Landlord Quick Tip – Are You Liable If Tenant’s Friend Injured?

The answer is YES.

Most landlords are careful who they rent to, but it’s harder to manage a tenant’s guests. If those guests cause problems, like damaging the property or disturbing — even harming — other tenants, or if that guest is injured, the landlord often is the first to be blamed.

Give your guest policy a one-two punch:

First, make sure you have a provision in your lease that makes it clear the tenant — not the landlord — is liable for the actions of unruly guests.  This provision is often placed in the termination clause, allowing the landlord to evict a tenant who befriends the wrong people.  The guest must be required to follow all of the same house rules that tenants must follow.

Next, consider asking your tenants to carry renters insurance.  A special liability rider can be purchased which may pay if a tenant’s actions cause a guest’s injury.  With such a policy in place, the landlord becomes an unlikely target for a lawsuit.

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