Maryland Landlord Tenant Law: What You Need To Know
Maryland landlord tenant laws cover a variety of issues, from lead paint hazards to evictions to the initial application process. Here are some of the key points of this law that you're going to want to know.
1. Landlords Can Keep Application Fees Of $25 Or Less.
If you submit an application for a rental property, but then find a different place you like better afterward, a fee of $25 or less on the first application can be kept by that landlord. For fees above $25, landlords are required to refund any amount not spent on the processing of the application within 15 days of moving in or refusing the rental.
2. Verbal Leases Are Allowed When The Term Is Less Than 1 Year.
Although written leases are highly recommended, verbal leases are still considered binding in Maryland when the term of the lease is for less than 12 months. It is a good idea to have witnesses present for both parties to have a verbal lease be enforced.
3. Renters Have Certain Rights Under The Law.
Renters cannot authorize a confessed judgment through a lease. Late penalties for overdue rent cannot exceed 5% of the amount that is owed. If rent is paid weekly, then the highest fee allowed is $3 per week. Landlords cannot take property without a court judgment and must provide a 30 day notice for lease termination.
4. An Advance Copy Of a Lease Is Permitted.
Prospective tenants in Maryland have the right to request a written copy of a lease before deciding to rent. It must include all the terms which will be agreed upon.
5. Tenants Must Be Given a Receipt For Their Security Deposit.
Landlords who fail to provide their tenant with a receipt after a security deposit is paid must pay a $25 penalty. Any security deposit above $50 also requires interest to be paid on it by the landlord every 6 months based on published rates from the state. Security deposits must also be returned within 45 days of moving out.
These key points are intended to answer common questions about Maryland's landlord tenant law. For other answers to your specific situation, be sure to consult with the specific state statutes which govern your situation.
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