Student Life

Off Campus Housing

Rights & Responsibilities


Property owners/managers must:

  • Comply with the requirements of all applicable building and housing codes affecting health and safety
  • Make all repairs and do whatever is necessary to keep the premises in a fit and habitable condition
  • Keep all common areas of the premises in a clean and safe condition
  • Maintain in good and safe working order and condition all electrical, plumbing, sanitary, heating, ventilating, and other facilities and appliances
  • Provide and maintain appropriate containers for the removal of trash and other waste generated during occupancy of the dwelling unit and arrange for their removal in compliance with the code requirements; it is the duty of the landlord to provide tenants with information regarding trash disposal and quiet hours regulation
  • Supply running water and reasonable amounts of hot water at all times
  • Supply 68 degrees Fahrenheit temperature in the unit from October 1 through April 30 and in September and May if the temperature falls below 60 degrees
  • Provide for the quiet enjoyment of the premises by the tenant, which means privacy, peace, and quiet use of the premises and involves notifying the tenant of intention to enter the premises for any reasonable purpose (24 hour notice unless it is an emergency, in which case the landlord can enter without notice)
  • The following are reasons a landlord may enter the property: Emergency, Inspection Repairs, To show to perspective tenants, During a tenants extended absents.
  • Supply tenants with a certificate which shows that he or she has the required rental license and that no major code violations are on record.


Rental Owner Documents

Certificate of Rental Suitability- Bill #060010A

As of September 2006, landlords are required to supply tenants with a certificate which shows that he or she has the required rental license and that no major code violations are on record. For more information about this bill go to:


Basic Tenant Rights and Responsibilities

Tenants must:

  • Use the dwelling unit for residential purposes only (not for business or commercial purposes and not for any illegal activity)
  • Limit the number of people living in the unit to the number of people written into the lease. However, this does not mean that the landlord can restrict your right to have visitors on the premises and reasonable overnight guests
  • Pay rent and utility bills that are the tenant's responsibility under the lease, on the due dates and in the agreed way
  • Keep unit clean and safe; promptly notify landlord of any damage to the premises; pay for any damage caused by tenant or his/her guests; this does not apply to normal wear and tear and maintenance of the property, which are the responsibilities of the landlord
  • Dispose of all trash and other waste in a clean and safe manner and according to the instructions provided by the landlord; if tenants violate trash disposal rules they can be fined by the City of Philadelphia
  • Use electrical, plumbing and heating facilities in a safe and careful manner
  • Not destroy, deface, damage the premises or remove any part of the premises
  • Not make any alteration to the premises without first getting the property owner's consent in writing
  • Not keep any animals in the unit, unless permitted by the lease ("special animals" for people with disabilities are excepted)
  • Not change locks to the premises without written permission from property owner, who must have access to the premises at all times, in case of an emergency
  • Conduct themselves, and require any person on the premises with tenant's consent to conduct themselves, in a manner that will not disturb the other tenants' peaceful enjoyment of the premises
  • Report all problems with the apartment to the property owner/manager; communicate problems with the property and give notices in writing; keep copies of all written communication with the property owner/manager
  • Leave apartment clean and in a condition similar to the one at the beginning of the lease, wear and tear excepted
  • Fill out a move-in/move-out checklist
  • Provide proper written notice of intention to terminate or renew lease
  • Provide written notification of forwarding address for the return of security deposit


The Eviction Process

*Before you can be evicted, a landlord must first present you with a written notice.


  • Failure to pay rent
  • Undue damage
  • Disturbing others
  • Overcrowding
  • Impairing safety
  • Illegal activity
What to do if: