AskDefine | Define landlord

Dictionary Definition

landlord n : a landowner who leases to others

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. a person who owns and rents land such as a house, apartment, or condo.
  2. In the context of "mostly|UK": the owner or manager of a public house


person who owns and rents land such as a house, apartment, or condo
owner or manager of a public house

Extensive Definition

Landlord is the owner of a house, apartment, condominium, or real estate which is rented or leased to an individual or business, who is called a tenant (also a lessee or renter). When a juristic person is in this position the term landlord is used. Other terms include lessor and owner. The term landlady may be used in some jurisdictions for female owners, but landlord can apply to both sexes.

History of landlording

See also Tenement.
Landlording may be traced back to the Roman Empire and the manorial system (seignorialism), which began under it — peasants were bound to the land and dependent on their landlords for protection and justice. Under the feudalism such relations became widespread.

Landlord and tenant

The two parties step into relationship under the law of real estate property by signing a contract called lease. With this contract the one party, which has superior title to the property, ie the landlord, grads possession and use of it for a limited period to the other party, ie the tenant. The landlord may not be the actual owner of the property but keeping in some way the right to sub-lease.
A rental agreement, or lease, is the contract defining such terms as the price paid, penalties for late payments, the length of the rental or lease, and the amount of notice required before either the landlord or tenant cancels the agreement. In general, responsibilities are given as follow: the landlord is responsible for making repairments and property maintenance, and the tenant is responsible for keeping the property clean and safe.
Many landlords hire a property management company to take care of all the details of renting their property out to a tenant. This usually includes advertising the property and showing it to prospective tenants, and then, once rented, collecting rent from the tenant and performing repairs as needed.
In the United States, landlord-tenant disputes are primarily governed by state law (not federal law) regarding property and contracts. State law and, in some places, city law or county law, sets the requirements for eviction of a tenant. Generally, there are a limited number of reasons for which a landlord can evict his or her tenant before the expiration of the tenancy, though at the end of the lease term the rental relationship can generally be terminated without giving any reason. Some cities have laws establishing the maximum rent a landlord can charge, known as rent control, and related just cause eviction controls. There is also an implied warranty of habitability, whereby a landlord must maintain safe, decent and habitable housing, meeting minimum safety requirements such as smoke detectors and a locking door.
Sometimes the terms "slumlord" or "ghetto landlord" are used in reference to the owner of dilapidated buildings in blighted urban areas. As a result of declining demand and declining real estate prices, these landlords were often left with completely unprofitable properties and found themselves unable to pay for renovation and the regular maintenance of their property. The situation in many American slums became so dire that some landlords were convicted of arson after they arranged to have their own buildings set on fire in an attempt to collect on the insurance policy.
Aside of bad or leading to lawsuits relations between landlord and tenant, these relations as written and shown by Robert Burns (1759 - 1796) may keep warmth and mutual delight.

Licensed victualler

In the United Kingdom the owner and/or manager of a public house (pub) is also called the "landlord", "publican", or "licensee". In a more formal way the term used is licensed victualler. A female landlord can either be called a landlady or simply landlord.
A charity called the Licensed Victualler's National Homes exists to serve the retirement needs of Britain's pub landlords. The charity also runs a private boarding school, in Ascot, Berkshire, which in addition to regular fee-paying pupils, provides discounted education prices for the children of landlords and others in the catering industry.


See also

landlord in Scottish Gaelic: Uachdaran
landlord in Japanese: 地主
landlord in Russian: Помещик
landlord in Chinese: 土地主

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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