Landlords and property managers are required to follow their federal, state and local laws about informing tenants of policies, facts, and rules about the property.
Any information that is shared with a renter about the property or a renter’s rights are considered disclosures. Landlord disclosures can either be included in the lease or rental agreement, or some other form of writing, and are typically shared with the tenant prior to move in.
Federal disclosures include informing a tenant of any lead-based paint hazards to tenants, under Title X, for any property that was built before 1978.
Other disclosures are dictated by state and local laws. Some state requirements are as simple as informing your tenant who owns the property, while other states have more than 10 required disclosures that must be shared with a tenant before they move in.
State laws will also dictate how the disclosure needs to be communicated with your renters. It can involve using a state produced notice that both the landlord and renter need to sign. Or it could include a simple line item in a lease agreement that your renter needs to initial. Because the requirements vary by state, it is important to have your lease agreement looked over by landlord-tenant attorney in your state to make sure you are including all required disclosures correctly.
Failure to follow state, federal and local requirements regarding disclosures can result in fines for the violations and potential legal or financial problems.
According to Nolo, the following states do not have any requirements regarding landlord disclosures. You should still check out any required disclosures on the local level, and never forget the lead-based paint disclosure.
States without landlord disclosure requirements: Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Vermont.
LANDLORD DISCLOSURES BY STATE
Here is a look at some of the common landlord disclosures in other states across the U.S.. Check out the state code following each disclosure to learn more and reference the requirement. Not every state disclosure was included in this list, check with your state’s landlord tenant laws for the complete list of landlord disclosure requirements.
ALASKA LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Alaska*.
Owner or agent identity. A landlord must disclose the name and address of the person authorized to manage the property to the tenant in writing. They are further required to disclose an owner of the property or a person authorized to act on their behalf.
Security deposit. A landlord must provide written notice mailed to a tenant that itemizes damages and security deposit deductions upon vacancy.
ARIZONA LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Arizona*.
Nonrefundable fees. Arizona landlords must disclose the purpose of all nonrefundable fees or deposits, like a security deposit or pet fee. If a fee or deposit is designated as nonrefundable is refundable.
Move-in checklist. Landlords must give a tenant written notification that they are allowed to be present at the move-out inspection.
Utility Charges. If a landlord charges separately for utility services (ie gas, water, electricity, etc.), the rental agreement must include a disclosure that lists the utility services that are charged separately and shall specify any administration fee associated with the utility billing system.
Bedbug Disclosures. Landlords must provide educational materials about bedbugs to new and existing tenants, including information on bedbugs and how to prevent and control bedbugs.
CALIFORNIA LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in California*.
Murders/Death: Landlords and property managers must tell prospective tenants if a prior occupant died in the rental unit within the past three years.
Registered sexual offender database: Landlords are required to include the following language in every rental agreement or lease: “Notice: Pursuant to Section 290.46 of the Penal Code, information about specified registered sex offenders is made available to the public via an Internet Web site maintained by the Department of Justice at www.meganslaw.ca.gov. Depending on an offender’s criminal history, this information will include either the address at which the offender resides or the community of residence and ZIP Code in which he or she resides.”
Former Military Ordnance Location: The landlord of a residential dwelling unit who has actual knowledge of any former federal or state ordnance locations in the neighborhood area shall give written notice to a prospective tenant of that knowledge prior to the execution of a rental agreement. In cases of tenancies in existence on January 1, 1990, this written notice shall be given to tenants as soon as practicable thereafter.
Mold: Landlord must disclose, prior to lease signing, knowledge of any mold in the dwelling that exceeds safety limits or poses a health concern. Landlord must distribute a State Department of Health Services consumer handbook once it is developed and approved.
Pest Control: Landlords must provide notice to tenants regarding the use of pest control on the structure by a registered structural pest control company pursuant to Section 8538 of the Business and Professions Code, if a contract for periodic pest control service has been executed and provide notice prior to each application.
Demolition Permit: A property owner must inform all current or future tenants when he has applied for a demolition permit. He must give written notice to prospective tenants before entering into a rental agreement with the tenant. The notice must state the earliest approximate dates that the owner expects the demolition to occur and that the tenancy will end.
Methamphetamine Contamination: If a property is found to be contaminated with methamphetamine, a local health officer must issue an order prohibiting the use or occupancy of the property to the property owner and all occupants. The owner must give written notice of the health officer’s order and a copy of it to potential tenants who have completed an application to rent the contaminated property. A tenant may cancel their rental agreement if the owner does not meet these requirements.
CONNECTICUT LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Connecticut*.
Common interest community. If a rental is located in a common interest community, the landlord must disclose to the tenant in writing that the unit is located in a common interest community.
Summary of Landlord-Tenant code. A summary of the code, as prepared by the Consumer Protection Unit of the Attorney General’s office, must be given to tenants at the beginning of the rental term. Failure to do so enables the tenant to plead ignorance of the law as a defense.
FLORIDA LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Florida*.
Fire protection. Landlord must tell new tenants about the availability of fire protection in a building over three stories high.
Radon. All rental lease agreements must include the following warning:In all leases, landlord must include this warning: “RADON GAS: Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas that, when it has accumulated in a building in sufficient quantities, may present health risks to persons who are exposed to it over time. Levels of radon that exceed federal and state guidelines have been found in buildings in Florida. Additional information regarding radon and radon testing may be obtained from your county health department.”
Landlord identity. The landlord, or a person authorized to enter into a rental agreement on the landlord’s behalf, must disclose in writing to the tenant the name and address of the landlord or a person authorized to receive notices and demands on the landlord’s behalf.
GEORGIA LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Georgia*.
Flooding. Owners are required to notify possible tenants, prior to the signing of the lease, if the property has a propensity for flooding. If flooding has damaged any portion of the rented living space three times during the preceding five-year period, the owner must give the tenant written notice that the apartment is prone to flooding before the lease is signed.
Murder/Death. Owners and their agents are required to respond truthfully if they are asked direct questions about the property’s past. The law directs owners, or an owner’s agent, in a real estate transaction to answer truthfully to the best of their knowledge if asked about the property’s prior occupancy by a diseased person or whether the property was the site of a homicide, felony, suicide, or a death by accidental or natural causes.
Prior Damage. Before issuing a security deposit, the tenant must receive a detailed list of any existing damage to the property. The tenant also has the right to inspect the premises to determine the accuracy of the list of damages. The move-in inspection paperwork must be signed by both tenant and landlord.
HAWAII LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Hawaii*.
Tax excise number. Tenants are entitled to know the landlord’s tax excise number in order to file for a low-income tax credit.
ILLINOIS LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Illinois
Security Deposits. In Chicago, the Chicago Residential Landlord Tenant Ordinance requires that landlords notify their tenants in writing where the security deposit is being held.
IOWA LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Iowa*.
Environmental. The landlord must disclose to each tenant, in writing before the commencement of the tenancy, whether the property is listed in the comprehensive environmental response compensation and liability information system maintained by the federal Environmental Protection Agency.
KENTUCKY LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Kentucky*.
Security deposit. Tenants shall be informed of the location and the account number where their security deposit funds are being held during tenancy.
MAINE LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Maine*.
Energy efficiency. Before any applicant enters into a lease agreement or pays a deposit the landlord must provide a residential energy efficiency disclosure statement and both the landlord and tenant must sign the statement. The provided statement must be in accordance with Title 35-A, section 10006, subsection 1, and include, but not be limited to, information about the energy efficiency of the property. The signed statement must be kept by the landlord for 7 years.
Radon. Landlords must test their properties for radon. The results of this test must be disclosed to current and potential tenants along with the dates of the test and the potential health risks associated with radon. Landlords must use a disclosure form prepared by the Department of Health and Human Services and have their tenants sign the statement acknowledging that it was received.
Bedbug information. If any adjacent unit(s) are currently infested with or being treated for bedbugs, a landlord must disclose this to a prospective tenant before renting any dwelling. If a tenant or prospective tenant requests, the landlord must disclose the last date that the unit or units adjacent to the unit received an inspection for a bedbug infestation and was found to be all clear.
Smoking policy. Landlords must provide tenants with written information stating whether smoking is prohibited on the premises, allowed in certain areas of the premises or allowed in all areas of the premises. This notice must specify where the allowed areas are located. The disclosure must be in the lease or a separate written notice, and the landlord is required to disclose this information before tenant signs a lease or pays a deposit. The landlord also must obtain a written acknowledgment of notification from the tenant.
MARYLAND LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Maryland*.
Move-in and move-out inspections. Landlords must supply prospective tenants with a receipt that details tenants’ rights to move-in and move-out inspections, as well as, information about how the security deposit will be handled and the tenants rights to receive an itemized list of deposit deductions if any occur; the receipt must also detail the penalties for landlord should he or she fail to comply.
MASSACHUSETTS LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Massachusetts.
Insurance. At the tenants request, a landlord has 15 days to supply the name of the property’s insurance company and verification of the amount of coverage against loss or damage by fire. The landlord must also disclose the name of an person who would receive payment for such a loss as is covered by the insurance.
MICHIGAN LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Michigan*.
Truth in Renting Act. All rental agreements must prominently state “NOTICE: Michigan law establishes rights and obligations for parties to rental agreements. This agreement is required to comply with the Truth in Renting Act. If you have a question about the interpretation or legality of a provision of this agreement, you may want to seek assistance from a lawyer or other qualified person.” This notice must be no smaller than size 12-point type, or be in legible print with letters not smaller than 1/8 inch.
Rights of domestic violence victims. A rental agreement or lease may contain a provision stating, “A tenant who has a reasonable apprehension of present danger to him or her or his or her child from domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking may have special statutory rights to seek a release of rental obligation under MCL 554.601b.” If the rental agreement or lease doesn’t have this stated, the landlord must post the provision (in a place visible to a reasonable person) within the landlord’s property management office, or the written statement must be delivered to the tenant when the lease or rental agreement is signed.
MINNESOTA LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Minnesota*.
Habituality. A landlord must disclose any outstanding inspection orders, condemnation orders or declarations that a property is unfit prior to a tenant signing a lease or paying a security deposit.
Foreclosures. If a landlord has received a notice of foreclosure, he must disclose to a prospective tenant in writing hat the landlord has received notice of a contract for deed cancellation or notice of a mortgage foreclosure sale as appropriate, and the date on which the contract cancellation period or the mortgagor’s redemption period ends, before entering into a tenancy term.
NEVADA LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Nevada*.
Nuisance and flying the flag. Lease must include a summary of the provisions regarding penalties for permitting and maintaining a nuisance (NRS 202.470) and information regarding the right of the tenant to engage in the display of the flag of the United States, as set forth in NRS 118A.325.
Emergency Telephone. Before the start of tenancy, the landlord must disclose to the tenant a telephone number at which a responsible person who resides in the county or within 60 miles of where the premises are located may be called in case of emergency.
Foreclosure proceedings. Landlord must disclose to any prospective tenant, in writing, whether the premises to be rented is the subject of a foreclosure proceeding.
Sale or Transfer of property. Upon of a dwelling unit by a landlord (whether by sale, death, or other reason), the landlord must notify the tenant of the landlord’s new successor and whether the security deposit has been transferred or will be returned. Additionally, the landlord must notify the successor that the tenant’s security deposit has either been transferred to the successor or fully returned to the tenant.
NEW JERSEY LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in New Jersey*.
Flood zone. Prior to move-in, landlord must inform tenant if rental is in a flood zone or area.
Truth in Renting Act. Every landlord shall distribute one copy of the statement, referred to as the Truth in Renting Act, regarding the legal rights and responsibilities of tenants and landlords of rental dwelling units.
Child protection window guards. New Jersey landlords are required to notify residents of their right to request window guards twice a year.
NEW YORK LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in New Jersey*.
New York has a state-wide requirement that a landlord disclose details about the security deposit if the property is transferred to a new owner.
OREGON LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Oregon*.
Flooding: If a dwelling unit is located in a 100-year floodplain, the landlord shall provide notice in the dwelling unit rental agreement that the dwelling unit is located within the floodplain.
PENNSYLVANIA LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Power to distrain for rent. If personal property is held in distress for any rent reserved and due by the landlord or manager, notice in writing of such distress, stating the cause for taking, the date of levy and the personal property distrained shall be given to the tenant or owner within 5 days after making the distress.
RHODE ISLAND LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Rhode Island*.
Code violations. Landlords are required to notify tenants of any code violations the property received, if the issue has not been remedied in 30 days.
Foreclosure. If the landlord becomes delinquent on the mortgage for more than 120 days, he must notify the tenant that the property may be subject to foreclosure.
SOUTH CAROLINA LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in South Carolina*.
Unequal security deposits. If a landlord rents more than four adjoining units and collects different security deposit amounts for each unit, the landlord must post in a conspicuous place a statement explaining the standards by which the various deposits are calculated or provide each tenant with a written statement.
SOUTH DAKOTA LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in South Dakota*.
Meth labs. If a landlord has any prior knowledge of the existence of meth manufacturing at the property, he is required to disclose the information to the tenant or prospective tenant.
TEXAS LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Texas*.
Ownership and management. A landlord shall disclose to a tenant, the name and address of the holder of the record title. The information must be disclosed in writing within seven days of a tenant’s request and the information must be continuously posted in a conspicuous place in the dwelling or the office of the on-site manage. The information must also be included in the lease agreement.
Security device requests. A landlord can require that all tenant requests concerning security devices to be in writing, if the requirement is in the lease in boldface type or underlined.
Return of the security deposit. A landlord can require that all tenants provide advanced noticed of moving out in order as a condition of receiving a security deposit refund, if the condition is in the lease, underlined or printed in conspicuous bold print.
Tenant Screening Criteria. A landlord must make a printed notice of the landlord’s tenant selection criteria available to the tenant if requested, including the grounds for which a rental application may be denied. If the notice is made available, the tenant has to sign the notice indicating acknowledgment of its availability. The acknowledgment must include a statement substantively equivalent to the following: “Signing this acknowledgment indicates that you have had the opportunity to review the landlord’s tenant selection criteria. The tenant selection criteria may include factors such as criminal history, credit history, current income, and rental history. If you do not meet the selection criteria, or if you provide inaccurate or incomplete information, your application may be rejected and your application fee will not be refunded.”
Failure to make repairs. A lease must contain language in underlined or bold print that informs the tenant of the remedies available when the landlord fails to make a repair.
Landlord’s towing or parking rules and policies. In multi-unit properties, the landlord must provide a statement to the tenant regarding the properties, parking and towing rules and policies. The statement must be signed by the tenant or included in the signed lease agreement. If the parking rules are included in the lease agreement, the the title to the paragraph containing the rules or policies must read “Parking” or “Parking Rules” and be capitalized, underlined, or printed in bold print.
Electric service interruption. If a tenant pays a landlord for electricity or utility and the tenant fails to pay, the landlord may interrupt the service for non-payment if certain notices and statements are issued. Refer to the specific Texas statute referenced here for more details about how to legally interrupt utility services.
Transfer of ownership. If the owner’s interest in the property is terminated by sale, assignment, death, appointment of a receiver, bankruptcy, or otherwise, the new owner will assume liability of the security deposit and the new owner is required to notify the tenant about the transfer of the security deposit and the amount.
VIRGINIA LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Virginia*.
Military zone. If a property is located in a military air installation zone, a landlord must provide a prospective tenant with a written disclosure that the property is located in a noise zone or accident potential zone.
Mold. As part of the written report of the move-in inspection required by § 55-248.11:1, the landlord shall disclose whether there is any visible evidence of mold in areas readily accessible within the interior of the dwelling unit.
Condominium plans. If an application for registration of the rental property as a condominium or cooperative has been filed with the Real Estate Board, or if there is within six months an existing plan for tenant displacement resulting from (i) demolition or substantial rehabilitation of the property or (ii) conversion of the rental property to office, hotel or motel use or planned unit development, then the landlord or any person authorized to enter into a rental agreement on his behalf shall disclose that information in writing to any prospective tenant.)
Defective drywall. If a landlord is aware of the existence of defective drywall in a rental property, the landlord shall disclose the knowledge to a prospective tenant in a written disclosure.
Meth. If the landlord of a residential dwelling unit has actual knowledge that the dwelling unit was previously used to manufacture methamphetamine and has not been cleaned up in accordance with the guidelines established pursuant to § 32.1-11.7 and the applicable licensing provisions of Chapter 11 (§ 54.1-1100 et seq.) of Title 54.1, the landlord shall provide to a prospective tenant a written disclosure that so states.
WASHINGTON LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Washington*.
Screening criteria. A landlord must disclose, in writing or by posting, the type of information that will be accessed for tenant screening, the criteria that could result in a denial, if a consumer report is used and which agency will provide the report.
Mold. Landlords must give tenants information provided by the department of health about the health hazards associated with exposure to indoor mold and how tenants can control mold growth in their homes. The information can be given to each tenant or posted in a visible, public location on the property.
WISCONSIN LANDLORD DISCLOSURES
Here is a look at some of the landlord disclosures required in Wisconsin*.
Nonstandard rental provisions. If landlord wants to enter a rental property for a reason not listed under Wis. Admin. Code §134.09, the landlord must disclose the provision in a separate written document entitled “NONSTANDARD RENTAL PROVISIONS” before the rental agreement is signed. The landlord shall specifically identify and discuss the nonstandard provision with the tenant before the tenant enters into any rental agreement with the landlord. If the tenant signs or initials the nonstandard rental provision, it is rebuttably presumed that the landlord has specifically identified and discussed that nonstandard provision with the tenant, and that the tenant has agreed to it.
Habitability deficiencies. If a property lacks features that negatively impact the habitability, like hot or cold running water, heating facilities, electricity, or plumbing, the landlord must disclose these issue to a prospective tenant prior to entering into a rental agreement or accepting any money.
Code violations. Before signing a rental contract or accepting a security deposit, a landlord must disclose any knowledge of uncorrected code violations of the property.
Additional fees. A landlord must disclose the existence of any non-rent charges which will increase the total amount payable by the tenant during tenancy.