Mississippi Landlord Tenant Laws
January 31, 2023
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|Required Disclosures |
Rent and Fees
Application Fees: Permitted
Rent Control: Banned
Late Fee Limit: Reasonable
Grace Period Minimum: N/A
Amount Limit: N/A
Return Within: 45 days
Permitted Times of Entry: N/A
|Fair Housing Protections |
Rent Demand Notice: 3-day pay-or-quit notice
Notice for Lease Violation: 14-day notice to cure-or-quit
Unconditional Notice to Quit: Immediate
Mississippi Landlord-Tenant Law
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.
Rent and Fees
- Rent Due Date: There is no statute in Mississippi specifying when rent should be due. The date and location at which rent is due should be included in a Mississippi lease agreement.
- Application Fees: Rental application fees are not regulated in Mississippi.
- Rent Increases: Rent control is banned in Mississippi (Miss. Code § 21-17-5(2)).
- Late Fees: There is no statutory limit on late fees in Mississippi. What is a reasonable late fee for rent in Mississippi? A typical late fee ranges from 5%-10% of monthly rent.
- Grace Period: There is no mandatory grace period in Mississippi.
- NSF/Bounced Check Fee Maximum: If the tenant’s rent check bounces, the landlord may charge a fee of $30 (Miss. Code § 97-19-67(5)).
- Withholding Rent/Repair and Deduct: If the landlord fails to repair a specific, material defect that constitutes a breach of the lease, the tenant may give a written notice to the landlord. After 30 days, if the landlord still fails to make the repair, the tenant may repair the defect and either deduct the cost from future rent or demand reimbursement of the expenses within 45 days. However, the amount must not exceed one month’s rent, and the tenant must also be current in all rental payments (Miss. Code § 89-8-15).
- Deposit Limit: There is no limit on security deposit amounts in Mississippi.
- Interest: Mississippi landlords are not required to pay interest on security deposits.
- Return Within: 45 days (Miss. Code § 89-8-21(3)).
- Deposit Location: Landlords are not required to keep security deposits in a separate bank account.
- Withholding: Landlords may withhold funds from the security deposit for unpaid rent, cleaning, property damage beyond normal wear and tear, or other reasonable and necessary expenses incurred because of the tenant’s default. Landlords must also send the tenant a written notice itemizing the amounts withheld from the security deposit (Miss. Code § 89-8-21(3)).
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). Mississippi state law reaffirms these protections (Miss. Code § 43-33-723).
- Mississippi 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 Mississippi.
- Mississippi 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: There is no state law in Mississippi requiring landlords to give advance notice before entering a property.
- Permitted Times: Mississippi state law does not designate any time-of-day restrictions for entering.
- Emergency Entry: There are no laws in Mississippi regarding emergency entry without notice. However, landlords are generally permitted entry during emergencies.
- Rent Demand Notice: 3 days to pay or quit (Miss. Code § 89-8-13(5)).
- Notice for Lease Violation: 14 days to cure or quit. After the second violation within six months, the landlord may issue an unconditional 14-day notice to quit with no opportunity to cure the violation (Miss. Code § 89-8-13(3)).
- Unconditional Notice to Quit: Immediate. According to Mississippi laws on eviction, landlords are not required to send notice before terminating a tenancy when the tenant has committed a substantial violation of the rental agreement or the law that materially affects health or safety (Miss. Code § 89-8-19(4)).
Other Laws and Facts About Mississippi
- The median rent rate in Mississippi is $1,410.
- The median rent rate in Jackson is $1,030.
- According to the Derrick Beard Act, any cosigner of a residential lease may terminate the lease before the expiration date upon the death of the lessee, so long as they provide notice to the lessor within 30 days (Miss. Code § 89-8-29).