Renters Rights in Florida

Being the third most populous state throughout the United States, a fair set of laws have been put in place to serve both renters and property owners. Here in Florida, all residential rental laws are clarified in Chapter 83 of the Florida Statutes. Additionally, the respective rental agreement between the tenant and landlord applies.

To protect citizens of the state from discrimintation, Florida enacted what is known as the Fair Housing Act of 1968. The objective of this Act is to make sure that real estate professionals treat all tenants and clients equally. The protected categories are as follows:

  • Race
  • Color
  • National Origin
  • Familial Status
  • Religion
  • Sex
  • Mental and/or Physical Disability

This act would make it so that potential tenants are evaluated by income and employment status, not by any other factors.

Access to Dwelling

In nearly all circumstances, Florida law would require a landlord to give notice to tenants that they need to enter the dwelling. When a repair is needed, a landlord is required to give at least 12 hours of notice to the tenant before entrance. In emergency situations, Florida law reserves the right for the landlord to enter without advance notice. If these laws are violated, the tenant may be able to seek legal action.

Security Deposit 

The law in the state of Florida does not put a limit on what amount a landlord can charge a tenant for a security deposit. At first glance this may seem problematic. Let’s take it a step further and break it down; if a landlord is asking $5,000.00 for an apartment that rents out for $1,000.00 a month, he won’t ever rent it out. Usually, the landlord charges a security deposit amount of one or two months of rent.

There are specifications on how the landlord is responsible for storing the security deposit while it is in their possession. The landlord is allowed to place the security deposit in a surety bond, interest bearing account, or non-interest bearing account. If the landlord puts the security deposit into an interest bearing account the tenant is entitled to the interest.

When returning the deposit, the landlord has 15 days to inform the tenant if they are making a claim against it or not. If the tenant does make a claim on the security deposit the landlord has 30 days to inform the tenant and return the remaining funds. 

Conclusion

Are you a property owner trying to figure out what your tenant may or may not do? Do you feel that your tenant has done something they are not supposed to do? Give us a quick call to see if we could assist you with the problem you are facing. Florida holds both landlords and tenants to a fair standard. If either party does something that is not supposed to be done, it is quite clear how to take the next step. Here at FL Home Buyers we buy houses cash and we close fast. We are cash buyers and we close with or without tenants in place.