Tenants and Landlords: A Practical Guide

This booklet is designed to inform tenants and landlords about their rights and responsibilities in rental relationships. It serves as a useful reference—complete with the following:

  • An in-depth discussion about rental-housing law in an easy-to-read question and answer format
  • Important timelines that outline the eviction process and recovering or keeping a security deposit
  • A sample lease, sublease, roommate agreement, lead-based paint disclosure form, and inventory checklist
  • Sample letters about repair and maintenance, termination of occupancy, and notice of forwarding address; and
  • Approved court forms.

Whether you are a tenant or a landlord, when you sign a lease agreement, you sign a contract. You are contractually obligated to perform certain duties and assume certain responsibilities. You are also granted certain rights and protections under the lease agreement. This informational booklet is intended only as a practical guide—it is not a substitute for competent legal advice.

Rental-housing law is complex. We are grateful to the faculty and students of the Rental Housing Clinic at Michigan State University–Detroit College of Law for writing this booklet. Their good work is greatly appreciated.

Owners of mobile-home parks, owners of mobile homes who rent spaces in the parks, and renters of mobile homes may have additional rights. For more information, please contact the Building Division of the Michigan Department of

Consumer and Industry Services at (517) 241-9347. It is our pleasure to provide this information to you. We hope that you find it useful.

Source: State of Michigan web site; Michigan.gov

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