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14 Landlord Disclosures Required For Residential Leases

California law requires specific landlord disclosures within every lease agreement. Some landlord disclosures are necessary only if they are relevant to the property. Others must be included in all rental agreements. San Francisco landlords should understand these mandatory California landlord disclosures concerning a rental unit and its surrounding area.

Required Landlord Disclosures

#1: Registered Sex Offender Database

Landlords must provide prospective tenants information about California’s registered sex offender database. This website allows the public to access the names and addresses of all registered offenders. Keep in mind, landlords do not need to inform tenants of offenders that live nearby. They simply need to let tenants know that the database exists.

Landlord disclosures should include specific language.

Landlords should use the following language in rental agreements: “Notice: Pursuant to Section 290.46 of the Penal Code, information about specified registered sex offenders is made available to the public via an Internet Web site maintained by the Department of Justice at Depending on an offender’s criminal history, this information will include either the address at which the offender resides or the community of residence and zip code in which he or she resides.”

#2: Information on Bed Bugs 

All lease or rental agreements in California must give prospective tenants information about bed bugs. It must explain the behavior of bed bugs, what they look like, when they usually appear. It must also list how to prevent and treat infestations. Additionally, information must explain the importance of reporting of suspected infestations promptly to the landlord. If a tenant requests, San Francisco landlords must disclose bedbug infestations that have occurred within the past two years.

#3: Landlord Contact Information 

In all new leases, or when the tenant requests it upon renewal, California landlords must provide in writing their full name, phone number, and address. They must also include information on how the tenant is to pay rent. Landlords must provide contact information on any new owner or manager of the rental.

Additional Landlord Disclosures

The following landlord disclosures are only required if they are relevant to the property. This would depend on factors such as when the unit was constructed, and the conditions of the property.

#4: Lead Based Paint Information 

For properties built before 1978, landlords must include in the lease agreement a warning of the potential hazards of lead-based paint. To that end, they must also provide an informational handout that explains the hazards of lead-based paint. This is a federal requirement. 

#5: Existence of Toxic Mold

Landlords who are aware of toxic mold in a rental unit must notify prospective tenants in writing. In addition, landlords must supply tenants a consumer handbook provided by the State Department of Health Services on the health risks of mold.

#6: Methamphetamine or Fentanyl Contamination 

If a property was used as a drug lab and requires remediation and cleanup, the landlord must notify rental applicants in writing and include a copy of the remediation order. Potential tenants must sign and acknowledge that they received this notice. If a landlord fails to properly disclose drug contamination, a tenant can void the rental agreement.

#7: Death on the Property

A landlord must disclose the death of an occupant on a property within the past three years of making the premises available to rent. While the landlord does not need to disclose the cause of death, or that someone living on the property had HIV or died from AIDS, they must not intentionally misrepresent the cause of death. 

#8: Notice of Pest Control 

If a pest control company provided treatment at a rental unit, the landlord disclosures must include a notice from the pest control company to any new tenant. The notice must clearly outline the type of pest treated, the pesticides used, the active ingredients, and the frequency of the service.

 #9: Demolition Plans

The landlord must provide written notice of an application for a permit to demolish a rental unit to prospective tenants. Similarly, landlords must disclose their intent to demolish the property before accepting any deposits or fees.

#10: Flood Hazard Area

Landlord disclosures must include any actual knowledge that a property is located in an area of potential flooding. This applies to leases signed after July 1, 2018. These landlord disclosures must direct the tenant to additional information available at the Office of Emergency Services website.

#11: No Smoking Policy

Landlords who prohibit or limit smoking on a rental property must include a clause that defines the areas where smoking is limited or prohibited. This applies to leases signed after January 1, 2012.

For leases signed before January 1, 2012, landlords must continue to follow local smoking ordinances that were in effect on or before January 1, 2012. Any new smoking policy requires adequate notice in writing. In addition, landlords must provide thirty days written notice of new smoking policies to any month-to-month tenants.

#12: Shared Utilities

In the case of rental units that share meters for gas and electricity, landlords must inform potential tenants that they will be sharing meters with other units. Further, landlord disclosures must list the method for dividing the utility bills between the tenants.

#13: Proximity to Former Military Training Grounds

If landlords have actual knowledge that a rental is within one mile of a former military training ground that may contain explosives, they are required to notify any potential tenants in writing.

#14:  Unit in a Condominium Conversion Project 

Landlords must disclose when a multifamily building is in the process of converting to separate units that will be sold to individual owners.

Recommended Landlord Disclosures: Proposition 65 Warning 

While not required, it’s wise for landlords to post a copy of the California Proposition 65 Warning Notice in a visible location, such as a parking lot or common area. This notice informs prospective tenants that while on the property they may be exposed to chemicals such as tobacco smoke or vehicle exhaust.

Whether you’re a landlord or tenant, we can help navigate landlord disclosures.

As experienced San Francisco landlord-tenant attorneys, we help both landlords and tenants understand their options related to California housing law. For over 30 years, the team at Steven Adair MacDonald & Partners has successfully resolved landlord-tenant disputes and real estate issues. To schedule a consultation, please call 415-991-6078.

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