Students should be aware and informed of their rights as tenants so that they can most effectively advocate for themselves in any circumstance.
The federal Fair Housing Act is part of the Civil Rights Act of 1968 and protects tenants and potential tenants from discrimination based on a protected class — race, color, religion, sex, familial status, or national origin.
The Alabama Landlord Tenant Act has provisions for many aspects of your relationship with your landlord that must be adhered to, no matter what is written in the lease agreement. The law governs things like security deposits, evictions, liability, and maintenance of premises (more overarching than daily or routine maintenance). This law refers to the landlord’s obligations, more than the tenant’s rights.
Under Alabama’s Landlord Tenant Act, landlord obligations include, but are not limited to:
The law also distinguishes between the rental of a single family residence and other kinds of rental units. The lease agreement may stipulate that the tenant is responsible for certain kinds of maintenance or repairs.
To seek legal advice about your lease, landlord, or tenant rights, reach out to UA’s Civil Law Clinic at 205-348-4960. They assist students in understanding tenant’s rights, reviewing lease agreements prior to signing, and/or seeking resolution with landlords.