Landlord and Tenant Rights and Responsibilities

questions & answers

Question: Can the landlord/real estate/property manager ask my wife to leave our home during a move out walk through? Can questions be asked and opinions be stated by us (renters) during walk through? Are scuffs on stairs facial wear and tear? If scuffs were already in home prior to move in, are we responsible for all the scuffs?

Answer: Under the Arizona Residential Landlord and Tenant Act, a tenant must “exercise diligence to maintain the premises in as good condition as when he took possession, ordinary wear and tear excepted” (A.R.S. 33-321), so landlords may not charge their tenants for damage that predated the tenancy or for ordinary wear and tear. There is no set definition of what counts or does not count as ordinary wear and tear, but any damage that existed when the tenant moved in remains the landlord’s responsibility (which is why it is so important for tenants to conduct both their move-in walkthroughs and their move-out walkthroughs with the landlord and/or to take photos and/or video of the condition of the dwelling both as they move in and as they move out). As for who may participate in the move-out walk-through, in theory any tenant who is named on the lease should be able to be present (unless, of course, the person has already been banned from the premises or is engaging in inappropriate conduct).

QUESTIONS

  • Can the landlord/real estate/property manager ask my wife to leave our home during a move out walk through? Can questions be asked and opinions be stated by us (renters) during walk through? Are scuffs on stairs facial wear and tear? If scuffs were already in home prior to move in, are we responsible for all the scuffs?

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