Eviction

questions & answers

Question: I moved into a manufactured house on the first of april with two small dogs. In the lease it states that I can have two small dogs and two domestic cats. The other day my landlord came and verbally told me I could not keep my dogs in doors at night and if I do I have 30 days to move out. Can he do that? It says nothing in my lease about not being able to bring them in at night. I understand he doesn't want them roaming around inside while Im at work all day!! dog's are house trained. He wants me to write a letter stating I want to move out because of this.

Answer: The relationship between a landlord and tenant is primarily governed by the terms of the tenancy agreement, with certain statutory exceptions.  Residential leases are governed by Arizona’s Residential Landlord Tenant Act, enacted as A.R.S. 33-1301 through 33-1381.  http://www.azleg.gov/ArizonaRevisedStatutes.asp?Title=33  The Act does impose certain obligations on both parties, such as the landlord’s obligation to provide a written copy of the rental agreement and the tenant’s obligation to pay rent.  However, there are very few provisions that are banned from rental agreements.  A.R.S. 33-1315 http://www.azleg.gov/FormatDocument.asp?inDoc=/ars/33/01315.htm&Title=33&DocType=ARS  Thus, the landlord and tenant are free to include almost anything they desire in the agreement. 
Despite this broad contracting ability, the law does impose a duty of good faith on all terms of the agreement.  A.R.S. 33-1311 http://www.azleg.gov/FormatDocument.asp?inDoc=/ars/33/01311.htm&Title=33&DocType=ARS  Thus, both the landlord and tenant must act in good faith in the enforcement or performance of a provision in the lease agreement.  This would include a provision governing pets.  It is impossible to say whether the lease agreement or the duty of good faith has been violated in this situation without an examination of the lease and the actions of all parties involved.  Therefore, it would be best to consult a licensed attorney who practices in property law, specifically landlord-tenant relationships.
As a final note, it is always important to remember that the law places great weight on written documents, especially written declarations of intention or action.  Therefore, great caution should be used when deciding whether to create a written document containing legally significant statements, such as an intention to prematurely terminate a lease agreement.  An attorney should also be consulted before providing such a document.
Additional resources and information concerning landlord-tenant relationships can be obtained from the Arizona Department of Housing.  http://www.azhousing.gov/

QUESTIONS

  • I moved into a manufactured house on the first of april with two small dogs. In the lease it states that I can have two small dogs and two domestic cats. The other day my landlord came and verbally told me I could not keep my dogs in doors at night and if I do I have 30 days to move out. Can he do that? It says nothing in my lease about not being able to bring them in at night. I understand he doesn't want them roaming around inside while Im at work all day!! dog's are house trained. He wants me to write a letter stating I want to move out because of this.

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