Property Management Education

Five Reasons Denver Landlords Get Sued (And How to Avoid It!)

Marc Cunningham - Sunday, March 31, 2019

It’s every landlord’s worst nightmare — getting sued. 

What are the top reasons Denver, Thornton, and Westminster landlords get sued? We have five of the top reasons, plus how you can avoid getting sued and sustain a healthy relationship with your tenants


1. Incorrect Security Deposit Returns

The first reason a tenant may sue is for incorrect security deposit returns, or a lack of return at all. 

If a tenant moves out of your property and you as a landlord incorrectly withhold more money than you should, and charge for damages you shouldn’t charge for, it can upset tenants to the point that they may consider suing.

How to Avoid Getting Sued: 

  • Recognize what is actually damage, and what is just regular wear and tear.
  • Return the security deposit on time.
  • Review security deposit laws in Colorado. 

Want more info about security deposits specifically? Check out our What Can I Charge to Tenants Security Deposit? blog and video.


2. Maintenance Health Issues

Colorado tenants bring up maintenance issues all the time. Some requests are more serious than others, but all require careful attention by the landlord. 

When maintenance requests are procrastinated or ignored completely, they may develop into serious health issues (think about a small water leak eventually turning into mold). 

How to Avoid Getting Sued:

  • Take repair requests seriously.
  • Investigate every maintenance request regardless of how silly you think it might be. 
  • Communicate with tenants about the status of the maintenance request.


3. Unenforceable Terms or Fees

Thornton Property Management

At times, landlords will write things into the lease agreement that are quite frankly illegal or just don’t make sense.

Charging ridiculous fees or saying that you have the ability to terminate the lease agreement with a three day notice, is going to upset people. 

How to Avoid Getting Sued:

  • Make sure your lease agreement is compliant with your state law. Most states (including Colorado) don’t provide a standard lease. It’s up to you as a landlord to make sure your lease complies with state law.
  • Make sure your lease is reasonable and professional.


4. Violation of Quiet Enjoyment

Thornton Property Management

You may own the property, but the tenant still has the right to enjoy their privacy. Entering the residence without permission can leave people with a bad impression. 

How to Avoid Getting Sued:

  • Give the tenant the right to enjoy the property by giving them a notice before you enter.
  • Before repairing something, get approval from the tenant. 
  • No security cameras in the tenant’s property. 


5. Unrealistic Expectations

The number one reason Denver landlords get sued isn’t about the things they are doing wrong, rather the problem lies with delivering unrealistic expectations. 

Promising one thing while doing another isn’t the consistency tenants need. 

How to Avoid Getting Sued:

  • Know how you’ll react and respond to certain tenant complaints and situations.
  • Deliver realistic expectations from the beginning, and many problems will go away.


Get Your Denver Property Management Questions Answered with Grace Property Management

We know not every relationship between you and your tenant will be perfect, but you can eliminate many unnecessary issues by being aware of the five reasons tenants sue that are outlined above. 

Looking for more Denver property management resources? Check out our blog for helpful content about various property management topics



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