property management

What Every Idaho Landlord Needs to Know about Tenant Laws & Rights

By December 19, 2022 No Comments
A two-story gray house

The key to having a good relationship with your landlord is to follow all the guidelines and laws that the State of Idaho has implemented. Many believe that leasing laws are similar throughout the country, yet there are a few states that have specific guidelines that only apply to their region.

Is Idaho a Landlord-Friendly State?

The increasing growth in the state of Idaho has led to a lot of opportunities for the state’s rental housing market. This state provides a fair amount of rights for both parties. Considering the following, Idaho is viewed as a landlord-friendly state. For example, the limited amount of restrictions for the landlord when it comes to fees, evictions, and security deposits has made it a great place for individuals to serve as tenants.

Landlord Right to Entry in Idaho

As a tenant many of your rights will be determined based on the terms of the agreement you signed with your landlord. However, Idaho state laws do not mandate any minimum notice for landlords.

Landlords have the right to enter the home without the permission of any minimum notice. Like mentioned above you can agree to certain terms within the lease agreement to agree upon entry policies. It’s very common for tenants to work out notification policies such as a 48-72 hour notice with their landlords. Regardless of the case, your landlord is allowed by law to enter the premises of your home in cases of emergency.

Small Claims Court in Idaho

Small claims court in Idaho can be a quick and inexpensive way for you to collect. The court procedures are informal and a judge instead of a jury most often decides on the case.

Its important to note that a small claims court in the state of Idaho can hear rent-related cases with a value of $5,000 or less. Additionally, the court does not handle eviction cases, and all written and oral contracts in the state have 5-year and 4-year limits. Since all lease agreements are different, you will want to understand every detail before signing.

Mandatory Disclosures in Idaho

Fortunately for landlords there is only one mandatory disclosure that is required in the state of Idaho as well as all the other 49 states. The law states that any home built prior to 1978 must disclose the risks posed by lead-based paints. Requiring landlords to take action to the following steps:

  • Fill out and attach this lead-based paint disclosure form to the lease agreement.
  • Make sure to provide the tenant with Environmental Protection Agency – approved pamphlet discussing the problem that can arise from lead-based paint.
  • Provide additional information regarding records or reports of the presence or hazards of lead paint in the home.

Changing the Locks in Idaho

Tenants rights allow them to change the locks but it’s recommended that the tenants change the locks once they have notified the landlord and are given the approval. However, there are no specific provisions that state tenants may not change their locks. All things considered, it’s important to get permission from the landlord to ensure the relationship you have built is not demolished.

Landlords have no authority to change the locks. Furthermore, landlords are explicitly advised not to change the locks as a way of evicting tenants.

Essential Amenities That Landlords Are, And Are Not Responsible For

According to Idaho law the landlord is responsible for a variety of amenities that come with every tendency contract. These laws are in place since the landlord is obligated to maintain a healthy and safe environment as well as responsible for making requested repairs within three days. Tenants keep in mind that it is unlaw to withhold rent or use the repair and deduct option unless its to install or repair a smoke detector.

Below is a list of amenities that landlords are responsible for as well as not.

  • Water- Provide hot and cold running water
  • HVAC- Providing HVAC equipment that is running efficiently
  • Plumbing- Provide working plumbing throughout the home
  • Electrical- Provide working electrical wiring for outlets and lighting
  • Garbage removal- Provide trash cans and receptacles for their tenants
  • Smoke detectors- Provide working smoke detectors

In Idaho, its the landlord’s obligation to provide a safe and healthy living environment for its tenants. Which is the reason for the following responsibilities listed above to be provided and operating efficiently. Landlords also have three days to make any repairs to the following amenities at any given time they are not functioning before they violate the law of ID Code 6-320.

What Landlords Can’t do in Idaho

Landlords are unable to terminate a lease agreement based on certain parameters. Below we have provided the reason why tenants are protected from these rights due to the Federal Housing Act.

  • Housing Discrimination- Under the Federal Fair Housing Act, a landlord is prohibited to discriminate based on sex, race, color, religion, disability, familial status, or national origin. In the circumstances of a tenant having a disability, the landlord is required to make accommodations to the rental space or lease agreement.

How Much Can Your Landlord Raise Your Rent in Idaho?

In the state of Idaho, there are no rent control laws restricting landlords. This means that landlords are able to raise the monthly rent of their home with no need to justify the reason behind the decision. However, before landlords raise the monthly rent they must provide a written notice 15 days in advance before the month see’s an increase in rent.

  • Rent Cap in Idaho- Since there is no law restricting the amount of rent a landlord can establish there are limited options a tenant can take into consideration. Therefore, the choices tenants have are to either pay the increased monthly rent, move, or stay and risk being evicted.
  • Security Deposits- In the state of Idaho the landlord must return the security deposit within 21 days after the lease ends and the renter moves out. If a tenant agrees to the terms of an extension of the deposit return period, the landlord must return the security deposit within 30 days.

It is very important that the tenant understand there is no limit to the amount landlords can charge for both the monthly rent and security deposit.

Tenant Responsibilities

When a tenant signs a lease to rent a property, they are agreeing to abide by the rules of that agreement. They must uphold their end of the agreement. Just as landlords have responsibilities to keep and rules they must follow, Idaho tenants also have a legal obligation to abide by the following rules:

  • Pay rent on time
  • Maintain the property
  • Not be a disturbance to others
  • Make small repairs if needed

Remember as tenant your obligation is to follow the rules listed above and if for any reason you break those list of rules then the landlord has authority to evict you of the home.

Evictions Under Idaho Law

(Final Eviction Notice)Title Tag

Eviction laws vary by state. When an Idaho landlord wants to evict a tenant, they must submit an eviction lawsuit to the court. Landlords have the right to evict tenants when certain conditions are met. These conditions may include:

  • Unpaid rent – Idaho tenants that fail to pay rent can be given a 3-day notice to pay the overdue bills. If tenants still refuse to pay, the landlord is able to file a Forcible Entry and Unlawful Detainer.
  • Illegal drug activity – Tenants engaging in illegal drug activity can be given a 3-day notice to quit before filing for eviction.
  • Lease violations – Any activity that does not comply with the lease agreement can result in receiving a 3-day Notice to Cure or Vacate. More serious violations allow landlords to bypass the 3-day notice altogether.
  • Destruction of property (waste) – If a tenant commits waste, landlords may provide tenants with a 3-day Notice to Quit.

It is important for tenants to be in good standing with their landlords by being responsible with the property they are renting. Tenants and landlords both have rights and responsibilities to uphold, but if both tenants do their part, there should be no just cause for eviction.