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Maryland Leases and Rental Agreements Laws

You may be renting an apartment in Baltimore and can’t get your air conditioning fixed. Or you’re a landlord in College Park with some unruly Terps in your house. Either way, knowing how Maryland’s landlord-tenant regulations work can save you from a quite a few headaches. This is a brief summary of leases and rental agreements laws in Maryland.

Leases and Rental Agreement Law

States may write their lease and rental agreement laws a little differently, but they all regulate the landlord-tenant relationship in generally the same way. Among other things, these laws will lay out what to do when a lease runs out and how to avoid (or prosecute a claim of) housing discrimination. Some states have more protective tenant rights laws that can pertain to disputes regarding altering the premises, notice, and evictions.

Leases and Rental Agreements in Maryland

Landlord-tenant laws differ from state to state. Maryland’s code regarding leases and rental agreement caps security deposits at two months’ rent, and requires the landlord to return interest at a rate of 4% per year. Lease and rental agreements laws in Maryland are highlighted in the chart below.

Code Section

Real Prop. 8-203, 402; MD Code (1957) Art 49B §19, et seq.

Terms of Leases

Holdover tenancy becomes week-to-week if weekly before and month-to-month in all other cases

Deposits

Limit 2 months rent; interest on deposit required at 4% simple interest per year; landlord must return deposit within 45 days of termination

Discrimination

No discrimination on basis of race, religion, color, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, marital status, handicap. If owner maintains personal residence in dwelling which has 5 or less units, owner may discriminate on sex or marital status. May rent to elderly exclusively only if dwelling planned specifically for specified age group

Uniform Residential Landlord & Tenant Act Adopted?

No

Once a Maryland lease expires, the holdover tenancy becomes a month-to-month lease, unless it was originally on a week-to-week basis. Landlords are required to provide one month notice before repossessing the premises.

Related Resources for Leases and Rental Agreements Laws

State real estate laws can be difficult to understand and can change over time. If you would like to understand your rights and responsibilities under Maryland’s leases and rental agreements laws, or discuss a lease or rental agreement matter, you can contact a Maryland landlord-tenant attorney. You can also visit FindLaw’s Leases and Rental Agreements section for more articles and resources on this topic.

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