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7 ways Indiana landlords try to cheat tenants

7 ways Indiana landlords try to cheat tenants
Posted at 12:01 PM, Feb 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-19 12:01:47-05

INDIANAPOLIS -- Renting apartments and houses in central Indiana continues to keep pace with the popularity of owning a home.

But when you don't own the property, navigating issues can be tricky and landlords can take advantage of situations you may not know the full story behind. 

To better stay informed, here are seven ways landlords in Indiana can try to cheat their tenants, according to the Neighborhood Christian Legal Clinic.

1. They fail to make repairs, even though it’s the law (IC 32-31-8-5 to be exact)

2. They try to skirt the law by writing in the lease that the tenant accepts the property “as is” and has to make all repairs themselves; (This is prohibited unless the transaction is structured as a purchase of the property)

3. They shut off utilities as a means to evict or harass tenants, which is illegal

4. They claim monetary damages against tenants for items that are considered “ordinary wear and tear” or for defects that existed when the lease started (broken blinds, doors, stained carpet)

5.  They include a bedbug or pest addendum in a contract that requires tenants to pay all costs of treatment, regardless of the cause (this can be $1,000 or more and can result in eviction if not paid)

6. They structure transactions as a rent-to-buy agreement or land contract in order to receive a large down payment and a high interest rate, while removing all tenant protections

7. They fail to provide a property that is in safe, clean, and habitable condition.

We're gathering a list of violations reported at apartments across Marion County for a report here later and on RTV6 News at 11 p.m. We're looking into which apartments had the most violations and what those violations were.


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