Off Campus Student Association hosts presentation about tenant rights
Originally sourced from Ocolly.com
"For students living in off-campus housing, unnecessary fees such as pest control could be illegal.
The Off Campus Student Association hosted a presentation Tuesday in the Sequoyah Room of the Student to inform students renting off-campus housing of their rights as tenants.
About 95 percent of the tenants in the Reserve on Perkins are students, representative Jesse Buzzard said.
The presentation also informed students of their legal entitlements to hold their landlords accountable and avoid unnecessary charges.
The legality behind pest control was another topic of discussion during the speech.
The Reserve apartment complex doesn't charge an additional fee to tenants for pest control, Buzzard said.
Buzzard said he knows that another apartment complex in Stillwater, with whom he was previously employed, does charge those fees.
However, the act of charging an extra payment for pest control may not be legal.
“According to the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, landlords can’t charge tenants extra for extermination of pests such as bed bugs or roaches,” Amanda Lilley, a staff attorney for the Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma, said.
Her coworker, Brenda Nipp, agreed with the statement.
“Our position is that tenants do not have the responsibility to fund and contract for pest control on a leased property, Nipp, the managing attorney, said.
One student said her private landlord is trying to make her pay for pest control for an issue involving roaches in her home.
“It’s about $300 to take care of the extermination fees,” Jessie Hickey said. “Our landlord says it’s up to us to fund.”
In order to avoid unfair charges, tenants are advised to always take pictures to document the conditions of the house when moving in to a rented property to prevent any questionable charges, Lilley said."