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Arizona Late Fees, Termination for Nonpayment of Rent, and Other Rent Rules

Find out Arizona rent rules, including limits on late fees, notice requirements for rent increases, and notice required for terminating a tenancy for nonpayment of rent.

Your lease or rental agreement should spell out your landlord’s key rent rules, including:

  • the amount of rent (there are no limits to how much a landlord can charge in Arizona since there are no communities with rent control in the state)
  • where rent is due (such as by mail to the landlord’s business address)
  • when rent is due (including what happens if the rent due date falls on a weekend date or holiday)
  • how rent should be paid (usually check, money order, cash, and/or credit card)
  • the amount of notice landlords must provide to increase rent
  • the amount of any extra fee if your rent check bounces, and
  • the consequences of paying rent late, including late fees and termination of the tenancy.

State laws in Arizona cover several of these rent-related issues, including limits on late fees, the amount of notice a landlord must provide to increase rent under a month-to-month tenancy, and how much time a tenant has to pay rent or move before a landlord can file for eviction.

Arizona Rules on Late Fees

Rent is legally due on the date specified in your lease or rental agreement (usually the first of the month). If you don’t pay rent when it is due, the landlord may begin charging you a late fee. Under Arizona law, late fees must be set forth in a written rental agreement and must be reasonable. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 33-1368(B) (2020).)

Arizona Rules on Bounced Check Fees

Arizona allows recipients of bounced checks (such as landlords) to collect a service fee of no more than $25, plus the amount charged by the landlord’s bank for processing the check. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 44-6852 (2020).)

Amount of Notice Arizona Landlords Must Give Tenants to Increase Rent

Arizona landlords must give tenants at least 30 days’ notice (in writing) to increase rent or change another term of a month-to-month rental agreement. If you have a long-term lease, however, landlords may not increase the rent until the lease ends and a new tenancy begins—unless the lease itself provides for an increase. Landlords may, however, adopt new rules and regulations that don’t substantially modify the rental agreement after giving tenants 30 days’ notice. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 33-1342, 33-1375 (2020).)

Rent Increases as Retaliation or Discrimination

Arizona landlords may not raise the rent in a discriminatory manner—for example, only for members of a certain race. Also, Arizona landlords may not use a rent increase in retaliation against you for exercising a legal right—for example, in response to your legitimate complaint to a local housing agency about a broken heater. Retaliation is presumed if the landlord takes certain actions within 6 months of the tenant’s act. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 33-1381 (2020).)

Arizona State Laws on Termination for Nonpayment of Rent

States set specific rules and procedures for ending a tenancy when a tenant has not paid the rent. Arizona landlords must give tenants at least five days in which to pay the rent or move. If the tenant does neither, the landlord can file for eviction. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 33-1368 (2020).)

Arizona Guide to Tenant Rights

For an overview of tenant rights when it comes to paying rent under Arizona landlord-tenant law, check out the Tenant’s Rights and Responsibilities Handbook, provided on the Arizona Attorney General’s website.

Other Resources

Federal and state statutes, as well as local ordinances, set out rules and procedures landlords and tenants must follow. These statutes and ordinances can change, so checking them is always a good idea. How courts interpret and apply the law can also change. These are just some of the reasons to consult a local landlord-tenant attorney if you have any questions or are (or plan to be) involved in a lawsuit. The Arizona State Legislature’s website is a good source for finding the most recent state statutes, and the Cornell Law School’s Legal Information Institute is a good source for federal statutes. Most of the time, you can find applicable local ordinances on your city’s or county’s website.

Also, visit the Laws and Legal Research section of Nolo for advice on finding and reading statutes and court decisions.

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