During the 2019 Colorado legislative session a number of Bills passed that affect property managers, landlords and tenants.
Some of the Bills highlights:
This Bill concerns the rental application process for prospective tenants. Some of the Bill’s highlights include:
A landlord shall not charge a prospective tenant a rental application fee unless it uses the entire amount of the fee to cover the costs in processing the rental application. Those costs may be based on:
- the actual expense incurred in processing the rental application; or
- the average expense incurred per prospective tenant in the course of processing multiple rental applications.
A landlord shall not charge a prospective tenant a rental application fee that is a different amount than a fee charged to another prospective tenant who applies to rent:
- the same dwelling unit; or
- if the landlord offers more than 1 dwelling unit for rent at the same time, any other dwelling unit offered by the landlord.
A landlord shall provide to any prospective tenant who has paid a rental application fee either a disclosure of the anticipated expenses for which the fee will be used or an itemization of the actual expenses incurred; and shall provide a receipt for any fee received.
- A landlord who receives a rental application fee and does not use the entire amount of the fee to cover the costs in processing the rental application shall return the remaining amount of the fee.
- If a landlord uses rental history or credit history as criteria in consideration of an application, it shall not consider that history beyond 7 years immediately preceding the date of the application.
- If a landlord uses criminal history as a criterion in consideration of an application, it shall not consider that arrest record from any time or any conviction that occurred more than 5 years before the date of the application; except for some specified convictions or deferred judgments.
- If a landlord denies a rental application, it shall provide a written notice of the denial that states the reasons for the denial.
- A landlord that violates provisions of the Act can be held liable for treble the amount of the rental application fee, plus court costs and reasonable attorney’s fees.
- (This Bill is effective 8/2/19)
HB19-1118 (Time Period to Cure Lease Violation)
This Bill concerns the time allowed for a tenant to cure a lease violation that is not a substantial violation. Some of the Bill’s highlights include:
- A landlord must provide 10 days written notice before starting an action for eviction of a residential tenant after any default in the payment of rent by the tenant.
- This 10 day notice also applies to a tenant’s initial violation of a non-monetary lease provision.
- It does not apply to commercial leases, employer-provided housing, or exempt residential agreements.
- There is an exception for landlords who own 5 or fewer single-family homes, with certain conditions.
- (This Bill is effective 5/20/19)
HB19-1170 (Residential Tenants Health and Safety Act)
This Bill concerns the increasing tenant protections relating to the residential warranty of habitability. Some of the Bill’s highlights include:
- Expands a tenant’s ability to seek relief if conditions are present that affect the habitability of their premises.
- An uninhabitable condition now includes mold or other conditions that cause the premises to be damp.
- Methods of notifying the landlord of problems and time limits for a landlord to correct defective conditions.
- Situations when a landlord may be required to move the tenant to another unit, or pay for moving costs or a temporary location to reside.
- Rights of a tenant to deduct rent payments for repair of defective conditions, or to terminate a lease agreement for recurring defective conditions.
- (This Bill is effective 8/2/19)
HB19-1328 (Landlord and Tenant Duties Regarding Bed Bugs)
This Bill concerns bed bugs in residential premises, and, in connection therewith, establishing duties for landlords and tenants in addressing the presence of bed bugs.
- A tenant must promptly notify their landlord when they know or reasonably suspect that their dwelling unit contains bed bugs.
- The landlord has up to 96 hours after receiving notice of the bed bug problem to inspect the property or have it inspected by a qualified inspector.
- The landlord shall provide reasonable written or electronic notice before entering the tenant’s dwelling prior to any inspection or treatment of bed bugs.
- If the presence of bed bugs are confirmed, an inspection of all contiguous dwelling units shall also be inspected.
- The landlord is responsible for all costs associated with an inspection for, and treatment of, bed bugs, except as otherwise provided in the statute.
- The tenant shall comply with reasonable measures to permit the inspection and treatment of bed bugs and is responsible for the costs associated with preparing the unit for inspection and treatment.
- A tenant that knowingly and unreasonably fails to comply with the inspection and treatment requirements of the Bill is liable for the cost of any bed bug treatments of the dwelling and any contiguous units if the need for treatments arises from their noncompliance.
- The Bill also contains additional rights and remedies for both the landlord and tenant.
- (This Bill is effective 1/1/20)