A summary of Florida Landlord Tenant Laws based on state law statutes as they apply to residential lease agreements executed between landlords and tenants.
Required Disclosures (by Landlords)
The landlord, or a person authorized to enter into a rental agreement on the landlord’s behalf, must disclose in writing to the tenant, at or before the commencement of the tenancy, the name and address of the landlord or a person authorized to receive notices and demands on the landlord’s behalf. (Fla. Stat. Ann. § 83.50)
Landlord must tell new tenants about the availability of fire protection in a building over three stories high. (Fla. Stat. Ann. § 83.50)
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.” (Fla. Stat. Ann. § 404.056)
Within 30 days of receiving the security deposit, the landlord must disclose in writing whether it will be held in an interest- or non-interest-bearing account; the name of the account depository; and the rate and time of interest payments. Landlord who collects a deposit must include a copy of Florida Statutes § 83.49(3) in the lease. (Fla. Stat. Ann. §§ 83.49, 83.43 (12))
Security Deposit Limit
There’s no statutory limit on security deposits.
Deadline for Returning Security Deposit
After the tenant vacates, deposits must be returned within 15 to 60 days depending on whether the tenant disputes any deductions taken out of the security deposit. Therefore, advance notice of any deductions must be given.
Small Claims Lawsuits
Landlord-Tenant disputes of a monetary value less than $5,000 may be filed in small claims court.
There’s no statute in Florida covering late fees. Therefore, a late fee can only be assessed if it’s written in the lease.
Month-to-month leases may be increased with a 15 day notice. Longer term leases are typically executed at a fixed rate and cannot be changed. Therefore, any increase would have to be written into the lease ahead of time unless both parties agree to modify the agreement.
Retaliation or Discrimination
No month-to-month increase can occur if it is deemed to be discriminatory or retaliatory.
Tenant’s Right to Withhold Rent
In order to withhold rent, the tenant must serve the landlord, in the manner prescribed by s. 83.20(3), with a written notice declaring the premises to be wholly untenantable, giving the landlord at least 20 days to make the specifically described repair or maintenance, and stating that the tenant will withhold the rent for the next rental period and thereafter until the repair or maintenance has been performed.
Termination and Eviction
An unconditional notice to quit within seven days may be served for intentional destruction of the rental property or other tenants’ property or unreasonable disturbances; repeated violations of the lease within a 12-month period. Conditional cure or quit notices are used for less substantial lease violations, allowing sevens days to correct the violation.
Access to Property
A 12 hour notice of entry is required.
Court may grant the petitioner exclusive possession of the dwelling and exclude respondent.
Florida Lease Agreement
Florida Landlord-Tenant Law Statutes
Florida Stat. Ann. §§ 83.40 to 83.682.