The Risks of Long-Term Visitors
The lease agreement is the contract signed by the tenant stating that they are bound by the outlined terms and conditions. However, should the tenant allow a guest to stick around for several weeks, it’s almost like having another tenant who is exempt from these rules, which opens the door for potential problems where the landlord has little to no legal recourse. A tenant having long-term visitors may not seem like much at first. Consider someone such as a significant other that comes over a couple of times a week or a scenario where for a week or two the tenant entertains family living abroad. Other examples include retired parents who will be spending a few months with their kids, or even guests staying in the tenant’s home as part of a rental service like Airbnb. Although most cases are normally free of issues, plenty of landlords have dealt with long-term visitor horror stories that have resulted in legal headaches. Depending on the state, if they stick around long enough the guest(s) may even gain squatting rights. The primary concern is being unable to do the standard screening procedure. You're not going to know what the history of this person is. The legal ground for “eviction” is shaky at best and if they cause damage, are excessively loud, or violate the lease, there isn’t much that can be done. Make sure your lease agreement has a guest policy. Consider adding language detailing how many days a guest can stay consecutively or place a limit on how many days a guest can stay within a certain period.
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