This article was posted on Friday, Jun 01, 2018

*Receipts Required For a Security Deposit
A security deposit itemization must include receipts or estimates, if you are deducting for items which total $125 or more. If a receipt cannot be obtained within the 21 day period, in which the itemization must be mailed, make reference to the fact that the receipts will be sent once they have been obtained.

*Extra Occupant Joins the Tenancy
You have options if your tenant chooses to bring in additional occupants to your unit. If the rental agreement limits who can occupy the premises, the landlord could serve a “3 Day Notice to Perform or Quit”. This notice would give the tenant three days to remove the unauthorized person. If the tenant does not comply, the landlord may initiate an unlawful detainer action to evict everyone from the unit and terminate the tenancy.

The landlord could also merely raise the rent. Check your lease agreement. Most leases state that the rent will increase, usually by $100 per person. This would be another option as opposed to an eviction action.

*Tenant Demands Return of Prorated Security Deposit
In many instances, you rent a unit to more than one tenant. The fact that one roommate served you with a “Notice to Quit”, does not end that person’s obligations under the lease agreement. The tenant cannot demand a proration of the security deposit. The tenancy that was created can be viewed as a partnership. The security deposit does not need to be accounted for, unless the partnership terminates the tenancy.

*Surveillance Cameras
Landlords do not need to give notice of the installation of security cameras in the common areas. There is one exception. If the cameras also record sound, then your tenants would have to be informed.

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*Eviction Required For Subtenants
If your tenant vacates your unit, leaving an unauthorized subtenant, you cannot use self-help to evict this party. The landlord is required to proceed with an unlawful detainer action. The departing tenant should also be included in the lawsuit. This tenant is still considered to be legally occupying the premises, even though the tenant is not in physical possession of the unit.

*Demand That Rent Be Paid in Cash or Cashier’s Check
A landlord cannot demand that rent be only paid in the form of cash or cashier’s check. An exception does exist in Civil Code Section 1947.3 (a) (2).  Under this code section, if the tenant presents a dishonored check, the landlord can require that payment, for the next three months, be made in the form of cash or cashier’s check. A 3 Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit would be considered defective, if the landlord required cash or cashier’s check within the body of the 3 Day Notice, unless there was a dishonored check.

*No Notice Required For a Fixed Term Lease
Most landlords assume that if a lease is expiring, a 30 or 60 day notice is required to terminate the tenancy. That is an incorrect assumption. If you have a lease which will expire on June 30th, no notice is required to terminate the tenancy. The lease termination date is legal notice of the end of the tenancy. If the landlord accepts rent in July, that would convert the lease to a month to month tenancy. If the landlord does not want the tenant to stay beyond the termination of the lease, it is suggested that an informal letter be sent, which informs the tenant that the lease will not be renewed.

*Landlord’s Address Not Private
Under California law, a landlord must supply a physical address where the tenant can serve notices and legal process.  Furnishing a post office box would not be in compliance with the law.  A landlord can appoint a third party to accept notices and legal process, but it must be at a physical address. If the landlord chooses to use a third party, the selection should be made very carefully.  Notices and legal process served on this person would be considered a legal service which would obligate the landlord.


Dennis Block, of Dennis P. Block & Associates can be reached for information on landlord/tenant law or evictions at any of the following offices:  Los Angeles: 323.938.2868, Encino: 818.986.3147, Inglewood: 310.673.2996, Long Beach:  310.434.5000, Ventura: 805.653.7264, Pasadena: 626.798.1014, Orange: 714.634.823, San Diego: 619.481.5423 or by visiting Now, you can also read Dennis Block on Twitter, or text him at (818) 570-1557.  Get the NEW App for iPhone or Android phones. Search for “EVICT123“.  “Landlord Tenant Radio Weekly Podcasts can be heard at any time at or download the app “EVICT123”.