip-it” from the home maintenance department at Wal-Mart. It is a simple plastic tool you stick down the drain to remove the clogs. It usually costs under $5, and is much less expensive to you than having a plumber come remove the clog (min. $65)
- Don’t flush large amounts of TP down the toilet. Feminine products should always be put in the garbage and NOT down the drain.
- If you notice a leak, report it early! Little leaks can turn into major problems if not reported and could cost you damages for failing to report it.
- Many homes and apartments have low-flow toilets. Low-flow toilets tend to clog or back up if too much paper, etc. is flushed. You may need to continue and hold down the handle when flushing to avoid clogs.
- Be prepared to plunge the toilet to clear clogs and avoid damage from over-flows.
An excellent drain cleaning/clearing solution recipe is 1-cup salt, 1-cup baking soda, and 1-cup vinegar, followed by 8 cups of boiling water. We recommend performing this treatment monthly to avoid build-up.
Refrigerators have coils and some have water filters. In order to keep your refrigerator running and in good order you will want to vacuum the coils periodically. If your refrigerator has an icemaker or water dispenser it will also have a water filter. They can usually be found on the inside of the door. Filters can be found at most part stores such as True Value, Lowes, Home Depot, etc. Icemakers can break easily and are expensive to fix. Make sure the waterline at the back of the refrigerator is not pinched and the filters are clean.
If your property has a yard it is sometimes your responsibility to care for it. It is lease specific, so you will want to make sure that you know, and understand what you agreed to care for in your lease. If you have questions please call your property manager so that you don’t incur unknown costs. Most commonly costs tenants incur are:
- Higher water bills from sprinklers. It is your responsibility to ensure that the lawn does not die in the hot Utah summers. Water regularly will help with this.
- Lawn mowing, most often in a single family home, it is your responsibility to mow the lawn. Vision Real Estate does not provide lawn mowers, and it is on the tenants to procure one on their own. Cities will fine for lawns that are too long, and that fine is at the cost of the tenants.
- Some people like to garden, others do not. Keeping your home beautiful is beneficial to everyone. If you do not want to care for flowers, then please make sure to keep the beds weeded and clean. Any plants that are perennial will need to be cared for.
- Care must be taken to ensure that shower curtains are inside the tub, and that shower doors are completely closed when taking a shower. Water on tile floors can seep through the grout and cause dry rot on the underlayment and discolor the vinyl. Water can also seep around the edges of linoleum and damage the flooring below. We recommend putting a mat, towel or rug on the floor to step on when exiting the tub or shower. Please be aware that the rubber-backed mats can discolor vinyl floors, and the tenant could be charged to replace the floor at move-out.
- Be sure plant saucers are kept under all potted plants. Water run-off will stain or damage most surfaces.
The safety of you and your guests is important to our company and many things can affect it. Here are some tips to follow:
- Window screens are not a safety device. DO NOT ALLOW UNATTENDED CHILDREN NEAR OPEN WINDOWS.
- Unplug all heat-producing appliances like toasters, irons, and coffee makers when not in use to prevent fire hazards.
- Never leave heating pads and electric blankets on indefinitely and turn them off when you leave the residence to prevent fire hazards.
- Never leave water running unattended in a plugged bathtub or when leaving the residence. If you have an upstairs bathroom and you see water in the ceiling below, particularly in the light fixture, report the leak immediately to our office.
- Do not operate electrical appliances while standing or sitting in water.
- If you have guests with small children, use child protector plugs when you are not using outlets.
- Do not overload extension cords with too many appliances.
- Place lamps on level surfaces and use the correct wattage.
- Avoid running extension cords over walkways, under rugs, or any other place that could cause tripping.
- Do not remove smoke alarms, particularly if they are beeping. Smoke alarms are for safety and removing them can endanger all residents and guests. Change the batteries if needed.
- Do not leave items on walkways and sidewalks.
- Replace outside light bulbs so you can utilize lights properly when it is dark. Report any exposed tree roots to our office.
- Keep a portable fire extinguisher in the kitchen and the garage; they are available in hardware supply stores.
- If you use a grill or BBQ, use common sense & never leave grills unattended. Do not set grills up against the house or on a balcony. You could start a fire.
When it comes to moving out make sure that you have given the proper notice to Vision Real Estate. You will be expected to clean the property prior to move out. This is a list of the required cleaning that you need to do in order to receive your full security deposit back.
- Deep Clean = means NO dirt, dust, or build-up on any If it is dirty, CLEAN IT! We check everything!
- Clean Effectively = when cleaning a room, start from top to bottom, leaving the floors to do last. This way you are not back tracking and cleaning areas twice.
- Plan Ahead = detailed deep cleaning takes a lot longer than anticipated. Appliances alone can take a couple hours each, if really dirty. Trying to clean everything the day you move will not result in a quality clean. Do as much as possible beforehand.
- All light bulbs are to be in working condition. Regular light bulbs in all fixtures, with appropriate vanity bulbs in the bathrooms. This includes outside lights. If you have vaulted ceilings and cannot reach the fixture, bulbs must be left for Maintenance to install.
- All light fixtures to be clean and free of dead bugs.
- All ceiling fans to be dusted.
- All blinds to be dusted, & cleaned if necessary.
- All windows clean and streak-free, and sills & window tracks cleaned.
- Maintenance closets to be swept and free of debris, dust, and cobwebs.
- Fresh air returns to be free of grime and dust.
- Ovens to be spotless with no baked on grease. Do not use an abrasive pad to remove baked on grease. Use a degreaser with a razor blade to scrape off stubborn spots.
- Pull out stove and clean sides of stove, behind & under stove. This includes cabinet sides and wall behind.
- Clean out stove drawer if applicable.
- Clean top of refrigerator, and behind & under refrigerator. Defrost if necessary.
- Burner pans to be shiny and free of baked on grease. Replace burner pans if grease does not come off.
- No hard water or accumulated grime around sink fixtures.
- Absolutely no rings or stains in toilets.
- Wipe out all cabinets, tops of cabinets & closet shelves.
- Wipe down all doors, front & back – including decorative parts of the door and knobs.
- Wipe all baseboards.
- Clean all light switches. No grime to be seen on the On/Off toggle or in any outlets. Use a toothbrush if necessary.
- Clean and dust behind washer & dryer, if applicable. This includes hoses & vents.
- If you are responsible for yard care, leave the yard mowed and trimmed.
- Vacuum all carpets including stairs and edges.
- Wood, tile, and vinyl floors must be mopped (with proper cleaning chemicals – avoid water on wood floors) and have no sticky spots on neither them, nor visible grime. Additional scrubbing may be necessary, especially around the edges and underneath the cabinets.
- Clean all counters and cabinet fronts, and sides if applicable.
- Wipe off handrails.
- If you have a garage, it must be swept and spills cleaned up, and garbage can cleaned out.
- Patios or balconies must be swept and railings wiped off.
- Underneath bottom door shelf & rubber seal
- Vent at bottom.
- Texture on handles.
- Edges of handles.
- Door hinge.
- Between doors.
- Top hinge & top of frig.
- Rubber seal around door
- Vent above microwaves & range hoods.
- Filter pops out & can be run through dishwasher.
- Grease splatters around lights & underside of hood.
- Around clock.
- Window edge.
- Inside & outside of drawer.
- Edges of handle & vent behind it.
- Food & utensils in bottom
- Detergent Build-up
- Dirt & food spills around edges.
- Underneath stove top
- Rims under drip pans
- Grime & hard water build-up on faucet, handle, sprayer
- Rim around edges of sinks & faucets, especially behind sink.
- Edges on doors & around handles.
- Corners & edges of drawers.
- Dust & grime build-up in edges
- Hinges behind the seat, especially under the plastic caps.
- Outside of bowl & around floor edge.
- Bolts at the bottom.
- Hinges & edges – especially underneath
Under Utah State law the security deposit, or the deposit accounting, needs to be sent within 30 days of move-out. Here at Vision Real Estate we always abide by state & federal laws. Usually we are able to assess any damages/charges before the 30 days are up, but on rare occasions it does take the full 30 days.
You will receive what is called a Security Deposit Disposition, which is a breakdown of all charges, repairs, rent or damages that the property needed when you left. It will include a check for the amount of your security deposit that is returned to you after these charges are taken out. Remember, the better the condition you leave the property, the better the likeliness is of receiving your entire deposit back.
If you do not agree with any of the disposition please call your manager to discuss it. We are always open to an open conversation about disputes. We can’t fix something, if you don’t tell us you are unhappy with it.
Disclaimer: Management has the final authority to determine how much of the deposit shall be refunded in accordance with the conditions set forth in the Rental Agreement.
According to Utah Law, an apartment must be fit to live in, that is, it must be habitable. Generally, habitable” means:
▪ Leak-Free walls, windows, doors, and ceilings;
▪ Plumbing in working condition;
▪ Gas, heating, and electricity in working order;
▪ Clean and sanitary buildings and grounds that are free from pests, garbage, and rodents;
▪ Adequate trash receptacles in good repair;
▪ Floors, stairways, and railings in good repair.
As residents you are required to take reasonable care of your rental and it’s common areas. You are responsible for damage you directly cause or is caused by anyone for whom you are responsible including your guests and your pets.
The Utah Legislature strengthened state landlord/tenant law by replacing most local ordinance with a standard statewide act. This spells out quite clearly the responsibilities of the owners, managers and tenants in Utah.
Every residential rental property in Utah must be maintained as a “habitable dwelling”, which means assuring the following:
- Working electrical system
- Hot water & Heat source
- Running water and operational plumbing (including sewer or septic system)
- A Securable Property (locks on doors and windows)
- If installed, maintain any A/C that is in at the time of rental in working order.
*Note – If these things become an issue, owner is to remedy within 3 days upon proper notice from renter.
In addition to making sure the building is habitable, owners must also:
- Maintain other appliances and facilities as contracted.
- Provide garbage receptacles
- Provide 24-hour notice to enter except as provided for in rental agreement.
An owner is not required to correct a condition caused by the tenant or their guests. Owners/Property Managers may also choose not to repair a habitability issue and can cancel lease with property notice.
Utah Law makes it very clear that renters must maintain the property and follow all rules. Some of the obligations of renters spelled out in Utah Law include:
- Be current on all payments required by rental agreement (renters do not have right to stay or use other remedies if not current on rent).
- Cooperate in maintaining rental unit, including allowing owner and agents to enter to conduct maintenance.
- Comply with board of health rules.
- Maintain premises in clean and sanitary condition and not unreasonably burden common areas.
- Properly dispose of all garbage.
- Use plumbing, sanitary and electrical fixtures as designed.
- Occupy rental as designed – not increase number of occupants above that specified in agreement without consent of owner.
- Comply with the rules of the rental agreement.
- Renters may not intentionally destroy or damage any part of rental unit, interfere with peaceful enjoyment of another renter or unreasonably deny access to the apartment to owner for purposes of maintaining premises.
*Note – For a renter to be able to use the below remedies, they must be paid in full on all obligations.
If a renter believes an owner is in breach of the Fit Premises act, they may give an owner a “notice of deficient condition” and in that notice MUST elect a remedy. The available remedies are:
- Cancellation of the lease and refund of deposit and any rent since service of the corrective notice (this is called the “rent abatement” remedy),
- Tenants may fix the problem themselves and deduct up to two months equivalent of rent (this is called “repair and deduct” remedy. Both of these remedies can ONLY be used, after following the specific process and timeframes
- A renter can sue for compliance.
Procedure for renter remedy the process is as follows:
- Notify owner/manager in writing and have the notice served on the owner in accordance with 78B-6-8053 or as provided in rental agreement.
- In the notice specify which remedy renter will seek if situation not remedied. The options are”
- Cancellation of the lease
- Fix it themselves and deduct up to two months’ rent to pay for it
- Petition a court to require the owner to fix it.
- List the required number of days a landlord has to remedy the situation (see timeframe below).
- If the owner has not corrected the situation in the allotted time frame, a renter may use the remedy they indicated in the notice.
Timeframe 1 – Habitability issues. In these cases an owner has 3 calendar days to take substantial action to remedy. (This means the furnace has broken in the middle of January)
Timeframe 2 – In a non-habitability, or contract issue, an owner has 10 calendar days to remedy.
In addition, if there is a condition that creates immediate threat of imminent loss of life or significant physical harm, an owner is required by this statute to commence action to correct within 24 hours.
A common concern of many tenants is “When can my landlord (or property manager) or their contractor enter my apartment?” In Utah, the law considers 24 hours notice advance written notice to be reasonable in most situations, but in some cases less notice is acceptable. Some instances when less notice is acceptable is:
▪ In an emergency;
▪ When conducting an inspection;
▪ To make repairs or other improvements;
▪ To show the apartment to prospective residents, purchasers or lenders;
▪ To provide entry to contractors;
▪ When you move out or if you give reason to believe you have abandoned the apartment
Do I need to be present for them to enter? In most instances, No. Vision Real Estate will always try to accommodate its residents. Unfortunately, it isn’t always possible for maintenance, repairs, and contractors to fit into your busy schedule. In your lease, you have authorized Vision Real Estate, it’s employees, and its contractors to enter the property when needed. Please try to work with your Property Manager if they need to enter. They are not there to harass you; they are there to help.
A landlord can give you a written 3-day notice if you have done any of the following:
▪ Failed to pay the rent;
▪ Violated any term of your rental agreement
▪ Damaged the apartment
▪ Disturbed other residents
▪ Use the apartment for illegal purposes
The 3-day notice will tell you either: (1) that you must do something within three days to correct the problem, for example pay any past due rent or stop violating a rule or term of your rental agreement; or (2) that the problem cannot be fixed by you, and that you must leave within three days. If you have questions, you should consult an attorney or Legal Aid.
The Federal Fair Housing Act prevents owners/landlords from discriminating against anyone based off of 7 protected classes:
- National Origin
- Familial Status
Utah has chosen to make “source of income” a protected class (defined as government assistance, child support, etc.) And several cities within Utah have chosen to also protect sexual orientation & gender identity.
BYU is protected from certain aspects of Fair Housing being a private religious institution. This doesn’t mean that they discriminate against you. It does mean that BYU approved housing can hold tenants to certain standards as outlined in BYU’s code of ethics. (This is why BYU housing can state men/women only)
At Vision Real Estate we always abide by fair housing laws as mandated by state & federal laws, as well as BYU housing exceptions.
Any home built prior to 1978 is required by law to have you sign a lead paint disclosure. Our disclosure is located within our lease. If your property was built prior to 1978 please be sure to let us know if you have any cracked or peeling paint so that we can remedy the problem.
If you find yourself in a situation where you have a special need or an accommodation PLEASE contact your manager as soon as you can to discuss options.