Mississippi Tenant Rights Laws

Although renters don't have to worry about major responsibilities like property taxes and large renovation projects, there are still plenty of frustrating issues that can come up throughout the landlord-tenant relationship. To deal with many of these issues, Mississippi has a number of laws regarding renters’ rights and responsibilities, in addition to federal and local laws. Read on to learn more about Mississippi's tenant rights laws.

Tenant Rights: Discrimination to Termination

In Mississippi, landlords are not allowed to discriminate based on protected characteristics such as race, familial status, or disability. Acts of discrimination include refusing to rent to someone, offering discriminatory terms or conditions, and misrepresenting the availability of a unit based on a protected trait.

During your tenancy, your landlord is also required to maintain the premises in a habitable condition. This means they must, among other things, comply with building and housing codes materially affecting health and safety, and maintain the unit in substantially the same condition it was in at the start of the lease. However, you and your landlord can agree in writing that you will take on specified responsibilities instead.

While there is no state maximum regarding the security deposit your landlord can charge you, the state does place other restrictions on how they are handled. For example, your landlord only has 45 days to return the deposit to you, along with an itemized list of deductions taken out for things like unpaid rent and cleaning costs.

Even though Mississippi provides protections and guidelines for the rental process, tenants are sometimes hesitant to assert their rights. Therefore, it's also important to note that your landlord may not retaliate against you by raising the rent or evicting you simply because you requested repairs or complained about certain code violations.

Mississippi Tenant Rights Laws at a Glance

The chart below provides a summary of Mississippi state laws governing the landlord-tenant relationship, including links to important code sections.

Statutes

Security Deposits

  • Limit: No statutory maximum
  • Must return all or part of the security deposit within 45 days along with itemized amounts for any deductions taken
  • Part or all may be used for:
    • Damages beyond ordinary wear and tear
    • Unpaid rent
    • Cleaning costs
    • Expenses incurred by tenant’s breach of rental agreement

Paying Rent

  • May not raise rent during lease term (e.g. 1 year lease) unless lease allows; may raise rent upon lease renewal

Living Conditions

  • Landlord’s right to enter unit governed by terms of rental agreement
  • Landlord must maintain premises in habitable condition: comply with housing codes, maintain plumbing, heating and/or cooling system, except where damage caused by deliberate or negligent actions by tenant
  • Landlord and tenant may agree to other repair and maintenance terms if agreed to in good faith

Discrimination

  • No discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, familial status, national origin, or disability

Ending or Renewing a Tenancy

  • Notice required to terminate the tenancy:
    • Yearly: two months
    • Monthly tenancy: 30 days
    • Week-to-week tenancy: seven days
    • Fixed-term lease: no notice required
    • Eviction: three days for failure to pay rent; 30 days for other lease violations
  • Eviction: court order required

Retaliation

  • Landlord may not retaliate against tenant for exercising tenant rights

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.

Mississippi Tenant Rights Laws: Related Resources

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