State Landlord-Tenant Laws For Arizona

Overview

DEPOSIT

  • The maximum allowable deposit is 1.5x the monthly rent.
  • Landlords have 14 days to return the deposit after move out.
  • Landlords can deduct repairs beyond normal wear and tear, unpaid rent and utilities and fees for early termination or cleaning.
  • Landlords must provide and itemized list of any deposit deductions.
  • Landlords are not required to pay interest.

RENT INCREASE LAWS

  • No rent control laws.
  • Landlords must give 30 days notice when increasing rent.

NOTICES

  • Landlords must give at least 48 hours notice before entering the premise for repairs or inspections (except in the case of an emergency).

RE-KEYING LAWS

  • No statute.

RENTAL AGREEMENT

  • Rental agreements must be in writing for leases of a year or longer.
  • It is always advisable to have a written lease, even for shorter term leases.

LATE FEES & GRACE PERIODS

  • Landlords are allowed to charge a fair late fee of $5 per day from the due date of the rent.
  • Landlords must allow a 5 day grace period.
  • Late fees must be written in the lease.

SMOKING LAWS

  • No statute.

PET LAWS

  • Pet deposits, non-refundable pet fees, and/or monthly pet premiums are allowed.

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1. Arizona Landlord-Tenant Rights and Responsibilities

Like other states in the U.S., Arizona has its own laws that guide landlord-tenant relationships. Arizona Landlord-Tenant state laws provide both the renter and rentee with certain rights and responsibilities. 

Below is an outline of some of the rights and responsibilities that landlords and tenants in Arizona enjoy.

Tenant’s Rights and Responsibilities in Arizona

Tenant’s Right

  • Tenants have the right to certain disclosures about rent, like how and when rent is due, late fines, and the procedure for raising rent. 
  • Tenants have the right to get a written notice if facing eviction.
  • Tenants have the right to withhold rent if the landlord doesn't respond to requests for repairs promptly. 
  • Tenants have the right to the peaceful enjoyment of their home and be notified before a landlord visits the space they rent. 
  • Tenants have the right to terminate a rental agreement, in cases of domestic abuse, without any legal consequences when they vacate the property. 
  • Tenants have the right to a walk-through examination to discover any of their belongings before vacating the apartment. 
  • Tenants have the right to equal and just treatment, as accorded in the Federal Fair Housing Act

Tenant’s Responsibilities 

  • Tenants are obligated to notify their landlords of any maintenance problems that arise. 
  • Tenants are obligated to notify their landlords when they intend to leave the space they rent. 
  • Tenants are obligated to follow the terms specified in the rental agreement or lease. 
  • Tenants are obligated to keep the dwelling unit's noise levels within acceptable bounds. 
  • Tenants are obligated to notify the landlord if they will be gone for an extended length of time.

Landlord’s Rights and Responsibilities in Arizona

Landlord’s Rights

  • Landlords have the right to get appropriate written notice from a tenant wishing to leave their rental property. 
  • Landlords have the right to get written notice if a tenant plans to spend a significant amount of time away from the property.
  • Landlords have the right to perform a move-out inspection, provided that it complies with state law. 
  • Landlords have the right to enter rental space to perform essential tasks, like fixing issues or displaying the apartment to potential buyers or tenants.
  • Landlords have the right to increase rent in accordance with the conditions of the lease.
  • Landlords have the right to evict tenants for breaking the terms of the lease.
  • Landlords have the right to demand a security deposit. 

Landlord’s Responsibilities

  • Landlords are obligated to ensure that their rental property complies with all applicable construction standards, safety and health regulations in the state of Arizona.
  • Landlords are obligated to make all requested or necessary repairs to the rental property in a timely manner and for a fair price.
  • Landlords are obligated to give the renter enough notice before making any changes to the rental agreement and inform them of any further changes as well.
  • Landlords are obligated to respect Arizona State Law's anti-discrimination and anti-harassment statutes. 
  • Landlords are obligated to adhere to Arizona laws when attempting to evict a tenant.
  • Landlords are obligated to respect the Fair Credit Reporting Act as well as the Fair Housing Laws department in Arizona. 
  • Landlords are obligated to manage tenants' security deposits in accordance with the provisions of the Arizona security deposit laws. 

Required Notices Before Entry in Arizona

Are landlords in Arizona required to give notice before entering the property?

Yes. In Arizona, landlords can only enter at acceptable hours, unless there is an emergency, and must give the renter two days' notice of their intention to do so. (A.R.S. § 33-1343)

Are landlords in Arizona allowed to enter the property to conduct maintenance and repairs?

Yes. In Arizona, unless there is an emergency, landlords are expected to give two days' notice before entering the property. (A.R.S. § 33-1343)

Late Fee for Rent in Arizona

If the rent is not paid by the sixth day after the due date, the landlord may impose a penalty fee, not to exceed five dollars per day from the date of the rent. (A.R.S. § 33-1414)

Source: Arizona Residential Landlord and Tenant Act, Arizona Tenants' Rights And Responsibilities Handbook

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2. Arizona Rent Increase Laws

Arizona does not currently have any rent control law in place. Additionally, local governments in Arizona are prohibited from enacting rent control legislation. This allows landlords far greater flexibility in overseeing their week-to-week or month-to-month rental agreements. (A.R.S. § 33-1329

Notices Required to Raise Rent in Arizona

Here is a brief rundown of the notice that Arizonan landlords must provide before raising rents: 

  • Month-to-month lease: Give written notice of any increase in rent at least thirty days in advance. 
  • Week-to-week tenancy: Give ten days' written notice in advance. 
  • Fixed-term lease: An increase may only be made with sufficient notice before the start of a new lease term, and only when the existing one expires. 

(A.R.S. § 33-1375)

Limitations on Arizona Rent Increase Laws

According to Arizona rent increase laws, it becomes unlawful for landlords to increase rent in Arizona if: 

  • Notice: The landlord fails to provide the necessary notice. (A.R.S. § 33-1311
  • Discrimination: There are discriminating motives behind the growth. Tenants are shielded against discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, familial status, or handicap by federal and state fair housing laws. 
  • Retaliation: Tenant exercising a legal right—such as complaining about unsafe living conditions—means the landlord is retaliating, which is why the rent has increased. (A.R.S. § 33-1381
  • Unfair Increases: Although there isn't a statewide rent regulation, increases that are excessively expensive could give rise to legal challenges and possibly be ruled unconscionable. 

Source:Guide to the Arizona Residential Landlord and Tenant Act

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2. Arizona Rental Agreement Laws

Under Arizona law, a lease is a legal document that specifies the obligations and rights of the landlord and tenant with regard to upholding a safe and healthy renting environment. 

For leases lasting one year or longer, a written rental agreement is necessary; nevertheless, most Arizonan landlords create one regardless of the length of the tenancy.

Arizona rental owners are required to provide at least thirty days' notice before making any significant changes to a month-to-month contract, including raising the rent. Unless otherwise agreed, landlords with longer leases are not allowed to make alterations until after the lease expires and the new tenancy starts. 

In order to terminate a month-to-month lease, either the tenant or the landlord must give written notice thirty days in advance of the end of the last month the tenant intends to occupy the rental property. It's crucial to remember that sublet and assignment clauses are not covered under Arizona rental legislation.

Source:Attachment 14A: Arizona Residential Lease Agreement

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4. Arizona Tenant Deposit Laws

What Is The Maximum Allowable Security Deposit In Arizona?

A.R.S. § 33-1321(a) states that a landlord in Arizona can ask a tenant for a security deposit up to one and a half months' worth of rent. This is the most that a landlord can request.

Additionally, security deposits in Arizona are refundable unless specified otherwise in the lease. However, landlords have to justify their need for such a payment. 

At the end of the lease period, the landlord is obligated to reimburse any additional payments that were not specifically mentioned. Generally speaking, cleaning and pet deposits are nonrefundable fees.

Are Pet Fees and Pet Deposits Allowed In Arizona?

In Arizona, a landlord has the option to request a pet deposit. In the event that they do, the entire deposit cannot exceed 1.5 months' worth of rent. (A.R.S. § 33-1321(a))

What Are Landlords Allowed To Deduct From The Deposit In Arizona?

Arizona Revised Statutes §33-1321 allows landlords to lawfully take money out of a tenant's security deposit for the following purposes: 

  • Unpaid Rent: The landlord may deduct unpaid rent from the tenant's security deposit if the tenant vacates the property with unpaid rent due. This covers rent from the last month the renter occupied the apartment as well as any past due or insufficient rent months.
  • Damage Beyond usual Wear and Tear: If there are any damages to the rental property that arise during the leasing period that go beyond usual wear and tear, the landlord may deduct those costs from the security deposit in order to replace or repair them. This covers items such as: some text
    • more than a nail-sized hole in the wall,
    • burns or stains on the floor appliances, or 
    • fixtures that are broken or missing harm to countertops, cabinets, doors, etc. 
  • Fees for Professional Cleaning: The landlord may deduct professional cleaning costs from the security deposit if the rental property has to be cleaned to the same standard as when the tenant moved in. General cleaning in between tenant turnover is not included in this.
  • Early termination of the lease: Terminating a contractual agreement before its term is known as breaking a rental agreement. You have the right to keep a portion of the tenant's security deposit unless they have a valid reason to end the lease.
  • Failure of the tenant to pay utilities: Before leaving, the tenant must pay off any utility bills in their name. Landlords are allowed to remove money from the tenant’s security deposit if they haven't paid these expenses.

How Must Landlords Hold Deposits In Arizona?

Landlords are not required by law to keep their renters' deposits in a specific manner. The deposit need not be kept in an interest-bearing account or at a financial institution by the landlord. 

How Long Do Landlords Have To Return Deposits in Arizona?

The landlord is required to give tenants an itemized list of all costs (if any) that they plan to deduct from the security deposit and refund the remaining amount within 14 business days after the move-out date and request for the security deposit return. (A.R.S. §§ 33-1321(D))

In the event that no forwarding address was supplied by the tenant, the landlord is expected to send the list of deductions and any sum owing to the address specified in the written request or to the tenant's last known address.

Do Landlords Need To Pay Interest on Security Deposits in Arizona?

Landlords in Arizona are not required by state law to pay interest on security deposits.

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5. Arizona Eviction Laws & Notices

Grounds for Eviction in Arizona

A landlord may lawfully evict a tenant for the reasons listed below. 

Failure to pay rent on time

According to Arizona law, the landlord is expected to give the tenant a 5-Day Notice to Pay prior to initiating the eviction procedure for nonpayment of rent. 

The eviction procedure ends if the tenant pays the rent within those five days. However, the landlord retains the authority to carry out the eviction procedure if the renter is not able to pay.

(A.R.S. § 33-1368)

Violation of the lease/rental agreement

A 10-Day Notice to Comply is required from the landlord if a tenant breaches any of the provisions of the lease. 

The eviction procedure ends if the renter promptly settles the problems. However, the landlord may proceed with the eviction if the tenants do not comply with the violations or vacate the property on schedule.

Conducting illegal activity

The landlord is required to give a formal written Arizona notice to quit if a tenant has participated in unlawful activity while occupying the property. It is up to the landlord how many days they offer a renter to leave.

Examples of illegal activities are:

  • Causing serious property damage
  • Endangering the health, welfare, and/or safety of the people in the rental property
  • Homicide
  • Involvement in the creation, distribution, or consumption of a controlled substance
  • Prostitution
  • Unlawful discharge of a weapon
  • Theft, violence, assault

Material health or safety violation

Arizona law considers building, safety, health, and housing requirements. The landlord is required to provide a 5-Day Notice to Comply to the tenant in the event that they breach any of these codes, giving them time to address the situation. 

Infractions under this could include: 

  • Causing harm to a unit's electrical wiring 
  • Long stretches of time without trash removal invite rats and/or bugs. 
  • Damaging a unit's plumbing fixtures 

Tenants must complete repairs or resolve the issue at the conclusion of the five-day period. The landlord has the right to carry out the eviction procedure if they are unable to do so.

(A.R.S. § 33-1341)

Non-renewal of the lease after the rental period ends

Landlords have the right to give a tenant a standard Arizona eviction notice to vacate the property if they do not arrange for a renewal and continue to occupy the space even after their lease or rental agreement expires.

Notice Requirements To Terminate A Lease With Cause in Arizona

A landlord must provide the tenant a standard Arizona notice to quit in writing before they can sue for eviction. The notice must provide the tenant enough time to leave the property and clearly state the reason for the termination. 

Landlords in Arizona are required to give written notice in the following circumstances:

  • Lease Termination for Nonpayment: 5 days to remedy or quit (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1368(B))
  • Termination for Lease Violation: 10 days to remedy or quit, but only 5 days notice is required for noncompliance by the tenant, if the tenant’s breach affects health and safety (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1368(A) and 33-1341)
  • Termination of Lease for Falsification of Information: 10 days notice is required if the tenant falsified a criminal record, previous eviction record, or current criminal activity. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1368(A2))
  • Immediate Lease Termination: Allowed, if tenant is responsible for illegal discharge of a weapon, homicide (see Sections 13-1102 through 13-1105), prostitution (see Section 13-3211), criminal street gang activity (see Section 13-105), activity as prohibited in Section 13-2308, the unlawful manufacturing, selling, transferring, possessing, using or storing of a controlled substance ( see Section 13-3451), threatening or intimidating (see Section 13-1202), assault (see Section 13-1203), acts that have been found to constitute a nuisance(see Section 12-991), or a breach of the lease agreement that jeopardizes the health, safety and welfare of the landlord, the landlord’s agent, or another tenant or involves imminent or actual serious property damage. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1368(A2))

Tenants must receive notices in a proper manner, such as by certified mail, hand delivery to the apartment, or posting on the property. The notice period starts the day after delivery.

Arizona Eviction Process

Every eviction in Arizona goes through the same procedure. Below is an overview of what the Arizona Eviction Process looks like.

  • Tenant receives written notification of infractions from landlord. 
  • After the landlord lodges a complaint, a summons is sent. 
  • Tenant is served by court 
  • Tenant answers 
  • The court hears arguments and renders a decision. 
  • There's a Writ of Restitution 
  • Returning possession

Source: Eviction Actions - Arizona Judicial Branch

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6. Arizona Rental Application Laws

In Arizona, there's no restriction on how much a landlord can charge for an Arizona rental application fee, which includes a tenant screening cost. Also, the questions that they ask on the application are not governed by any legislation.

However, it is imperative for landlords to explicitly specify in writing to a renter whether the application fee is refundable or not. The tenant has the opportunity to request a refund if they get rejected, and Arizona rental applications are deemed refundable if the property owner does not say otherwise. 

Furthermore, even though landlords are allowed to screen potential tenants, it's crucial to keep in mind that tenants are shielded from discrimination under the Fair Housing Act. So, asking for details like race, disability, or religion during Arizona rental applications could lead to discriminatory charges and legal issues.

Source: SB1417 - 562R - I Ver |Arizona Legislature

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7. Breaking a Lease in Arizona

While tenants in Arizona are allowed to break a lease agreement for whatever reason, there could be legal consequences for doing so. However, there are several cases where it would be legal to break a rental agreement. 

When Breaking a Lease Is Justified in Arizona 

In Arizona, tenants who satisfy one of the conditions listed below may terminate their lease legally:

Uninhabitable Unit

In Arizona, all rental properties are required to adhere to the "Safety and Health Codes." Before a new tenant moves in, the landlord is expected to ensure the rental property is in excellent shape. 

Failure of the landlord to ensure the rental unit is safe and livable is considered as the landlord breaking the terms of the lease. In this event, the tenant can break the lease agreement.

Active Military Duty

Tenants who are relocated while serving may be protected by the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act. Essentially, active service members are covered by the SCRA from the time they report for duty until 30 to 90 days following their discharge. 

Now, in Arizona, there is a specific procedure to follow in order to break a lease in this situation. 

The renter is needed to establish that they will continue to be on active service for the next ninety days in addition to delivering the written notice to their landlord as per normal. They also have to demonstrate that they signed the lease before reporting for duty. 

A signed letter from their commanding officer outlining the deployment procedure or a copy of the deployment orders must be attached by the tenants.

Remember that the renter could only be permitted to end the lease 30 days following the start of the subsequent rent period.

Early Lease Termination Clause

In Arizona, using an early lease termination clause to end a lease is thought to be the most secure course of action for both parties. Certain rental property lease agreements have explicit terms and conditions about terminating the contract early. 

Arizonan landlords usually permit tenants to terminate a lease in exchange for a sum of money that the tenant agrees to pay as a "penalty." The Arizona landlord may be able to defray part of their costs in the interim until a new tenant is found, even if the penalty might not always be sufficient to cover the entire amount of rent due.

Landlord Harassment

If a tenant can prove their landlord is harassing them or invading their privacy, they may be entitled to legally break the terms of the lease. 

Typical instances include the following: 

  • The landlord changed the property's locks without the tenant's permission, which is against the law in Arizona. 
  • The two days of written notice needed by Arizona law were not given by the landlord when they entered the property.

Domestic Violence

If a victim of domestic abuse wishes to terminate their lease early, Arizona protects them. However, they will first need to give their landlord verification of their status. 

The landlord may nevertheless demand payment from the renter to vacate the rental property if they are unable to substantiate their allegations of domestic abuse. 

Required Notices to End A Lease in Arizona 

A tenant may need to give you notice in order for you to get ready before breaking the terms of the lease lawfully. In Arizona, depending on the type of lease, your renter will have a certain amount of time to give you a written notice letter. 

Source: War and National Defense Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, Arizona Landlord-Tenant Act.

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8. HOA Laws in Arizona

Here are some of the Arizona HOA laws that govern the creation and operation of HOAs in the state.

Arizona Planned Communities Act

The Arizona Planned Communities Act regulates homeowner associations in the state and provides information on various topics related to planned communities, including the extent of assessment collection limitations, the upkeep of homeowner association records, the administration of these organizations, and meeting requirements. It is applicable to cooperatives, HOAs, and condominium associations, as well as all planned communities.

Arizona Nonprofit Corporation Act

HOAs in Arizona are governed by the Arizona Nonprofit Corporation Act with regard to their corporate structure and operations. Condo associations in Arizona may be established as unincorporated organizations, for-profit or non-profit corporations, or as both. Nonetheless, since the majority of HOAs in Arizona are nonprofit institutions, they must observe the guidelines set forth in this statute.

Arizona Civil Rights Act

There are regulations in existence in several states, including Arizona, that shield homeowners from discrimination in housing. The purpose of the Arizona Civil Rights Act was to protect citizens of Arizona from discrimination in public places, employment, and housing. 

The act's Article 7 protects people's right to housing access without being denied on the basis of their race, gender, national origin, religion, color, or family status. Additionally, the federal Fair Housing Act, which also targets discrimination, is another act that regulates HOAs in Arizona.

Arizona Real Estate Administrative Hearings

Residents of Arizona now have a venue to settle disputes outside of the court system thanks to the Arizona Real Estate Administrative Hearings Act. 

The Arizona Department of Real Estate, which has the statutory authority to arbitrate disputes between homeowners and homeowner or condominium groups, oversees the Homeowners Association Dispute Process. 

A homeowner or association may request an investigation by the department into possible violations of the organization's bylaws or papers under A.R.S. § 32-2199.01. Any party that violates the applicable law, the HOA governing papers, or a contract provision may be ordered to comply by the administrative law court overseeing the case, and any such violations may result in civil penalties.

Sources

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9. Squatters Rights in Arizona

Squatters' rights in Arizona are more intricate than in other states. The rights granted to squatters by laws in other states may not coincide with those that Arizona upholds. 

According to Arizona squatters rights laws, a squatter must meet one of the following requirements in order to successfully file a claim for adverse possession: 

  • Spend two years as a trespasser on the land.
  • Reside on the land and hold a three-year color of title.
  • For a minimum of five years in a row, occupy the property, pay property taxes, and either cultivate or not.
  • Ten years of land cultivation (without paying taxes) and habitation on the property are required. 

Five general requirements must also be fulfilled by squatters: 

  • Adverse or hostile: The squatter cannot be in possession of a current lease or rental contract with the owner. 
  • Actual: The squatter needs to have occupied the land for a specific period of time. 
  • Open and notorious: The squatter's ownership of the land is readily apparent to nearby residents and other observers. They are not attempting to live there "in secret" or cover their tracks. 
  • Exclusive: The squatter is the only one having ownership of the property. They keep others from residing there in the same manner as the owner. 
  • Continuous: Depending on the previously mentioned conditions, the squatter must possess the land continuously and unhindered for two to ten years.

Source: (ARS § 12-52212-526)

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10. Arizona Landlord Tenant Legal Resources

Below, you’ll find some helpful Arizona landlord–tenant law resources:

Documents and Forms

Additional Legal Resources For Arizona

DISCLAIMER: This article is designed to convey information, and not to provide legal advice. You should not consider any information in this article to be legal advice. Readers should consider obtaining specific legal advice from an attorney for any decision or course of action contemplated.