Arizona Rental Laws

Written on February 8, 2014 by , updated on April 10, 2019

Flag of ArizonaThis article summarizes some key Arizona Landlord-Tenant laws applicable to residential rental units.

We’ve used the Official State Statutes and other online sources cited below to research this information and it should provide an excellent starting point to learn about the law.

With that said, our summary is not intended to be exhaustive or a substitute for qualified legal advice. Laws and statutes are always subject to change, and may even vary from county to county or city to city.

You are responsible for performing your own research and complying with all laws applicable to your unique situation.

If you have legal questions or concerns, we recommend consulting with the appropriate government agencies and/or a qualified lawyer in your area. Your local or state bar association may have a referral service that can help you find a lawyer with experience in landlord-tenant law.

Official Rules and Regulations

Security Deposit:

  • Security Deposit Maximum: Landlords cannot demand more than one and one-half month’s rent for a deposit and/or any prepaid rent. This does not prohibit a tenant from voluntarily paying more than one and one-half month’s rent in advance. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(A))
  • Security Deposit Interest: No Statute
  • Nonrefundable Fees: Allowed, but the fee must be stated in the written lease agreement. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(B))
  • Separate Security Deposit Bank Account: No Statute
  • Pet Deposits and Additional Fees: Yes, but the total deposit must not exceed the limit of one and one-half month’s rent. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(A))
  • Deadline for Returning Security Deposit: 14 days, excluding weekend days and legal holidays (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(D))
  • Require Written Description / Itemized List of Damages and Charges: Yes. The list must be sent along with the security deposited the tenant is owed, via first-class mail. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(D))
  • Record Keeping of Deposit Withholdings: No Statute
  • Receipt of Deposit: No Statute
  • Failure to Comply: If the landlord fails to comply with Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(D), the tenant may recover the property and money due together with damages in an amount equal to twice the amount wrongfully withheld. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(E))

Lease, Rent & Fees:

  • When Rent Is Due: Rent is payable without demand or notice at the time and place agreed upon by the parties. Unless otherwise determined, rent is payable at the dwelling unit. Periodic rent is payable at the beginning of any term of one month or less and otherwise in monthly installments at the beginning of the month. Rent shall be uniformly apportionable from day-to-day unless an alternative arrangement is made. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1314(C))
  • Rent Increase Notice: No Statute
  • Rent Grace Period: No statute for residential dwellings. Five days for manufactured homes (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1414(A4))
  • Late Fees: No statute for residential dwellings. Late fees for manufactured homes must not to exceed five dollars per day. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1414(C))
  • Prepaid Rent: Landlord cannot demand more than one and one-half month’s rent for the total deposit and any prepaid rent combined. This does not prohibit a tenant from voluntarily paying more than one and one-half month’s rent in advance (see “security deposit maximum,” above). (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(A))
  • Returned Check Fees: No Statute
  • Tenant Allowed to Withhold Rent for Failure to Provide Essential Services (Water, Heat, etc.): Yes (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1364)
  • Tenant Allowed to Repair and Deduct Rent: Yes, but only with proper notice, and a 10 day waiting period for non-emergencies. Withheld rent must not be more than $300 or one-half of the monthly rent, whichever is greater. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1363)
  • Landlord Allowed to Recover Court and Attorney Fees: Yes (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 12-341.01)
  • Landlord Must Make a Reasonable Attempt to Mitigate Damages to Lessee, including an Attempt to Rerent: Yes (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1370(C))

Notices and Entry:

  • Notice to Terminate Tenancy – Fixed End Date in Lease: No notice is needed as the lease simply expires.
  • Notice to Terminate Tenancy – Month-to-Month Lease: 30 days or more from lease expiration. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1375(B))
  • Notice to Terminate Tenancy – Week-to-Week Lease: At lease 10 days from lease expiration. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1375(A))
  • Tenant Holdover: If the tenant remains in possession without the landlord’s consent after the rental agreement expires or is terminated, the landlord may bring an action for possession. If the tenant’s holdover is willful and not in good faith the landlord, in addition, may recover an amount equal to not more than two months’ rent or twice the actual damages sustained by the landlord, whichever is greater. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1375(C))
  • Notice of Date/Time of Move-Out Inspection: Upon the tenant’s request, the landlord must perform a joint move-out inspection. If the tenant is being evicted for a material and irreparable breach and the landlord has reasonable cause to fear violence or intimidation from the tenant, the landlord has no obligation to conduct the joint move-out inspection. The landlord must provide a written notification to the tenant that the tenant may be present at the move-out inspection. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(C))
  • Lease Terminations / Notices to Quit:
    • Lease Termination for Nonpayment: 5 days to remedy or quit (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1368(B))
    • Termination for Lease Violation: 10 days to remedy or quit, but only 5 days notice is required for noncompliance by the tenant, if the tenant’s breach affects health and safety. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1368(A) and 33-1314)
    • Termination of Lease for Falsification of Information: 10 days notice is required if the tenant falsified a criminal record, previous eviction record, or current criminal activity. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1368(A2))
    • Immediate Lease Termination: Allowed, if tenant is responsible for illegal discharge of a weapon, homicide (see Sections 13-1102 through 13-1105), prostitution (see Section 13-3211), criminal street gang activity (see Section 13-105), activity as prohibited in Section 13-2308, the unlawful manufacturing, selling, transferring, possessing, using or storing of a controlled substance (see Section 13-3451), threatening or intimidating (see Section 13-1202), assault (see Section 13-1203), acts that have been found to constitute a nuisance (see Section 12-991), or a breach of the lease agreement that jeopardizes the health, safety and welfare of the landlord, the landlord’s agent or another tenant or involves imminent or actual serious property damage. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1368(A2))
  • Required Notice before Entry: Two days (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1343(D))
  • Entry Allowed with Notice for Maintenance and Repairs (non-emergency): Yes (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1343(A))
  • Entry Allowed with Notice for Showings: Yes (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1343(A))
  • Emergency Entry Allowed without Notice: Yes (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1343(C))
  • Entry Allowed During Tenant’s Extended Absence: No Statute (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1343)
  • Notice to Tenants for Pesticide Use: No Statute
  • Lockouts Allowed: No
  • Utility Shut-offs Allowed: No. If the landlord fails to comply, the tenant may recover an amount not more than two months’ periodic rent or twice the actual damages sustained by him, whichever is greater. If tenant terminates the lease, landlord is required to return the entire security deposit. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1367)

Disclosures and Miscellaneous Notes:

  • Landlord Responsibilities: Landlord must maintain the rental unit so that it is fit and habitable. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1324)
  • Tenant Responsibilities: Tenant must maintain a fit and habitable premise and is prohibited from intentionally or negligently damaging or removing any part of the premise (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1341).
  • Recording of Rental Property: An owner of residential rental property shall register the property with the assessor in the county where the property is located. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1902)
  • Name and Addresses: Landlord must disclose the name and address of the property owner and anyone authorized to manage the property. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1322)
  • Disclosure of the Landlord and Tenant Act: Before or at the beginning of the tenancy, the landlord shall inform the tenant in writing that the Arizona Residential Landlord and Tenant Act is available on the Arizona Department of Housing’s website. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1322)
  • Move-In Documents: The landlord shall provide the tenant with a copy of a signed lease, a move-in form for specifying any existing damages to the dwelling unit and written notification to the tenant that the tenant may be present at the move-out inspection. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(C))
  • Bedbugs: The landlord shall provide bedbug educational materials to existing and new tenants. If the landlord knows that a rental unit has a bedbug infestation, the landlord shall not enter into any lease agreement with a tenant. (see Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1319 for more information).
  • Domestic Violence Situations:
  • Assumption of Retaliation: Landlord must not terminate or refuse to renew a lease, or reduce services, to a tenant who has filed an official complaint to a Government Authority or has been involved in a tenant’s organization in the previous six months. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1381)
  • Tenant’s Personal Property:
    • The landlord shall hold the tenant’s personal property for a period of 10 days after the landlord’s written declaration of abandonment. The landlord shall use reasonable care in holding the tenant’s personal property. Then, the landlord may sell the property to pay an outstanding debts. Any excess proceeds shall be mailed to the tenant at the tenant’s last known address. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1370(E))
    • Landlord must keep records of the sale for twelve months. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1370(F))

Court Related:

Business Licenses:

  • Business License Required: No statewide statute, but local cities and counties may have regulations and requirements. An owner of residential rental property is required to register the property with the assessor in the county where the property is located. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1902)

State agencies & regulatory bodies

Housing Authorities

Realtor & Landlord and Tenant Associations

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668 CommentsLeave a Comment

  • Jerred Morris

    Lucas – these are great and I’m looking forward to the Texas one. I’ll make sure to send friends and colleagues to these posts to learn more about landlord/tenant laws in their state.

  • Jennifer

    This is a great document to refer to, wish I had it to refer to when I lived in AZ. Is there one like it for CA on your site somewhere? Or will there be one for CA any time soon? Thanks!

  • Keri

    Hi Lucas.

    I am a tenant in phoenix, Arizona

    I have been told in the past that the mobile home laws or statues are different from the residential laws or statues.
    I have also read up on minimal differences for the mobile home spaces, as where the mobile home has an independent owner but they rent the space.
    There seems to be a discrepancy about the 33-13 and the 33-14 statues as far as where the courts deem the more practical statue.
    For example: If the mobile home owner rents a space but there was no lease written up, it becomes month to month. When it comes to termination of month to month it doesn’t show a statue for the mobile home. Only residential.
    Please clear this up for me.

    My regards,

  • Bob Martin

    I can not find a reference to this question anywhere. If the landlord violates ARS 33-1322(e) what actually happens? It’s a material noncompliance but all ARS 33-1361 says is that that the tenant may deliver a written notice to the landlord pointing out that he didn’t comply with 33-1322(e) and if the breach is not remedied in 10 days..well, you get to terminate the lease if the landlord doesn’t remedy the situation 1n 10 days. How can the landlord fix the situation? Giving me a new lease to sign? Well I won’t sign it this time because it calls for an nonrefundable deposit of $2,500.00. which wasn’t explained to me when I signed the lease, I was led to believed it was need to reserve the apt…LOL..jokes on me. HELP!

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Bob,
      ARS 33-1368 says the same thing: 10 days to terminate:

      If you already signed a lease, but the landlord didn’t, then it was never executed – and therefore is not valid. So technically, you don’t have a written lease agreement. But that doesn’t mean you don’t have an agreement.

      If you have a copy of the original agreement that the landlord provided by never signed, then I think you have a strong argument to live under those terms – which does not include a non-refundable fee.

      I think you should probably talk to a local lawyer about your right to stay in the unit, and your right to the lease terms in the original document.

      • Bob Martin

        Hi Lucas,
        Thanks for responding. Technically we are talking about two different things, and technically you are a LANDLORD, but technically you seem like a nice guy. so I’ll run the story by you again. The landlord’s secretary gave me an unsigned lease. Said there was a $2,500 deposit and the first months rent due in order to hold the apartment. I signed the lease because I didn’t feel like reading 30 pages of small print and she was cute. She gave it to her boss and I never received a signed copy back. So technically, I gave the guy a bunch of un-numbered pages with my signature on it and he could have slipped in a couple of more pages and I wouldn’t know. Heck, maybe he did. I think that’s the point of the whole law and is why the landlord has to give you a copy of the lease first, and then you sign and that’s when the lease is executed. My landlord screws up..big-time…and I can’t do anything..and he gets to keep my $2,500. Oh well, I’m 67 and broke. Next stop small claims court. Thanks again for answering. Now get some sleep.

        • Amy

          Regarding the pages you signed, this is coming from a landlord.
          You never sign something without first reading or at least skimming it first. As far as your claim it is nonrefundable, the gentleman’s suggestion to you to call a lawyer (you as a tenant can even get FREE legal council) is the best recommendation for your problem.
          I do understand what you are saying regarding signing so many pages which is why I make a point to have each tenant (all if more than one adult is on the lease) INITIAL each page and make sure each page is numbered. This eliminates the excuse for not reading the lease in its entirety or asking for clarification on sections that are not understood.

  • tina

    Hello, Have a question about giving notice of A.R.S 33-1361 and 33-1902 to landlord. 3 tenants served notice for those 2 statutes on owner and property management after new tenants had moved in and brought with them many violent problems including a shooting that resulted in one person being shot 3 times and one apartment being shot into with 5 rounds. We had a crime free provision but management refused to evict the tenants involved, instead sent us notice that they refused to accept our notice and evicted us. We answered the summons and counterclaimed, but the judge refused to hear us and would not set a trial for the counter instead he said it was stricken from the record. We were served on the 5th of the month before we could even pay the rent. We also found that none of the 19properties the out of state owner owned were registered as rentals or they had not been updated with the new management company that he hired in 2013. She has an old company on most of that went out of business in 2012. We are trying are best to figure out why we were the ones in the wrong. We had never been late on rent, never been complainers and the management company never even came to see the damages caused by the shooting. The local police used 23 cars that night and are still working on the case. And the assessor’s office still has not received any changes to any of those properties, but the management company told the judge they had updated the properties with them on May 1, 2014, just the assessor says they didn’t. None of us have ever had an eviction so this really bothers us. What did we do wrong. And i am the one who had my apartment shot into. One bullet missed my head by just a couple of feet. Even when I moved the bullet holes where still in the wall. The window was fixed but the out side wall also still had bullet holes.

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Tina,

      Wow, what a story. I’m sure it was traumatic for you and I’m sorry you are going through this. I obviously don’t know all the details to the story, but I question, did the management company actually “evict” you, or did they just say “we’re terminating the lease, please leave”. If the latter, then there are a variety of reasons why they might do so, and if you had an at-will tenancy, they don’t even need a reason as long as they give proper notice. In order for them to “evict” you, which is a forceful vacate, they need to go to court and have a judge hear the case.

      With all the police and legal activity that surrounds your situation, you really need to get a lawyer to help you fight this. You’re not going to find the answers you need on the internet. Sorry I couldn’t be more help.

      • tina

        hi, thanks for the reply. On the 2nd of May 2 tenants were served a 5 day notice to pay rent, which is due by the end of the on the 5th, and the rest of us on the morning of the 5th. Well none of paid as part of our notice was that the owner was not in compliance with 33-1902. And one of the tenants had already moved, I had started moving as rented a place on the 2nd due to the fact that the owner and management refused to evict those that were causing problems. But on the 6th all were severed a summons and in court we were all tossed out with a judgement to pay Mays rent, we were not allowed to be heard even with an answer and counter filed and served. Then the management locked everyone out on noon of the 5th day after the hearing, only one was still trying to clean her apt, but everyone had rented and moved in the first week of the month. We did have a lawyer look at our paper work before filing the answer and counter, and he said since we served notice of non compliance on april 30th that managements 5 day notice and eviction summons was just in retaliation. He also said that the counter would be set for a trial within 3 days but not more than 6 days from the hearing, that didnt happen either. The judge said he was striking it from the record as that was the wrong court for the counter?? we did it the way it said on the website, so that was a waste of paper and time. All of us lost, and I have learned at least one thing about AZ, the judicial system is not for the people unless you are a business owner or landlord, tenants and consumers dont stand a chance. The judge at the hearing told one couple who were trying to explain why moved while still under the lease, using the statutes that gave them the right, were told that if they wanted to argue the case then they should have hired a lawyer. I dont know if the court keeps written court min records here,but they sure should. The judges should not be allowed to dismiss a persons right to argue their case like that, with our without a lawyer by their side. But all the management and owners came with lawyers, so they were allowed to speak.

        • Lucas Hall

          Hi Tina,

          That doesn’t sound fair or just! I would be very angry with the “system” if I were you, and to get any sort consideration, you’re going to have to overturn an existing ruling. I’m not a lawyer, but that sounds fairly difficult to accomplish.

          The only bright side is that you’ve learned some lessons, and know how to handle things differently as a tenant, and a landlord if you ever become one. Plus, you don’t have to deal with that company anymore.

          If you want, you could write a review of the management company on Yelp.

  • Aaron

    Signed a nine month lease that ends on july 19th. Tried to give thirty days notice to vacate and was told by landlord that the lease stipulates a 60 notice. This was an obvious oversight on my part, is there any way out of this? I thought that there was a provision that allowed a tenant to vacate at the end of the signed lease regardless of notice to vacate stipulations. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Aaron,

      Typically yes, if you had a fixed term lease, it would just expire naturally. However, for years, landlords have been getting the run-around from tenants who say “We’d like to renew”, but then 5 days before the end of the lease, the tenant says “sorry, we changed our minds”.

      Thank you for trying to give 30 days notice. As another landlord, I really appreciate thoughtful tenants such as yourself.

      With that said, if you agreed to give 60 days notice, prior to the end of your lease, regarding your plans to renew or move-out, then you can be held responsible for 60 days – even if it exceeds the lease end date. This is simply upholding the terms of the lease.

      So, if the landlord fails to find a replacement tenant within 60 days of your original notice, you could be responsible for rent for the full 60 days – even though your lease has expired and you have moved out. But if the landlord finds a replacement before the end of 60 days, I would expect the landlord to prorate your rent responsibility.

      The bottom-line is that you should fulfill any obligation that you have in the lease. If you feel that a clause or provision goes against a statute or law, then you should talk to a lawyer (which I am not), and get legal advice.

  • Bradley Opsal

    I have been renting a house now for 3 years. I just had my hot water heater go out 8 days ago. I called in the work order the same day that it went out. What are my legal recourses I have available? Can I withhold the next months rent? Can I take out a certain amount out of the rent? This is very frustrating for me and I have resorted to taking my family to the hotel just to take a hot shower. Thanks!

  • Vickie Mitchell

    Can a landlord require a tenant to have renters insurance?

  • Logan MacMurdo

    Hi Lucas,
    My wife and I received 60 days written notice from our landlord that she intends to move to Tucson and into our home. We are 30 days into a one year lease. We just completed our first two year lease at the same property.

    There are no clauses in the lease granting her the ability to move back in or terminate the lease without cause.
    She says we are great tenants and her only cause for terminating our lease is her need to move back to Tucson from Phoenix.
    We can’t find much precedent for this kind of situation in Arizona. Any help would be great.
    -Logan and Kristina MacMurdo

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Logan,

      I’m not aware of any statute that gives your landlord the right to terminate your lease just because she wants to move back in. If there are no clauses in your lease that give her that ability, then I don’t see how she can legally do it. The reason you signed a year lease was so that you had security for at least a year.

      With that said, I think you should spend $100, and talk to a experienced Landlord-Tenant attorney in your city/county for an hour. I’m not a lawyer, but rather just an experienced landlord. There may be a local law that allows her to do this. You should get legal advice ASAP, and then use that advice to politely inform your landlord that she cannot move in until your lease is up. Or better yet, ask the lawyer to send a letter to the landlord, informing her of your rights.

      That sure would ruffle her feathers! Stand up for yourself.

  • sarah

    I need some legal advice on quite a few things… Do you have an attorney you recommend for tenants in Arizona? Preferably low cost :-)

  • Tina B

    In Arizona I signed a lease yesterday. Did not get a copy, did not get keys, did not take possession of the apartment yet. The apartment won’t be ready til next week.

    Went back today and wanted to cancel and was told that I could not cancel.

    Where do I stand according to the law in Arizona?

  • Lynn

    Hello Lucas, Thank you for having this blog. I am renting a space for my business and have a year lease, within the year lease there is this statement:

    “Both landlord and tenant will have the option of early lease termination and notification by either party must be in writing via certified mail at lease 90 days prior to early lease termination. Should the tenant initiate an early lease termination, they will forfeit their deposit and be responsible for 3 full months of rent due in full to the landlord no later than 14 days of the notice of termination.”

    I wrote my letter and gave 90 days notice and never received a request for 3 months of rent (within 14 days of my notice) until my final invoice (I have been paying full rent, on time since I gave my termination notice 3 months ago) where is it claimed to be a “early termination fee”. There is no mention of any fees in the lease besides late fee for rent and returned checks.

    What do you suggest I do in this situation? Thank you~

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Lynn,

      Usually and early termination fee is in addition to the rent. However, your lease is worded in a way that makes it sound like the landlord just wants to make sure you pay the rent for the 3 months. I think this is a miscommunication error. The landlord probably meant to say that there is a early termination fee, but didn’t exactly say that in the lease.

      The bottom line: both parties have to play by the rules of the lease. I think you could make a strong argument that you fulfilled your obligation by paying rent for the next 3 months after you gave notice. However, the landlord will probably play hardball, so be prepared to get help from a lawyer to write a cease and desist letter if the landlord tries to pursue you in court – or if he tries to go through collections.

      If he tries to file a small claims suit against you, I think you could easily plead your case based on the wording in the lease, and then hopefully the judge would rule in your favor.

      Keep in mind, I’m not a lawyer, and this is not legal advice. I’m just and experienced landlord, trying to help.

  • Hettie Paulson


    Recently moved out of rented home where I paid $4000 monthly for nearly 5 years. It’s been 20 days since the walkthrough with the ‘out of state’ landlord who flew here to meet me and I’ve still not seen my security deposit. Landlord promised to to be refunded about 10 days ago at the latest. No outstanding issue were noted in face to face final inspection.

    Since then, Landlord only responds via text and only then vaguely. Has asked about minor damages that I don’t believe existed and were not noted at walkthrough. Has asked about income ($40) they were told I received for contracting with a fruit harvesting company that worked the trees on the property and has asked about ‘missing’ items such as fans and lights that were never even in the home originally when we moved in. Landlord has also has the home painted and has not been clear but seems to be intimating that we’re going to that cost withheld from our deposit even though we filled and repaired all nail holes and used original, albeit new paint of the same type and color to paint over repaired holes. Even paint professionals who mixed paint to match original paint told me it’s impossible to exactly match the sheen and color of 7-8 year old paint. We feel helpless as the landlord is not fully responsive and has failed to do as they agreed originally to return our deposit and seems to now be just coming up with anything possible to withold nickels and dimes from us. We believe the home was left in spectactular condition and the landlord had no issues when we did final walkthrough. Now 20+ days later, what do we do? FYI, landlord lives in another state but owns and rents multiple local homes.

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Hettie,

      The Arizona statutes are on your side in this case. If the landlord fails to comply with Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(D), a tenant may recover the property and money due the tenant together with damages in an amount equal to twice the amount wrongfully withheld. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(E))

      I suggest reading the entire statute so you understand it completely. If you want to take action, I suggest sending a demand letter to him – demanding your deposit back. If he doesn’t, you then could file a claim in small claims court, where you might get back as much as 2x your deposit.

      Keep in mind, I’m not a lawyer, and this is not legal advice.

  • Cliff Songer

    I rented a proprty to a tenant in Arizona and both parties signed a lease. The rental payments started to come in 23 days late every month and I called and spoke with the tenant on being late, this was 3 months in a row. The lease stated $50 for each days after the tenth of every month, the rent was due on the 2nd of each month.

    The lease was a 1 year lease, signed in Decmeber. I tried to work with the tenant and stated that I could re-list the property and see if I could rent it to another person, which would allow them to move out without breaking the lease, I offered this in March. The tenant stated no, that they did not have the funds to move.

    The tenant sent me an email stated that they were going to move out in May due to financial difficulties. on the 15th they moved out (breaking the lease agreement) and left the property in much needed maintenace. The lease states that if they break the lease that they would owe $3300, this is 3 months rent. The tenant did not pay for May, and I still havent been able to rent the property.

    After inspecting the home, I noticed several expenses for bring the property to the standards as they received. The tenant would not meet with me to inspect the house or go over the descripancies that I noted. The tenant stated that they were not coming back to fix decripancies.

    My question is should I take this to small claims court for $4400, and would I have a legt to stand on? The $4400 is for May rent and the $3300 for breaking the lease.

    Thanks, Cliff

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Cliff,

      Not only do I suggest filing a small claims suit for $4400, but I also suggest adding in the cost of all late fees and repairs to bring the property back to the condition it was when he moved out.

      Sum up all your damages, and give them a monetary value – then sue for that amount.

      Last time I checked, I think the limit for small claims (depending on your county) is $3,500, so you may have to file the case in Civil Court – which has a limit of $10,000.

      The AZ website is slightly confusing, but it’s all there:

      If you still need help, I suggest contacting a local landlord-tenant lawyer. Though collections might be tough if the old tenant doesn’t have a job, at least you’ll have the judgement. Then you can act on it later on, when the tenant might be more stable.

  • Samantha

    Hello Lucas,
    I am currently renting month to month in an apartment I’ve been in for 3 years. Signed a 1 year l lease, fulfilled, and month to month ever since. I am needing a bigger place which I have found. I gave a 30 day hand written notice on the 15th of August. I am scheduled to move the 12th of September. Am I required to pay rent for September or is there something to the effect of, If manager rerents I would not be responsible for rent for September? And if so, can she keep deposit for the rent? # bit of a costly move…

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Samantha

      Thanks for your question. Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1375(B) says that the written notice must be given 30 days or more from lease expiration date.

      Meaning, if you pay rent on the first of the month, for a month-to-month tenancy, you need to give 30 days notice from the first of the month. If you give notice on the Aug 15th, the soonest termination date you would be allowed to have would be Sept 30 (30 days from Sept 1).

      Don’t be surprised if your landlord in AZ, forces you to pay for the entire month of September unless he/she finds a replacement tenant sooner than that.

      Yes, Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1370(C) says that a landlord must make a reasonable effort to re-rent and mitigate damages to you. However, the term “reasonable” is very broad, and it’s difficult to find tenants in only a few weeks time.

      Keep in mind, I’m not a lawyer and this is not legal advice. I’m just a landlord trying to help.

  • Jo

    As a landlord being called by potential new landlord for one of my tenants, what information can I disclose in AZ? Thanks,

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Jo,

      Technically, you really shouldn’t disclose much without permission from the tenant. If you are concerned about violating privacy rights, then you should err on the side of caution. Obviously, you shouldn’t give out any sort of personally identifiable information – just as full name, SSN, DOB, etc.

      However, in my opinion (non-legal) I think it’s okay to give your opinion of the tenant, based on facts. Such as paying rent on time, or the degree to which they trashed the unit. If you are still nervous, I suggest just answering the questions “would you rent to them again…”

      I’m not a lawyer, nor can I give legal advice, so please take it with a grain of salt.

      • Jo

        If the tenant moves out a few days prior to the end date of the lease and someone breaks in damaging the house, is the tenant responsible for the house until the keys are returned and inspection done for move out?

        • Lucas Hall

          Hi Jo,

          The person breaking into the house would be responsible for the damages, not the tenant (unless you can prove negligence or foul play).

          It’s no different than if someone broke into your home. Would you be to blame? No way.

          Break-ins should be documented by a police report and damages are usually covered by insurance.

  • Samantha

    Hello again… So I gave 30 day notice August 18… Move out date is September 12… I’ve paid no rent so far this month and also have no 5Day notice. Not in a lease. Month to month for 2 years now. Manager came today and asked for half months rent and also stated she has someone moving in ASAP. With that fact can I not pay her rent for half month when she’s already rented it out?

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Samantha,

      I don’t really understand.

      If your rent is due on the first of the month, Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1375(B) requires that you give 30 days notice from the 1st of the month. So giving notice on the 18th of August is the same as giving notice on Sept 1. Your last day of rent will be Sept 30th.

      Here’s the law:

      When you give notice, you still have to pay rent for the rest of the notice period – not just until when you move out. If your landlord finds someone sooner, he/she can prorate rent back to you.

      So, if you owe rent through Sept 30 (regardless of when you move out), why haven’t you paid sept’s rent yet? Be careful that you don’t end up in small claims court over the missing rent.

  • Sonny

    I’m very curious about something that happened at my last inspection. The inspector brought a camera, and took pictures of every room in the house. I have issues with this in terms of privacy. I know that these agencies can write a lot of things into the lease agreement, however I’m wondering if there are any laws that are applicable to this. I don’t take issue with them taking pictures of some kind of damage providing their not including my personal belongings in them, but to take pictures of everything I own? Regardless of what’s written into the contract, are there any laws that make reference to this?

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Sonny,

      You bring up a good point. I can tell you my opinion, but keep in mind, I’m not a lawyer. If you are looking for legal advice, you’ll need to go elsewhere. A lawyer would be able to advise you on the laws.

      In my opinion, as long as the owner or manager gave sufficient notice that they would be entering the property, then there is no assumption of privacy for things left out in the open. Obviously, they shouldn’t be digging through your dresser drawers, but they are allowed to photograph every room to document damage – which includes closets. If your stuff is in the way, then it will likely get photographed too.

      One of the purposes of giving notice is so that the tenant can put away anything that they didn’t want seen. Does that make sense?

  • Erin

    I rent in Arizona from an owner who lives in California. When a problem arises it takes days, sometimes a week to get in touch with him & even longer to get the problem fixed. He has no agent or anyone within the state where the rental is acting on his behalf. It took 5 days for him to send a repairman when our A/C stopped working in the height of the summer heat. Can we break our lease due to the owner not having proper & readily available agents in Arizona?

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Erin,

      Generally speaking, no. The better question is, did the landlord act responsibly or was he negligent in taking action.

      Sometimes there is a delay when hiring service professionals – and you can’t always get on their schedule right away. I’m not making excuses, I’m just saying that it’s hard to prove someone is being negligent.

      If you want to break your lease, I think you should just be honest with your landlord and see if you can work out a deal. Otherwise, you’ll need to talk a lawyer to see if he/she can find a loophole in your lease.

      Sorry I couldn’t be more helpful. Keep in mind, I’m not a lawyer but rather just an experienced landlord. Please don’t consider this legal advice.

  • candy

    I am renting a place in Az. The original owner sold it to a couple in California. They have not seen this property in 2.5 years since we have live here. We are having electric issues where one outlet caught the wall on fire. I told him 4 months ago and he has not find it. He is also saying this house had no damage he never did a walk through with us. We are moving out next month but he is saying he can’t do a walk through until December is that legal? How do I prove their was damage when we moved in?

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Candy,

      The only way to prove the move-in condition is to have previously documented it. Hopefully you would have taken notes at the time you moved-in, or perhaps a quick video to show the unit’s condition.

      If not, then all you can do now is to document the condition when you move out – so in case something happens between the time you move-out and the time that they can inspect the place. Take careful notes, and use your phone to capture a video walk-through, with lots of pictures.

      You can kindly inform your landlord that he/she has 14 days after the end of your lease to return any remaining deposit. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(D)).

      Further, the landlord is require to itemize any damages, with a written description of charges if he/she is going to withhold any money. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(D))

      If the landlord fails to comply with Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(D), tenant may recover the property and money due the tenant together with damages in an amount equal to twice the amount wrongfully withheld. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1321(E))

      The links to the statutes are in the article above. Keep in mind, I’m NOT a lawyer, so please do not take this as legal advice. I hope that helps!

  • Jennifer Farney

    I’m renting a house in Arizona and the landlord has given a 10 day non compliance for having a pet. can we ask the landlord if we can keep our pet and offer a deposit or should we break our kids hearts and give it away quick so that we don’t get evicted? The lease states no pets without prior consent of landlord. there’s also a ticket owed to the HOA for parking in our driveway which must be paid within the 10 days compliance but we never received a copy of the HOA rules when we moved in or prior to moving in. Are we responsible to pay this ticket that we knew nothing about so we can stay in our house? I’ve read everything regarding tenants and landlords but it’s not clear cut with either of these circumstances. Please answer quick. thank you

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Jennifer,

      You can certainly ask if there are extra steps you can take to change the landlord’s mind. However, it doesn’t mean the landlord is going to say yes. Often times, the landlord’s decision to allow or not allow pets has nothing to do with money – so an increased deposit might not sway the landlord. Feel free to ask, but in the end, respect the landlords decision. And yes, he/she can terminate your lease for non-compliance (the pet), so it’s really your choice – what do you value more?

      I think you could make a strong case that the landlord should have to pay the ticket to the HOA. It’s the landlord’s job to inform you of all the rules of the Community. If he/she didn’t then the fault falls to the landlord. However, if there are signs posted anywhere in the community that you are not allowed to park in the driveway, that would serve as sufficient notice. You won’t find a statute or law that governs this – as it’s too specific.

      Keep in mind, I’m not a lawyer, so please don’t consider this legal advice.

      • Jennifer Farney

        There is no signs/posts information about parking in the driveway. I understand the pet rule also and can only hope the landlord will allow our pet. Thank you so much for this useful blog and taking the time to help me out during a very stressful time!

  • Lorena Soto

    Hi Lucas,

    I’m the landlord to a house but the people I am renting the house to signed a 1 year lease but have only paid 2 months of rent and not even complete . The person that had signed the lease had said only 5 people would be there (3adults and 2 children) but only the children is there and the person that signed the lease left and left her mother that is not on the lease with 5 other kids . Also they had billed my water bill to $500 and electricity about $500 to $600 and this was all under my name . They currently have no water since they had shut that off and the electricity off as well . The kids are not in a good condition. What should I do?

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Lorena,

      I’m happy to provide my opinion, but please know that I am not a lawyer. The advice of a lawyer would help you greatly in this situation.

      1. I think you need give them a 5 days to remedy or quit (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1368(B)), which basically says that they have 5 days to pay rent in full, or the lease will be terminated. After 5 days, file an “unlawful detainer” action with your local courthouse. This is also known as an eviction lawsuit. You can’t kick them out of the property without going to court.

      2. Simultaneously, call the child protective services. They should know about the situation and can give you better advice.

      3. Call the water and electric company and get the utilities turned back on. If they are in your name, you can ultimately be held responsible for the debt and the damage caused to the tenants. It doesn’t matter if they didn’t pay you or pay the company.

      4. Talk to a lawyer if you can afford one. You need to get these tenants out of your property as fast as possible – but you also need to notify the authorities about the condition of the kids. If you think any of the kids are in danger of harm, or death, call 911 immediately.

  • Shannon

    We are renting a room in our home, and the tenant is not keeping up with their cleaning responsibilities as outlined in the lease. We do not want to evict him, as he is the son of a friend and is living with us while he attends college, but we are not sure what we can do to make sure he keeps up with his end of the lease. He pays his rent on time, doesn’t make any noise, and with the exception of cleanliness is a wonderful tenant. I greatly appreciate any help you can give.
    Thank you.

  • Shannon

    I forgot to mention that we live in Arizona.

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi Shannon,

      Unfortunately, you can’t cause someone to change their behavior if they don’t want to.

      When a tenant doesn’t uphold their lease responsibilities, the landlord’s only recourse is to send a 10 days notice to remedy or quit. However, only 5 days notice is required for noncompliance by the tenant with section 33-1341 materially affecting health and safety. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1368(A))

      Meaning, if he gets 10 days to clean up his act (literally) or you will be terminating the lease. Once the lease is terminated, if he has not moved out, you can file for eviction with the local courts. They will hear your case, and upon a judgement, then send the sheriff to force the tenant out.

      Keep in mind, I’m not a lawyer, so please don’t take this as legal advice. Good Luck. Please let me know how it goes.

  • ClemJackWill

    My daughter and her husband are caring for my 75 year old mother in her apartment.We recently tried to add them on my mother’s lease, but due to my daughter’s husband having a felony on his record, they declined the application and have issued a 10 day notice. My questions are,My mother’s rent is paid until the end of October, do they have to leave before than? Isn’t this a form of descrimination? I thought In Arizona they had some type of law called A S 1454. If they stay until the end of the month will this go to court before they physically throw them out? Also if they move out early will they prorate my Mother’s rent?

    • Lucas Hall

      Hi ClemJackWill

      If the landlord is terminating the lease because there are unapproved tenants there (your daughter and husband), then there is a strong chance she will not get her money back. The landlord will likely use the excess to cover the vacancy will a new tenant is found – since it was the tenant that violated the lease.

      With that said, tenants are allowed to remedy the situation in order to stay:

      Termination for Lease Violation: 10 days to remedy or quit, but only 5 days notice is required for noncompliance by the tenant with section 33-1341 materially affecting health and safety. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1368(A))

      I know having your daughter and husband move out is not really an option, because your mother still needs care, but perhaps they could sleep somewhere else, and visit the mother all day.

      A landlord cannot physically kick out a tenant or change the locks. Only the sheriff can do that, and only after an eviction judgement has been awarded.

      If your family does not remedy the issue or move out within 10 days, the landlord will have to go to court to win an eviction judgement – which usually takes a few week. After that, the sheriff will help the landlord take back the property. If the landlord changes the locks or shuts off the utilities, call a lawyer IMMEDIATELY.

      Keep in mind, I’m not a lawyer, so please don’t consider this legal advice. I hope it all works out for you.

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