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The key to having a good landlord-tenant relationship is to follow all the guidelines and rules stated by Idaho law. Leasing guidelines may seem similar throughout the country, but there are some states that include particular rules that only apply to their area.

Idaho has been recently considered a fast-growing state, meaning that there's a lot of opportunity for the state's rental housing market. Overall, this state provides a decent amount of rights for landlords and tenants.

In this article, we're going to take a look at the Idaho landlord-tenant law so that you can get a clearer idea of what you can and cannot do while drafting a rental agreement for your property. If you have specific doubts about a rental case in your area, you may seek legal advice from an expert.

What Are Landlord-Tenant Laws?

These are a set of rules that regulate a leasing relationship between the landlord and tenant. Some of these rules are already imposed by Idaho law, whereas other additional clauses may be included by the landlord to fit their leasing needs.

In the state of Idaho, a lease agreement must be written if the lease is longer than one year. However, it's always recommended by property management experts always to include written leases to avoid legal problems in the future.

Generally, a lease agreement should include the following information as a foundation of the document:

  • Information about the landlord and tenant.
  • Description of the leased property.
  • Subleasing terms (If applicable).
  • Duration of the lease.
  • Rent cost, late fees, grace periods, etc.
  • Security deposit clauses.
  • The person responsible for repairs and maintenance jobs.

Remember that Idaho landlords are allowed to include as many extra clauses as they need, as long as they're compliant with the Idaho code.

Is Idaho Considered a Landlord-Friendly State?

Yes! This state is considered landlord-friendly since there is a limited amount of restrictions for the landlord when it comes to fees, evictions, and security deposits.

What Are Landlords' Rights and Responsibilities?

According to Idaho law, there's a set of rights and obligations that come with every tenancy agreement. These terms must be followed at all times to promote a healthy relationship between the parties involved.

Rights

Idaho landlords have the legal right to collect rent when it's due, maintain their property in good repair, and use the security deposit to cover damages that exceed normal wear and tear.

Responsibilities

The landlord must keep their property compliant with regular housing parameters in Idaho. Additionally, they have to provide any requested repairs within a 3-day notice. If landlords in Ohio fail to do this, the tenant may seek alternative options to fix the issues.

What Are Tenants' Rights and Responsibilities?

The Idaho tenant also has a set of guidelines that they have to comply with during their tenancy. It's important to note that the tenant must agree on these terms before signing the lease, and from that point on, they're responsible for keeping everything in good condition.

Rights

Tenants have the legal right to live in a place that complies with local housing requirements. On the other hand, they may request repairs from their landlord if there are any significant damages to the property. If the landlord doesn't comply within a reasonable amount of time, the tenant may seek expert help.

Responsibilities

The Idaho tenant has an obligation to follow these guidelines:

  • Pay rent on time.
  • Keep the property in good condition.
  • Not disturb tenants or neighbors.
  • Make small repairs (If needed).

Idaho Landlord-Tenant Law - Clauses

The following is a list of general clauses that Idaho landlords must include in their written lease to promote a healthy leasing relationship that complies with state laws.

All these clauses are thoroughly explained in the Idaho Code (§§ 55-301 - §§55-308).

Rent Payments

There aren't many regulations as to what landlords need to do for rent payments. Overall, they can charge any amount of rent they consider appropriate since the state of Idaho doesn't impose any rent control laws.

It's important to note that landlords in Idaho can increase rent as much as they want. However, they're required to send a 15-day notice to the tenant before they do it.

Rent Fees and Grace Periods

State laws don't limit landlords in Idaho as to the amount of the late fees they charge. However, they must always be a reasonable amount. Bounced check rent fees are usually limited to three times the value of the check or $100.

As for grace periods, there aren't any obligations from the Idaho Code, meaning that landlords may charge rent fees as soon as the rent goes past its due date.

Security Deposits

A security deposit is a safety measure that the landlord may ask to cover unexpected damages and unpaid bills when the tenant leaves the property. According to landlord-tenant laws in Idaho, the landlord may collect any amount of security deposit as they consider appropriate.

While it's not recommended by the Idaho Code to provide a receipt for the security deposit, it's considered good practice to do so.

The landlord must return the deposit within 21 days of the tenant leaving (This period can be extended to 30 days). If the landlord doesn't do this with reason, tenants may file a claim. On the other hand, if the landlord plans to withhold the deposit partially, they must send an itemized list of everything they're withholding. Keep in mind that landlords aren't allowed to withhold a deposit to cover required repairs for damages considered "normal" wear and tear. However, they may use it to cover damages that exceed these criteria.

Lease Termination and Evictions

When it comes to a lease termination in Idaho, notice should be sent by tenants depending on the type of lease they're having. Here's an overview of the minimum notice required in each case:

  • Weekly Lease - Non-applicable.
  • Monthly Lease - One month of notice.
  • Quarterly Lease - Non-applicable.
  • Yearly Lease - One month of notice.

Alternatively, tenants can break the lease before it ends in the following cases:

  • Active military duty.
  • Landlord harassment.
  • Early termination clauses.
  • Unacceptable living conditions.

As for evictions, landlords have the right to evict a tenant for any of the following reasons:

  • Breaches in the Lease - Three days' notice of eviction or payment.
  • Criminal Activity. - Three days' notice of eviction or curing.
  • Nonpayment of Rent - 24 hours' notice of eviction.

Landlords must give at-will tenants 30 days of written notice before they get evicted from the property. However, fixed-term tenants may not receive any kind of eviction notice if the landlord doesn't consider it necessary. Landlords must not evict a tenant in retaliation.

See our full guide on the eviction process and laws for Idaho.

eviction process and laws for Idaho

Housing Discrimination in Idaho

According to the Idaho Human Rights Commission and the Fair Housing Act, landlords must not discriminate against their tenant based on their familial status, color, race, national origin, religion, or disability.

If the tenant feels that they have become a victim of housing discrimination in Idaho, they can file a complaint online.

Miscellaneous Clauses

Small Claims Court

A small claims court in this state can hear rent-related cases with a value of $5,000 or less. It's important to note that these courts don't handle eviction cases.

Conclusion

The Idaho Code is fairly flexible with landlord-tenant guidelines, meaning that the landlord can include as many clauses for the tenant in the lease as they consider appropriate (As long as they're compliant with the law). All leases are different, so keep an eye out for every detail before signing up the rental document.

Overall, both parties have the right to live in a rental property that complies with general state guidelines, so if everyone can comply with the basic instructions stated on the rental document, the leasing relationship is likely to be positive.

If you have any additional questions regarding laws for landlords and tenants in the state, or you want to draft a lease that fits your case, make sure to seek help from a lawyer or real estate manager.

FAQs

Does the landlord have to disclose information about authorized agents?

The landlord is required to provide information on all the parties involved in the rental agreement, including names and addresses. If the landlord or tenant plans to adjust the lease to include another person, they must give advanced notice.

Does information about lead paint have to be disclosed in Idaho?

If the landlords' property was built before 1978, they're required to provide their tenant information regarding concentrations of lead paint in the place. This information can be included in the rental agreement.

Additionally, the landlord can provide their tenants with a copy of EPA's pamphlet for more detailed information.

How is lock changing controlled in Idaho?

Tenant rights allow them to change the locks if they feel threatened by another person. However, it's considered good practice to send a written notice to the landlord before changing the locks to avoid any future disputes. Keep in mind that landlords must not evict their tenant as a form of eviction.

Does the landlord have the right to enter the property?

According to landlord-tenant laws specified in the Idaho Code, there's no required notice clause for the landlord. This means that they're assumed to enter without permission. However, most tenants work out notification policies with their landlord.

Regardless of the case, the landlord can enter the property without providing written notice in emergency cases.

Resources

  1. Landlord and Tenant Manual (Published by the Office of the Attorney General)
  2. Tenant Rights, Laws, and Protections
  3. Fair Housing Forum of Idaho
David Bitton

David is the co-founder & CMO of DoorLoop, a best-selling author, legal CLE speaker, and real estate investor. When he's not hanging with his two children, he's writing articles here!