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Minnesota law regulates temperature in rentals

If you are a tenant (or plan to be) in a Minnesota rental property, you’ll want to stay updated on a new law that takes effect in 2024. If you’ve lived in this state during at least one winter season, you no doubt understand how cold it gets here. In fact, some say this is one of the coldest states in the country in wintertime. What would you do if your landlord set thermostats in your building to less than 68 degrees Fahrenheit during winter months?

When the new tenant/landlord laws take effect, renters can be certain that the temperature in units that do not have individual thermostats will be set at a minimal temperature of 68 degrees Fahrenheit. This new temperature regulation remains active from October to April each year. Laws taking effect in the new year include several additional regulations to help protect your rights as a tenant.

Your landlord cannot force you to declaw or devocalize your pet

Cats and dogs and other types of pets have claws, and most animals have a voice. If you’re residing in a rental unit in Minnesota, come the new year, your landlord cannot require you to declaw or devocalize your pet. This does not necessarily mean that a specific rental contract cannot include noise ordinances, only that landlords cannot force tenants to make their pets undergo surgery to remove their claws or silence their vocal cords.

You may request unit inspections when new tenant/landlord laws take effect

New regulations allow you to request an inspection of your rental unit before you move in. You may also request an inspection before moving out. The latter helps prevent the withholding of security deposits or extra fees for damage or broken items if you were not responsible for the issues in question. For example, if, upon inspection, your unit is in good repair, but you later receive a bill for damage, you’ll have a record of the inspection to refute the charges.

You don’t have to renew a lease earlier than six months prior to its expiration

Some landlords try to bully people into renewing their leases early. To further protect your rights as a tenant in a Minnesota rental unit, a new law prohibits a landlord from requesting a lease renewal any earlier than six months prior to its expiration. No one can threaten to evict you or tell you that the property will not be available for rent if you do not renew your lease early.

It’s wise to stay updated on legislation that will be signed into law in 2024 regarding tenant rights and regulations that govern rental properties. The state provides recourse to any tenant whose landlord has disregarded laws or regulations. Knowing your rights ahead of time is the key to protecting those rights against unfair treatment, discrimination and other unlawful conduct.