Both renters and landlords have rights. As a renter, you have the right to a safe apartment in functioning condition, and the landlord has the right to receive your rent payments on time. There are also varying legal matters surrounding who is responsible for utilities, maintenance and repairs that you should know. Tenants' rights, or renters' rights, are for the most part set by state law, so research the specific laws that affect tenants in your state.
The following are some fairly common tenant rights that may or may not be applicable in your state.
Your Landlord's Responsibilities
Renting is a two-way street. You are required to keep up your end of the bargain, and the landlord has certain responsibilities as well.
There are certain actions your landlord is not allowed to take, no matter what the situation. A landlord cannot shut off utilities, take anything that belongs to you, change the locks or otherwise lock you out of your apartment to force you to pay rent or leave the apartment. A landlord also cannot raise the rent or threaten to evict you for taking legal action against the landlord. You might want to consult professional legal counsel if either situation arises. A landlord is not permitted to abuse the right to enter the apartment, meaning that the landlord is not allowed to harass a tenant with repeated visits.