Miami Florida: Renters Rights

Apartment Rental.jpgRenter’s Rights in Miami Florida

If you are renting a home, you may not realize that you have rights under Florida real estate laws. While these laws can vary from state to state, if you are having problems with your landlord you should contact a Miami real estate lawyer.

Basic Lease

When a tenant rents a home, a lease is constructed and is considered to be a contract of both the landlord and the tenant. The lease enforces rules of the rental, such as rent, when it is due, and how long the lease will be. Leases are written to benefit the both parties and can be written with a multitude of variables. A lease with a specified termination date is known as a tenancy for years. Unless another agreement is reached, on the last day of the lease the agreement is terminated and the tenant must vacate the home. A periodic tenancy lasts for a specified period, usually month-to-month, and there is no definite termination date. If the contract is violated based on the laws in accordance with Florida, you have the option to renew the lease at the contract end-date. A tenancy at sufferance refers to the situation where a tenant stays in the home even after the contract was terminated. Landlords who seek to evict after the lease is terminated must follow Florida law. Contact a Miami real estate lawyer if you are being wrongfully evicted.

Security Deposits
Landlords often require a security deposit in advance. The security deposit is intended to cover the costs of any damages that may occur that is not considered “normal wear and tear” and protect the landlord if the tenant does not pay rent. At the termination of the lease, the landlord must return the security deposit within 15-21 days to return the money or notify the tenant of a claim against the security deposit for damages. If the landlord makes a claim, the tenant has 15 days to object. Assuming the tenant agrees, the landlord can then use the security deposit to fix any damages needed. Any dispute on claims can be taken to court. If you think your landlord is trying to wrongfully claim your deposit, contact a Miami real estate lawyer to help you fight for your money.

If there is a breach of the lease or the tenant refuses to pay the rent, the landlord has the right to evict the tenant. He or she cannot physically force the tenant to leave the property, but has the right to file a claim for eviction after giving notice to the tenant for eviction. If a suit is ordered and the tenant does not respond, the judge or court will rule in favor of the landlord. Both sides will be heard and action will be taken in favor of the non-breaching party.


Florida Residential Real Estate Law, April 20th 2011