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What Landlords Need to Know About Renting to US Military Tenants

US military servicemember and family in front of their  homeWhen renting the U.S. military tenants, there are specific federal laws that landlords need to be aware of. That’s because renting to military tenants is different from leasing to other tenants. Especially when it comes to administering tenants who break their leases or are periodically absent for training. Then there is the matter of securing the property, and collecting late rental payments. So, as a landlord, you do need to know what the law says about renting a property to tenants on military duty. And how it may affect the tenant-landlord relationship to avoid violating your tenant’s rights.

Breaking the Lease

Members of the U.S. military come under the mandate of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA). The SCRA focuses on helping active military personnel and their families handle certain financial and legal obligations. The SCRA covers many situations, which an active member of the military who is leasing a home, may come across. As stated by this federal law, property owners are mandated to allow a tenant to break a lease without penalty if certain conditions are met.

For example, if military personnel receive orders of transfer more than 35 miles from the property, a discharge, or if there is a loss of life, they can legally break their lease. While permitting a military tenant to break their lease can be a burden, by law renters cannot be penalized. Or their security or other deposits withheld for breaking a lease due to transfers or other service-related circumstances. 

What Landlords Need to Know About Training Absences.

Active members of the military may be required to attend training at locations around the country. Training can be as short as two weeks or as long as a month or more, depending on which branch of the military he or she belongs to. Or where they have been stationed. When a military tenant alerts you that they will be away for training, it is important to note that even an extended absence is not grounds for eviction or other legal action. As long as the tenant intends to return to the property and continues to fulfill the lease terms, a landlord must continue the lease.

 Securing the Property

In the event of an extended absence, property landlords may have fears about the security of their rental house. That is because vacant properties are likely to be the target of vandals of break-ins and beyond. If a landlord lives close to his rental property, observing it or even visiting the property to make sure that nothing goes wrong, is a possibility. However, if you are not in a situation to do so, other alternatives may help keep your property protected. From security systems to hiring a property management company such as Real Property Management Premier, there are means to keep an eye on your property for you.

 What Landlords Need to Know About Collecting Late Rental Payments.

Another protection offered by federal law is the prerequisite to delay eviction proceedings for non-payment of rent. If your military tenant or one of their dependents is living in your rental property during their active military service, and the rent is $3,851.03 per month or less, the court is required to give the tenant at least 90 days to address the situation. Whilst the SCRA does not prevent a landlord from serving an eviction notice, it may prevent you from taking action against a servicemember tenant or their dependents.

 How we can help?

Renting to tenants who are active members of the military takes time and knowledge of the law. Inexperienced rental property owners, unaware of the law, can find themselves in legal trouble. But contracting Real Property Management Premier can help. Our team of expert property managers has the necessary experience in leasing properties to military tenants. And they have a full understanding of all related federal, state, and local Florida laws.

With our help, you can better safeguard your valuable property investment. And keep yourself and your tenant free from legal complications. Contact us today for more information.

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