Tenant Death & Landlord Rights

Written by lainie petersen Google
  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Share
  • Pin
  • Email
Tenant Death & Landlord Rights
Not even death ends a tenant, landlord relationship. (angel of death. image by Tom Oliveira from Fotolia.com)

A landlord has specific rights and responsibilities when faced with the death of a tenant. State laws govern how a landlord can enforce lease terms, relet the dwelling and dispose of a tenant's property.

Other People Are Reading

State by State

Rental laws are state-by-state. States can have very different laws for tenant-landlord relationships, so it is important not to assume that a practice that is legal in one state is legal in any other state.

Future Rent

Even when a tenant dies, in most states the lease remains in effect. A landlord then has the right to the rent as agreed upon in the lease and can sue the tenant's estate for the balance.

Reclaiming the Unit

If a tenant had a lease, the tenant's estate now holds that lease and landlords may not rent the dwelling unless, and until, the lease lapses or is terminated. If the tenant had a month-to-month arrangement, the landlord must follow state law regarding the termination of periodic tenancies.

The Tenant's Property

A tenant's property belongs to the tenant's estate. Once a lease has been terminated, the landlord may remove this property, but must safely store it according to state law. In some cases, if property remains unclaimed for a period of time, the landlord can sell it and recoup the costs of storage and any other money owed by the tenant.


A landlord can find himself in big trouble if he attempts to rent the dwelling or remove the tenant's belongings prior to proper termination of tenancy.

Don't Miss

  • All types
  • Articles
  • Slideshows
  • Videos
  • Most relevant
  • Most popular
  • Most recent

No articles available

No slideshows available

No videos available

By using the eHow.co.uk site, you consent to the use of cookies. For more information, please see our Cookie policy.