Property owners in the state of Virginia cannot charge more than $50 as an application fee. Property owners in the state of Virginia are also limited in the amount of the security deposit they can collect, which is up to two months rent. The security deposit can be used to protect themselves from unpaid rent, damages incurred to their property, unpaid utility bills, and more. To learn more about the security deposit regulations in the state of Virginia, 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?
Property owners operating in the state of Virginia may charge an application fee of up to $50.
What is the security deposit amount the landlord can collect?
Property owners operating in the state of Virginia can collect a security deposit of up to two months rent in order to protect themselves from unpaid rent and damages incurred to their property.
Can the property manager/owner collect a fee for pets?
A pet deposit separate from the apartment security deposit is allowed in the state of Virginia. The pet security deposit may only be used for damages directly related to or caused by the pet. Service pets are an exemption, and disabled persons with service pets do not have to pay an additional security deposit. The pet deposit must be accounted for separately from the rental security deposit.
How does the security deposit need to be held?
There is no regulation in the state of Virginia regarding how property owners must hold the security deposit.
Is the property manager/owner required to tell the resident where the deposit is held?
No. Property owners in the state of Virginia are not required to tell residents where their security 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 Virginia are not required to tell residents what the interest rate on their account is.
What can the property manager/owner deduct from the security deposit?
Property owners operating in the state of Virginia can use a security deposit in order to cover unpaid rent, unpaid utility bills, damages resulting from the residents failure to comply with their obligations as tenants, So long as those damages exceed normal wear and tear, damages resulting from breach of the rental agreement, or other charges listed in the rental agreement.
How long does the property manager/owner have to return the security deposit after the lease has ended?
Property owners operating in the state of Virginia have up to 45 days from the end of the lease to return the security deposit, or its remainder, if applicable, to the vacating renter. In the event that the property owner claims funds from a security deposit, they must provide an itemized list of deductions together with the remainder of the security deposit, if applicable.
What penalties does the property manager/owner face if they do not return the security deposit on time?
If a property owner in the state of Virginia does not return the security deposit, or its remainder, within the 45 days allotted by Virginia law, the property owner may be liable for returning the entire security deposit to the vacating renter, plus reasonable attorney’s fees. Vacating renters may also sue property owners in the state of Virginia small claims court for up to $5000.
What is the process for the property manager/owner to claim the security deposit funds?
Property owners in the state of Virginia that want to claim the security deposit funds, or a portion of it, must provide vacating renter with an itemized list of the deductions within 45 days. Vacating renters have the right to be at an exit inspection. the exit inspection must be performed within 72 hours of the vacating renter moving out of the rental property. Following the inspection, the property owner must provide the vacating renter with the itemized list of damages found during the inspection. In the event that a property owner finds additional damages following the exit inspection, the vacating resident may use the itemized list of damages to dispute those damages. The property owner must deliver the itemized list of deductions personally, or via mail to the vacating renters forwarding address within the allotted time. In the event that the vacating resident did not provide the property owner with a forwarding address, the property owner must keep the security deposit for one year From the end of the 45 day allotment period. After one year, the vacating resident forfeits their right to security deposit.
Is the resident allowed to apply their security deposit towards the last month’s rent?
It is not common for property owners to accept the security deposit as the last months rent in the state of Virginia. However, If the property owner and vacating renter agree to it in writing in the lease agreement, it is permitted.
To summarize, property owners in the state of Virginia have clearly outlined regulations regarding how they must return the security deposit, and what they must provide the vacating residents with. It is important for property owners in the state of Virginia to inform their vacating residents of their right to be present for the exit inspection. Additionally, it is important that the property owners keep accurate records of damages incurred to their property and provide this information to the vacating renters within the allotted time in order to avoid legal ramifications.
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.