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Arkansas Tenant Rights Laws

Signing a residential lease is a huge decision, and before doing so it's a good idea to understand your legal rights and obligations as a tenant. If you are considering becoming a tenant in Arkansas, or if you are experiencing conflict with your landlord, read on to learn more about your legal rights.

Arkansas Tenants Rights Overview

Like all other states, Arkansas has laws governing the relationship between landlords and tenants. This includes provisions limiting how much a landlord can require you to pay as a security deposit and how long your landlord has to return your security deposit after you move out. Arkansas law also requires your landlord to provide a certain amount of notice before increasing your rent.

There are also some areas that Arkansas chooses not to regulate. For example, in Arkansas landlords have the right to end your tenancy at any time, even if you are a model tenant. Also, Arkansas law follows the axiom of "caveat lessee" - renter beware. This means that a tenant accepts the rental property "as is" and the law places no explicit obligation on a landlord to maintain the unit. Arkansas also doesn't recognize a tenant's right to "repair and deduct;" and if a landlord fails to make agreed-upon repairs, a tenant's only remedy is small claims court.

Statutes

Arkansas Residential Landlord-Tenant Act of 2007

Security Deposits

  • Landlord can't require more than two months' rent as security deposit
  • Security deposit or itemized list of deductions must be provided within 60 days of tenant move-out
  • A landlord that wrongfully withholds a security deposit may be liable to the tenant for twice the amount of the deposit plus court costs and attorney's fees

Paying Rent

  • Landlord must provide notice of at least one rental period before raising rent

Living Conditions

  • Typically, tenant takes rental unit "as is," and landlord is not required to make additional repairs, although landlords must comply with building and health and safety codes
  • Tenants have a right to quiet enjoyment of rental units, and it's constructive eviction for a landlord to interfere with that right
  • Tenants don't have the right to "repair and deduct," if a landlord fails to make agreed-upon repairs, tenant's remedy is small claims court

Discrimination

  • It's illegal for an Arkansas landlord to discriminate against a tenant on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, handicap, familial status or national origin

Ending or Renewing a Tenancy

  • Landlord has the right to give notice of the termination of a lease for any reason
  • Notice of the termination of a lease must be provided in conformity with a written lease, or one rent period in advance if the lease is oral
  • If tenant fails to pay rent, landlord can serve a 3 day notice to pay or quit

Retaliation

  • It's illegal for an Arkansas landlord to retaliate against a tenant for exercising legal rights, like complaining to a building or health inspector

Note: State regulations are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

Related Arkansas Tenant's Rights Resources

Get a Free Evaluation of Your Landlord/Tenant Case

If you are a tenant in Arkansas and you believe that your landlord has acted illegally, you may want to speak with a lawyer to make sure you understand your legal rights. FindLaw can help match you with an experienced landlord/tenant lawyer for your free case evaluation.

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