If you’re planning to lease out your home in Arkansas, there’s plenty of research you should do as a landlord, before finding a tenant. For instance, a landlord needs to familiarize themselves with the local and federal landlord-resident laws prior to the rental agreement beginning.

These regulations stipulate your rights and duties as a landlord as well as those of your residents throughout the written lease. To avoid disputes, or even eviction, it's important to make this law clear to your tenant.

Knowing this law and regulations will aid a landlord in protecting their investment and have a great relationship with their tenant. It's also important for a landlord to include this in the written lease agreement.

Without written lease agreements, the landlord can evict the tenant by giving one rental period's notice. If the tenant pays weekly, the landlord would give a rental period's notice of one week.

To make things easier for you and your tenant, the experts at Pro X Property Management Bentonville have written this guide! Keep reading to learn about the Arkansas landlord-tenant law.

Required Landlord Disclosures in Arkansas

In every state, landlords are required by law to make necessary disclosures to their tenant before having them sign the lease agreement. In Arkansas, landlords must disclose in the rental agreements whether there are any concentrations of lead-based paint on the premises. However, this regulation only applies to homes built before 1978.

Arkansas Tenant Rights and Responsibilities

Under Arkansas landlord-tenant law, landlords and residents have certain automatic rights and responsibilities if there’s a written or oral lease agreement in place or if rent payments are made and accepted. According to these regulations and the rental agreement, the tenant has the right to:

  • Lease and live in safe, habitable rental units.
  • Not to be discriminated against by the landlord when searching for a place to rent. This is stated under the Fair Housing Laws.
  • Be eviced through a judicious eviction process.
  • For repairs to be made within 30 days after sending their landlord a notice detailing the issue.
  • Break the written leases early due to active military duty, lease violations, or an early termination clause in the rental agreements.

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Renters in Arkansas also have several obligations. In this state, residents must:

  • Pay rent on time to the landlord
  • Keep the property in a safe and sanitary condition
  • Comply with an eviction notice
  • Notify their landlord of any vital home maintenance tasks
  • Not disturb the quiet enjoyment of neighbors or other tenants
  • Notify the landlord when wanting to end the lease
  • Not committing damage to the rental unit

Arkansas Landlord Rights and Responsibilities

Like tenants, landlords in Arkansas also have rights and responsibilities. Under Arkansas landlord-tenant law, landlords have the right to:

  • Collect rent on time from the tenant, every month
  • Charge late fees when a tenant doesn't pay rent
  • Evict a tenant and end the lease if they fail to pay rent
  • Increase rent by any amount, as often as they choose, as there is no rent control laws. As long as they give residents at least 7 days’ notice
  • Evict tenants for a lease violation, nonpayment of rent, foreclosure, or illegal activities
  • Charge and collect security deposits from a tenant
  • Deduct from the security deposit to cover unpaid rent, late fees, or damage. Note that normal wear and tear are not considered damage.
  • Be given written notice if a tenant wishes to terminate the lease early
  • Enter the rented property after providing the residents with an advanced, proper notice

The following are the basic landlord obligations in the state of Arkansas:

  • Keep the lease unit in habitable condition for the tenant
  • Make repairs within 30 days after receiving written notice. If repairs aren’t made promptly, residents have ground to end the lease agreement early
  • Change the locks in cases of domestic abuse or sexual assault, upon request of the affected tenant
  • Comply with all health and building codes that apply to the rental

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Arkansas Fair Housing Laws

The Fair Housing Act ensure that all renters are given equal opportunity when renting a property. While there are federal fair housing regulations, you should also look up your state’s regulations on this matter when renting out your home.

Arkansas Fair Housing Laws prohibit landlords from discriminating against tenants based on protected characteristics like race, color, national origin, religion, sex, familial status, or disabilities. The following actions could be considered acts of housing discrimination under the Fair Housing Act in this state:

  • Encouraging or discouraging certain groups from responding to your listing.
  • Offering different terms, conditions, or privileges to residential tenants of different protected classes
  • Assigning Arkansas tenants to a particular section of a complex based on protected characteristics

Arkansas Security Deposits

Arkansas landlord-tenant laws only recognize a unitary security deposit. This means that there’s no distinction between different types of deposits, such as pet deposits or rental deposits. The maximum amount a landlord can charge for a security deposit is the equivalent of 2 months’ rent. So if one months rent is $1,000, the maximum security deposit you may charge a tenant is $2,000.

Landlords can make deductions on the security deposit to cover unpaid rent, late fees, and damage that exceeds normal wear and tear. Whether or not they’ve made deductions, landlords have up to 60 days after the end of the lease to return the security deposit.

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Arkansas Small Claims Lawsuits

Whether it’s an eviction or another other kind of rental dispute, in Arkansas they can be settled in small claims court. Both landlords and tenants can file cases to settle minor disputes without an attorney if the amount claimed is less than $5,000. The small claims court process typically takes between one to two months.

Arkansas Renters' Rights to Withhold Rent

In most states, tenants have the right to hold rent or make deductions to their next payment if their landlord doesn’t take care of necessary repairs within 30 days. However, this doesn’t happen in Arkansas. A tenant can face eviction if they try to hold rent.

In the state of Arkansas, tenants are not allowed to withhold rent under any circumstances. That said, in the event that a landlord fails to make necessary repairs, tenants in the state can terminate the lease early but cannot exercise the right to “repair and deduct.”

Bottom Line

Knowing your local landlord-tenant laws will keep you and your home protected throughout each tenancy. Plus, it can save you a lot of money and stress in the long run.

If you have any more questions about landlord-tenant laws in Arkansas, contact us at the experts at Pro X Property Management. Our team can help you with anything from ensuring your rental complies with building and safety codes to writing a solid lease agreement. Keeping your investment protected is our number one priority.

Disclaimer: Please note that the information provided in this blog is intended for general guidance and should not be considered a replacement for professional legal advice. It is important to be aware that laws pertaining to property management may change, rendering this information outdated by the time you read it.