The Fair Housing Act was created in order to ensure that everyone is treated equally during the housing process. It protects tenants from discrimination when seraching for a rental property. At the federal level the Fair Housing Act protects the following classes…
- National Origin
- Familial Status
Learn about fair housing at the federal level here https://resources.hemlane.com/landlord-must-know-fair-housing/
Nebraska protects the same categories as federal law.
(Neb Rev St § 20-318)
Maximum Landlord Can Charge: A landlord may not charge a security deposit more than the equivalent of one month’s rent. A pet deposit of no more than one quarter of one month’s rent may also be charged (N.R.S. § 76-1416(1)).
Permitted Use of Security Deposit: Following the end of a tenancy, landlords may only use the security deposit to compensate for outstanding rent payments and the amount from damages from tenants’ noncompliance with the lease agreement or statutory duties of tenants (N.R.S. § 76-1416(2)).
Deadline for Returning Security Deposit: Landlords are required to return the balance of the remaining security deposit, if any, within 14 days of the termination of a tenancy (N.R.S. § 76-1416(2)).
Security Deposit Deduction Notice Upon Move Out: A written description and itemized list of damages and related charges are to be submitted along with the security deposit, within 14 days of the end of the tenancy (N.R.S. § 76-1416(2)).
Bank Account Requirements: There is no statute.
Failure to Comply: There is no statute.
Rent and Late Fees
Rent Fee: Rent must be paid at the beginning of the month, unless otherwise specified in the lease agreement. For periodic leases of one month or less, the rent must be paid at the beginning of the term (N.R.S. § 76-1414(3)).
Rent Increase: There is no statute specifying an exact period of notice; rather, it should be stated in the lease agreement (N.R.S. § 76-1414(1)).
Late Fees: There is no grace period for late payments. The landlord may charge a fee for late rent payments as specified lease agreement (N.R.S. § 76-1414(1)).
Withholding Rent: A tenant may withhold rent if a landlord fails to provide essential services by providing a written notice specifying the breach. They are entitled to 1) acquire reasonable services and deduct costs from the rent, 2) recover damages upon the cut in fair rental value, 3) procure substitute housing during the period of noncompliance and be excused from rent during the same period (N.R.S. § 76-1427(1)(a-c)).
Repair and Deduct Rent: The tenant cannot repair damages and deduct rent. However, if the landlord is in violation of landlord duties and neglects to make necessary repairs, the tenant may: 1) give 30 days notice to terminate the lease if repairs are not made within 14 days, 2) contact housing code enforcement agency, 3) provide written notice informing landlord of intent to seek legal action if damages are not remedied within 14 days ([N.R.S. § 76-1419](N.R.S. § 76-1419)).
Notices and Entry
Landlord Access to Property: The landlord must give 1 day’s notice of intent to enter. Permission to enter property, only during reasonable hours, is allowed for inspection, repairs, supplying necessary services, or showing the dwelling unit. In the case of an emergency, no consent is needed to enter (N.R.S. § 76-1423).
Notice of Entry With Extended Tenant Absence: If a tenant is absent for 7 days or more, a landlord may enter the unit at “reasonably necessary” times (N.R.S. § 76-1432).
Notice to Terminate Yearly Lease: There is no statute.
Notice to Terminate Month-to-Month Lease: A written notice of at least 30 days is required prior to the specified periodic rental date (N.R.S. § 76-1437(2)).
Notice to Terminate Week-to-Week Lease: A written notice of at least 7 days is required prior to the termination date specified in the notice (N.R.S. § 76-1437(1)).
Duties of Landlord:
- Compliance: Must comply, after notice, with the requirements of related housing codes seriously affecting health and safety N.R.S. § 76-1419(1)(a).
- Repairs: After actual or written notice is submitted, landlords are required to make all necessary repairs to ensure habitable conditions (N.R.S. § 76-1419(1)(b)).
- Common Areas: Landlords are required to keep the common areas of their properties in clean, safe and sanitary conditions (N.R.S. § 76-1419(1)(c)).
- Water and Heat: Landlords must ensure that tenants have access to working heat and water provisions at all times (N.R.S. § 76-1419(1)(f)).
- Maintenance: Landlords must maintain all facilities and appliances required by the lease agreement, including electricity, plumbing, ventilation, heat, air-conditioning, elevators (N.R.S. § 76-1419(1)(d)).
- Garbage: Landlords must provide repositories for garbage and waste disposal and arrange for their removal (N.R.S. § 76-1419(1)(e)).
Duties of Tenant:
- Compliance: Tenants must comply with the standards of building and housing codes that affect health and safety (N.R.S. § 76-1421(1)).
- Garbage: Dispose of their waste in a clean and sanitary manner (N.R.S. § 76-1421(3)).
- Plumbing: Keep the plumbing appliances as clean and sanitary as the condition of the premises permits (N.R.S. § 76-1421(4)).
- Sanitation: Keep space as safe, clean and sanitary, and leave the property in as clean condition as when the tenancy began (N.R.S. § 76-1421(2)).
Appliances: Use all appliances and facilities in a reasonable manner (N.R.S. § 76-1421(5)).
- Damages: Should not deliberately damage or destroy the property or knowingly allow any person to do so (N.R.S. § 76-1421(6)).
- Quiet Enjoyment: Tenants should not behave nor allow any person to behave in such a manner that disturbs the peaceful enjoyment of other tenants (N.R.S. § 76-1421(7)).
- Housing Rules: “Abide by all bylaws, covenants, rules or regulations of any applicable condominium regime, cooperative housing agreement, or neighborhood association not inconsistent with landlord's rights or duties” (N.R.S. § 76-1421(8)).
Retaliation: It is illegal to retaliate against a tenant who has filed a complaint to a government agency or joined a tenants’ union or organization (N.R.S. § 76-1439(1)(a) and (b)).
Lead disclosure: Landlords must inform tenants of lead paint hazards and provide with the lease an information pamphlet on these hazards.
Notice of Termination - Nonpayment: The landlord may terminate the lease agreement if a tenant fails to pay rent when due or within 7 days after receiving a written notice from the landlord (N.R.S. § 76-1431(2)).
Notice of Termination - Lease Violation: A lease agreement may be terminated if a tenant violates the terms of the agreement or the legal duties of the tenant. The landlord must provide a written notice that addresses the breach and the intended termination date for 30 days following the delivery. Tenants have 14 days to make necessary changes. For a second offense within half a year of the first notice, the same process shall follow, but with a written notice of 14 days (N.R.S. § 76-1431(1)).
For more information on Nebraska Landlord Tenant laws please visit their website here.