Arkansas Law on Implied Warranty of Habitability

In the state of Arkansas, there exists no law for the implied warranty of habitability for tenants in a residential or even commercial property, but in every single state in the country, this law does exist. The legislation for the state has made some strides in the right general direction, but it is slow going and may take time before Arkansas has this same law.

There are certain obligations that both tenant and landlord have during a lease or rental period for the unit or house. These generally include access and use of the property at the start of the lease or rental agreement, a security deposit, utility access and the habitability of the property. While Arkansas does lack this for residential housing for rental units, there is a form of the law for the real estate purchase. This is an implied warranty of workmanship that applies to newer housing sold through a deal between buyer and seller. For rental units, the leaseholder or renter may need to wait for the future to catch up.

What Is the Implied Warranty of Habitability

In any other state, there is a warranty
that applies to the habitability for residential housing. This warranty provides for the fit and hospitability of a property so that human habitation is possible. For the duration of the lease or rental period, the unit must remain in this state by the landlord to ensure that no violations of the law occur. However, the landlord may violate the law and incur penalties or face possible litigation for the actions. It is important to ensure that the unit is livable and within the parameters of the law for every state other than Arkansas.

Why the Law is Necessary

There are still many apartments, condos, houses for lease and other units available that are uninhabitable that a landlord may attempt to rent to someone. Even with these laws in effect throughout the country, there are numerous instances where the landlord does not incur a violation because tenants are either unwilling or unable to bring the matter to the light of law enforcement. To seek damages for any injury to economic or non-economic matters, the person would need to hire a lawyer, and anyone that lives in a place nearly uninhabitable with low rent may not have the funds to hire a lawyer.

There exist other misconceptions that hiring a lawyer to pursue a legal claim against a landlord is only possible with paying an upfront amount or a deposit. However, when the owner or manager of a building does not maintain the utilities, pipes, heating and cool or the livability of a unit, this often is a detriment to the health of any tenant. The damages owed for violations of the real estate laws are possible through litigation, but the person must pursue a legal claim. It is essential to recover from the incident to ensure the health and well-being of the tenant, and after living in such hostile environments, the individual may need medical care.

The Connection to Arkansas

There are several rules that landlords must follow when housing individuals in the state of Arkansas. These are often close to the implied warranty laws regarding habitation of a unit. The apartment or house for rent or lease must have certain maintenance based on the contract between the landlord and the tenant. However, enforcement generally involves any breach of the agreement and not in upholding the laws of the state. Without this specific law in Arkansas, a tenant may possess fewer rights than when living anywhere else in the country for the necessary habitation of the unit.

Even without the law, Arkansas landlords still must provide the unit during the period of rent or lease. If the person does not, rent may reduce based on stipulations in the contract. However, the contractual obligations are more with commercial real estate, and the landlords may have more power and rights over the tenant in residential matters. This reduces the possible damages that a tenant may have a right to when seeking litigation. There are several federal laws that will affect these matters such as the Fair Housing Act.

Violations of the Law

Arkansas laws have little to do with the warranty of habitability of a unit, but they must remain in adherence to the Fair Housing Act. For violations or discrimination in housing, a tenant may need to hire a lawyer. Contract disputes may also lead to litigation.

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Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication at the time it was written. It is not intended to provide legal advice or suggest a guaranteed outcome as individual situations will differ and the law may have changed since publication. Readers considering legal action should consult with an experienced lawyer to understand current laws they may affect a case.

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