Verify Your Landlord
You should only rent from a licensed landlord. Although landlords listing through our rental site are licensed, you should not assume that rental properties listed elsewhere are legally licensed. DC law requires property owners obtain a Basic Business License (BBL) from the DC Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA inorder to legally rent their property. A condition of obtaining the BBL is the property's satisfactory inspection by the DCRA for basic life safety requirements, such as egress, electrical systems, smoke detectors, etc.
DCRA has provided more information regarding property inspection guidelines for tenants and landlords.
To check if a property has a current BBL:
- Go to the DC Property Information Verification System website
- Enter the rental property's address
- Select the Find button
- Go to the bottom of the left hand menu
- Select the tab labeled BBL
Landlord & Tenant Relations
- DC Office of the Tenant Advocate (OTA) advocates for, educates, and provides outreach for DC tenants.
- Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) protects the health, safety, economic interests, and quality of life of residents, business, and vistors in DC by ensuring housing, buidling, and safety code compliance and regulating businesses. DCRA conducts free inspections for tenants and provides consumer education and advocacy services.
- DC Bar: Landlord Tenant Resource Center provides free legal information to unrepresented tenants who have residential housing disputes in DC.
- DC Law Students in Court has local law students available during the academic year to provide advice to unrepresented tenants and assist with submnitting forms and pleadings.
- DC Department of Public Works (DPW) manages trash and recylcing, bulk trash collection, leaf collection, public littercan service, and street and alley cleaning.
- Maryland Attorney General: Landlords and Tenants Tips on Avoiding Disputes
- People's Law Library of Maryland: Landlord/Tenant
- Virginia Residential Landlord and Tenant Act
- Virginia Depatrment of Housing and Community Development Landlord Tenant Handbook