Legislative efforts in recent years to ensure safe and sanitary living conditions for tenants of rental properties in Arkansas have been unsuccessful. An implied warranty of habitability would offer tenants a legal avenue against landlords who fail to meet reasonable standards. Arkansas is the only state in the U.S. that has not adopted an implied warranty of habitability. This remains the case despite a legislatively established commission’s recommendation in 2012 to adopt, along with 14 other reforms, an implied warranty of habitability. The substandard housing conditions that occur in the absence of such protection affect individual and community health.
This updated explainer provides information on the hazards of substandard housing, the impact of housing on health, housing status among Arkansans, and policies designed to improve housing including implied warranty of habitability.