Landlord-Tenant disputes are one of our community’s most common sources of conflict. Misconceptions often make these conflicts seem unsolveable, but with a little bit of education and communication, the majority of them can be managed without the need for the intervention of the courts which can lead to time consuming, expensive litigation. Depending on the courts to resolve a landlord-tenant dispute is invariably a “someone must win and someone must lose” situation, while alternative dispute resolution methods such as mediation allow the people involved to form a solution that works for them both.
Landlord-Tenant disputes are one of our specialties here at ESCRO where we strive to help facilitate a resolution that helps preserve relationships, as well as your respect and dignity.
Some general advice: Try to avoid getting into a dispute in the first place by understanding your legal rights and responsibilities according to the law. Understand the difference between a lease and month-to-month tenancy and the laws that govern each one. The guidebook Tenants and Landlords: A Practical Guide (see link below) provides a good explanation of how this works in Michigan.
If there is a problem on either side, make sure to notify the other party immediately and be open to finding solutions. Attempt to discuss the situation by phone and then put your concerns in writing. Be sure to make hard copies and notes of all correspondence regarding any problems with the property or the tenancy.
We recommend the following rental housing resource links (they open in a new window) which you may want to bookmark to dig deeper into later.
- Michigan Tenant Counseling Program
- Tenants and Landlords: A Practical Guide (Michigan specific PDF, 2013 revision)
- Michigan Legal Help: Housing Topics Section
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What’s Your Situation?
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