Property owners in the state of Rhode Island have straightforward and clear legislation regarding how much they can charge residents as a security deposit in order to protect themselves from unpaid rent and damages to their property. Rhode Island regulation also enables property owners who rent out furnished units to charge an additional security deposit. To learn more about security deposit regulations for rental properties in the state of Rhode Island, continue reading below.
Is there a limit on how much the property manager/owner can charge for an application fee? If so, what is that amount?
There is no limit on how much a property manager can charge for an application fee in the state of Rhode Island.
What is the security deposit amount the landlord can collect?
Property owners in the state of Rhode Island may request a security deposit of up to one month’s rent in order to protect their property in the event of damages or unpaid rents. In the event that a property owner is renting out a furnished apartment, and the furniture exceeds $5000 in value, property owners may collect an additional months deposit for the furniture.
Can the property manager/owner collect a fee for pets?
Yes. Property owners in Rhode Island may collect a pet deposit separate from the apartment security deposit. Service pets are an exemption, and disabled persons with service pets do not have to pay an additional security deposit. However, if a service dog causes damages, the resident is still liable for expenses incurred.
How does the security deposit need to be held?
There is no regulation in the state of Rhode Island regarding how security deposits must be held.
Is the property manager/owner required to tell the resident where the deposit is held?
No. Property owners in the state of Rhode Island are not required to tell residents where their deposit is held.
Is the property manager/owner required to tell the resident what the interest rate on the account is (if applicable)?
No. Property owners in the state of Rhode Island are not required to tell residents what the interest rate on the account is, if applicable.
What can the property manager/owner deduct from the security deposit?
Property owners operating in the state of Rhode Island may keep a portion of security deposit to cover unpaid rent, damages that exceed normal wear and tear, trash disposal, cleaning costs, or other charges as long as they are clearly outlined in the lease agreement.
How long does the property manager/owner have to return the security deposit after the lease has ended?
In the state of Rhode Island, the security deposit, or its remainder (after additional costs have been incurred, if applicable) must be returned to the renter within 20 days from the renter vacating the property alongside an itemized list of deductions, if applicable.
What penalties does the property manager/owner face if they do not return the security deposit on time?
A renter from the state of Rhode Island who does not receive their security deposit within the 20 days allotted, alongside an itemized list of the damages deducted, may recover double the full security deposit amount as well as additional legal fees spent in order to recover the funds in court. Vacating renters who do not receive their security deposit may sue the property owner in small claims court for up to $2500.
What is the process for the property manager/owner to claim the security deposit funds?
Property owners in the state of Rhode Island must provide an itemized list of damages and deductions to the vacating resident within 20 days. Property owners must send this in writing to the residents forwarding address.
Is the resident allowed to apply their security deposit towards the last month’s rent?
Residents in the state of Rhode Island may apply their security deposit towards the last month’s rent if the resident and property owner agreed to it in writing in the lease agreement.
To summarize, property owners in the state of Rhode Island have clear regulations regarding how long they have to return the security deposit, or its remainder, if applicable, and what they must provide vacating renters with. In order to ensure they are not subject to legal action from the vacating resident, property owners should keep accurate records of damages incurred to their property and provide that information in writing to the vacating residents forwarding address.
Disclaimer & Sources:
Qira aims to keep this information as up-to-date as possible. The content provided here is for informational purposes and should not replace legal counsel. Please refer to the relevant government sources to check for any changes or updates to the law.