Millions of Georgia residents are renters of either residential or commercial space. In an ideal world, both landlord and tenant know their rights based on the terms and conditions of the lease that governs the relationship. However, even when it seems like the lease is completely clear, sometimes disputes arise and landlord-tenant litigation begins.
If your landlord-tenant dispute has proceeded to litigation, you need to know your options and how to enforce your rights. This is true for landlords and tenants alike. In many landlord-tenant disputes, termination of the lease is the main issue. It is common for landlords to provide themselves with as much protection as possible on this issue, since it is their property and they typically want a greater amount of power to get rid of “bad” tenants, if necessary. Non-payment of rent or incorrect use of the property can lead landlords to attempt to terminate a lease.
For tenants, a landlord’s failure to maintain the property can be an issue that pushes them toward litigation to enforce their rights. In many leases, the terms typically dictate that landlords are responsible for major repairs and the maintenance of certain systems, like HVAC and electrical, for example. Failure to maintain these types of systems can leave tenants in a position in which they cannot enjoy or use the property in question.
If you are facing landlord-tenant litigation, you should be prepared for a case that will swing on statutes and caselaw. Your arguments will need to put you in the best position to defend your rights under the terms and conditions of the lease.