Connecticut Landlord Tenant Laws
January 31, 2023
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|Required Disclosures |
Security deposit receipt
Common interest communities
Fire sprinkler system
Rent and Fees
Application Fees: Permitted
Rent Control: Banned
Late Fee Limit: Reasonable
Grace Period Minimum: 9 days
Amount Limit: 2 months’ rent
Return Within: 30 days
Permitted Times of Entry: Reasonable
|Fair Housing Protections |
Source of income
Rent Demand Notice: 3-day pay-or-quit notice
Notice for Lease Violation: 15-day cure-or-quit notice
Unconditional Notice to Quit: 15-day quit notice
Connecticut Landlord-Tenant Law
Understand the essential Connecticut landlord tenant state laws before enforcing your own rental policies. Find more information in the Connecticut state law code.
Landlords in all 50 states must include information about lead-based paint hazards in the rental agreements for most properties built before 1978. Sellers and landlords must distribute an EPA-approved information pamphlet called “Protect Your Family from Lead in Your Home” and disclose any known lead hazards in the property. These obligations were established by Section 1018 of the Residential Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Act of 1992.
All Connecticut landlords must disclose in writing the name and address of the person authorized to manage the premises and receive notices or demands from all tenants.
Security Deposit Receipt
Landlords must provide a written notice specifying the amount of a Connecticut security deposit and the name and address of the financial institution where the deposit is being held. This notice must be delivered to the tenant no later than 30 days after the landlord receives the deposit.
Common Interest Communities
If the dwelling unit is located within a common interest community, the landlord must provide the tenant with a written notice of this fact before entering into a rental agreement.
Fire Sprinkler System
If the rented unit is in a building required to be equipped with a fire sprinkler system, the landlord must include a notice of its existence in the rental agreement. The notice should appear in not less than twelve-point boldface font.
If the landlord knows that a unit is currently infested with bed bugs, they must disclose this fact to prospective tenants and should not offer it for rent. Upon the tenant’s request, the landlord must also disclose the last date on which the unit was inspected and found free of bed bugs.
Rent and Fees
- Rent Due Date: Unless otherwise agreed, rent is payable at the beginning of each month at the dwelling unit. Landlords must provide rent receipts for all cash payments (CS § 47a-3a).
- Application Fees: Rental application fees are not regulated in Connecticut.
- Electronic Payments: Landlords of residential properties are prohibited from requiring electronic funds transfer as the only form of acceptable payment of rent or security deposits (CS § 47a-4c).
- Rent Increases: Rent control is banned in Connecticut (CS § 7-148b).
- Late Fees: There are no statutory limits on late fees in Connecticut.
- Grace Period: 9 days (CS § 47a-15a).
- NSF/Bounced Check Fee Maximum: Connecticut has no statute regarding bad check fees.
- Withholding Rent/Repair and Deduct: If the landlord fails to supply essential services (such as heat, running water, hot water, electricity, or gas), the tenant may give notice to the landlord specifying the breach. Then, the tenant may either use the repair and deduct remedy (procure a reasonable amount of the service and deduct the cost from rent) or find reasonable substitute housing during the noncompliance. If the noncompliance is willful, the tenant may terminate the lease and recover two months’ rent or double the actual damages, whichever is greater (CS § 47a-13).
- Deposit Limit: 2 months’ rent for tenants younger than 62 years old; 1 month’s rent if the tenant is 62 years old or older (CS § 47a-21(b)).
- Interest: Landlords in Connecticut are required to pay tenants the accrued interest on their security deposits. As of January 1, 2012, the rate of interest should not be less than the deposit index for that year, as defined in section 36a-26 (CS § 47a-21(d(1),(i))).
- Return Within: 30 days or 15 days after receiving written notification of the tenant’s forwarding address, whichever is later (CS § 47a-21(d(2))).
- Deposit Location: Landlords are required to keep security deposits in a separate escrow account established or maintained in a financial institution (CS § 47a-21(h(1))).
- Withholding: Landlords may withhold funds from the security deposit for damages, unpaid rent, and any other losses that the landlord has suffered as a result of the tenant’s failure to comply with the lease agreement obligations. Landlords must also return a written statement itemizing the nature and amount of these damages with the remainder of the deposit (CS § 47a-21(d(1-2))).
Tenant Screening and Fair Housing Protections
- Federal law prohibits discrimination in housing based on race, color, religion, gender, national origin, familial status, and disability (Title 24 USC § 3601-3607). Connecticut state law adds sexual orientation, gender identity, age, ancestry, military/veteran status, marital status, and lawful source of income (CS § 46a-64c).
- Connecticut landlords are subject to the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) (15 USC § 1681), which outlines the responsibilities of landlords to protect tenant credit information. According to the Act, landlords may not share tenant credit information with anyone without a legal reason to view it. They must also investigate disputed information, dispose of credit reports after use in tenant screening, and notify applicants when their credit score or history was the reason for their denial.
- Criminal background checks may be used during tenant screening in Connecticut. However, landlords cannot refuse to rent to individuals with criminal records altogether. Instead, landlords must assess each tenant individually, considering the nature, severity, and age of convictions (Tenant Selection: Use of Criminal Records by Landlords). For more information, see the HUD’s General Counsel Guidance on applying FHA standards to the use of criminal records.
- Connecticut landlords should follow HUD recommendations for using criminal background checks fairly. This includes avoiding blanket policies for denying applicants with criminal convictions, assessing applicants and their criminal histories on a case-by-case basis, and only denying an applicant when they demonstrate a risk to the safety of other residents or the property.
- Advanced Notice: Reasonable written or oral notice (CS § 47a-16(c)).
- Permitted Times: Reasonable times. Landlords may enter for inspections, maintenance, repairs, alterations, improvements, supplying services, and showings (CS § 47a-16(a)).
- Emergency Entry: In case of an emergency, the landlord may enter without advanced notice or consent (CS § 47a-16(b)).
- Rent Demand Notice: 3 days to pay or quit (CS § 47a-23).
- Notice for Lease Violation: 15 days to cure or quit (CS § 47a-15(a)).
- Unconditional Notice to Quit: 15 days to quit. According to Connecticut eviction laws, no notice is required if the tenant is convicted of using the dwelling unit for illegal purposes such as prostitution or illegal gambling (CS § 47a-15(a)).
Other Laws and Facts About Connecticut
- The median rent rate in Connecticut is $1,485.
- The median rent rate in New Haven is $1,895.
- Victims of domestic violence are given special rental protections under Connecticut law. If a tenant needs to vacate the premises due to fear of imminent harm to themselves or a dependent due to family violence or sexual assault, the tenant may give 30 days’ written notice and terminate the lease without penalty (CS § 47a-11e).