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Problems in Wyoming...Any Advice Appreciated!!!!!

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Problems in Wyoming...Any Advice Appreciated!!!!!

Postby wyoblonde » Thu Aug 10, 2006 3:33 am

Hello,
So far, I have not been able to find any information regarding tenant rights in Wyoming. I learned of a problem tonight that I'm still feeling rather ticked off about, so forgive me if this gets a little lengthy. :wink:
My dad has been renting a house here in Wyoming since 1988, the LL lives in Colorado and to my knowledge has not once visited her property. A few days ago, my dad wrote a letter to the landlord stating that he would be moving out at the beginning of September. Apparently after receiving the letter, the LL called and left a message on my dad's voice mail.
In the message (which I have yet to hear btw) she states that since he is moving out, she is going to sell the house, AND expects my dad to have the house in selling condition before he leaves!! My dad is willing to do it because his GF told him she's seen on CourtTV - or something - where tenants end up in court in similar situations and always end up losing. I, however, think this is a ridiculous request on the LL's part and feel my dad should not worry about it.
Granted, after 18 years in the same house, there are repairs to be made, but since moving in, whenever my dad has told the LL about any repairs, it seemed to go ignored. My dad has bought a new refrigerator, stove and replaced ALL the carpet in this four bedroom house out of his own pocket and plans on leaving the items upon moving out. I remember once when I lived there years ago, the dishwasher crapped out and he called the LL. The LL had a relative drive up a dishwasher, turns out this dishwasher was ancient and never worked. Instead of complaining, my dad let it go. (Just one example of many!)
So, I guess before this turns into a novel, my questions are:
1. What repairs are required of my dad before moving out?
and
2. Should he contact an attorney to protect himself? And if so, what type of attorney, I've looked in the phonebook and wasn't able to find an ad that referenced T/LL issues.
Any and all advice is much appreciated!
TIA,
J in Wyoming :)
wyoblonde
 
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Postby Anna » Thu Aug 10, 2006 2:31 pm

In most cases, T is required to surrender the rental unit is 'broom clean condition' with only 'normal wear & tear' on fixtures, furnishings, floors, etc.
Ts are well-advised to schedule a walk-thru w/LL when surrendering the place. If not available, Ts should have both witness[es] and video/still photos of every possible point of contention. Your dad should keep all receipts [rugs, fridge] in his L&T folder for future reference.

Does your dad have a written lease that makes him responsible for what his LL is asking? Did he ever?

If not, search thru the Wyoming L&T laws Title 34 http://legisweb.state.wy.us/statutes/statutes.aspx for specifics http://attorneygeneral.state.wy.us/consumer.htm and also the web for general guidance, such as these: http://www.tenant.net/Court/nolo/index.html
http://tenant.net/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=4908
http://www.rentlaw.com/normalweartear.htm
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Postby wyoblonde » Thu Aug 10, 2006 8:18 pm

Thank you so much for all your information!! It looks like we have a lot of research to do! I really appreciate all your help, you have made things so much easier for me!!
Thanks again!! :D
wyoblonde
 
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Postby Aubergine » Sun Aug 13, 2006 2:44 pm

Here are some relevant Wyoming landlord-tenant statutes:
WYOMING STATUTES ANNOTATED
Title 1  Code of Civil Procedure
Chapter 21  Procedure and Actions
Article 12  Residential Rental Property

Wyo. Stat. § 1-21-1202 (2006)

§ 1-21-1202 Duties of owners and renters; generally

(a) Each owner and his agent renting or leasing a residential rental unit shall maintain that unit in a safe and sanitary condition fit for human habitation. Each residential rental unit shall have operational electrical, heating and plumbing, with hot and cold running water unless otherwise agreed upon in writing by both parties. Provided, however, this section shall not prevent the rental of seasonal rental units such as summer cabins which are not intended to have such amenities.

(b) Each renter shall cooperate in maintaining his residential rental unit in accordance with this article.

(c) This article does not apply to breakage, malfunctions or other conditions which do not materially affect the physical health or safety of the ordinary renter.

(d) Any duty or obligation in this article may be assigned to a different party or modified by explicit written agreement signed by the parties.

HISTORY: Laws 1999, ch. 198, § 1.

NOTES:

Residential Rental Property Act changed the common law

Wyo. Stat. Ann. §§ 1-21-1202 and 1-21-12-1203 are directly contrary to the common law rule that a landlord owed no duty to a tenant for dangerous or defective conditions of the premises. The Residential Rental Property Act clearly and unequivocally changed the common law by requiring landlords to provide rental premises that are reasonably safe, sanitary, and fit for human habitation. Merrill v. Jansma, 86 P.3d 270 (2004).


Wyo. Stat. § 1-21-1203 (2006)

§ 1-21-1203 Owner's duties; notice by renter of noncompliance; duty to correct; exceptions; termination of rental agreement; liability limited

(a) To protect the physical health and safety of the renter, each owner shall:

(i) Not rent the residential rental unit unless it is reasonably safe, sanitary and fit for human occupancy;

(ii) Maintain common areas of the residential rental unit in a sanitary and reasonably safe condition;

(iii) Maintain electrical systems, plumbing, heating and hot and cold water; and

(iv) Maintain other appliances and facilities as specifically contracted in the rental agreement.

(b) If the renter is current on all payments required by the rental agreement and has reasonable cause supported by evidence to believe the residential rental unit does not comply with the standards for health and safety required under this article, the renter shall advise the owner in writing of the condition and specify the remedial action the renter requests be taken by the owner. Within a reasonable time after receipt of this notice, the owner shall either commence action to correct the condition of the residential rental unit or notify the renter in writing that the owner disputes the renter's claim. The notices required by this subsection shall be served by certified mail or in the manner specified by W.S. 1-21-1003.

(c) The owner shall not be required to correct or remedy any condition caused by the renter, the renter's family or the renter's guests or invitees by inappropriate use or misuse of the property during the rental term or any extension of it.

(d) The owner may refuse to correct the condition of the residential rental unit and terminate the rental agreement if the costs of repairs exceeds an amount which would be reasonable in light of the rent charged, the nature of the rental property or rental agreement. If the owner refuses to correct the condition and intends to terminate the rental agreement, he shall notify the renter in writing within a reasonable time after receipt of the notice of noncompliance and shall provide the renter with sufficient time to find substitute housing, which shall be no less than ten (10) days nor more than twenty (20) days from the date of the notice. If the rental agreement is terminated, the rent paid shall be prorated to the date the renter vacates the unit and any balance shall be refunded to the renter along with any deposit due in accordance with W.S. 1-21-1208.

(e) The owner is not liable under this article for claims for mental suffering or anguish.

HISTORY: Laws 1999, ch. 198, § 1.


Wyo. Stat. § 1-21-1204 (2006)

§ 1-21-1204 Renter's duties

(a) Each renter shall:

(i) Maintain the residential rental unit occupied in a clean and safe condition and not unreasonably burden any common area;

(ii) Dispose of all garbage and other waste in a clean and safe manner;

(iii) Maintain all plumbing fixtures in a condition as sanitary as the fixtures permit;

(iv) Use all electrical, plumbing, sanitary, heating and other facilities and appliances in a reasonable manner;

(v) Occupy the residential rental unit in the manner for which it was designed and shall not increase the number of occupants above that specified in the rental agreement without written permission of the owner;

(vi) Be current on all payments required by the rental agreement;

(vii) Comply with all lawful requirements of the rental agreement between the owner and the renter; and

(viii) Remove all property and garbage either owned or placed within the residential rental unit by the renter or his guests prior to termination of the rental agreement and clean the rental unit to the condition at the beginning of the rental agreement.

HISTORY: Laws 1999, ch. 198, § 1.
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