To help you familiarize yourself with Tennessee landlord tenant laws, we have compiled a list of the most common questions regarding these laws, as well as the answers to them and where you can look for more information.
How much can a landlord raise rent in Tennessee?
There are no regulations in Tennessee landlord tenant laws regarding rent raises. Therefore, a landlord can raise the rent as much as they want.
Can a landlord enter property without permission in Tennessee?
A landlord may enter a rental property without the tenant’s permission in times of emergency, with a court order, if the tenant is absent for more than seven days, or if the tenant has abandoned the property.
Outside of the previously mentioned situations, a landlord may not enter without permission. However, the tenant should grant the landlord access to the rental unit for repairs, inspections, and tours.
More reading: Tennessee Code Title 66. Property § 66-28-403.
Is the landlord responsible for pest control in Tennessee?
There is no statute in the Tennessee landlord tenant laws that states that landlords are responsible for pest control. However, landlords are responsible for providing services that affect the health and safety of the tenant. So, if the pest outbreak is due to natural circumstances rather than the tenant, the landlord should supply pest control.
Along with state laws, each lease should state whether the landlord or tenant is responsible for pest control. So, you should refer to the lease if pest problems occur.
More reading: Tennessee Code Title 66. Property § 66-28-502.
How long does a landlord have to fix something in Tennessee?
Landlords must keep rental units in a clean and safe condition by providing essential services such as heat, electricity, etc. Upon receiving written notice from a tenant, a landlord has 14 days to fix the problem.
If a landlord does not comply within 14 days, the tenant has the right to complete one of the following:
- Obtain essential services and deduct these costs from their rent
- Deduct the cost of missing unsupplied services from their rent
- Obtain other housing until the problem is fixed, and deduct the cost of substitute housing from rent
What are landlords’ responsibilities with security deposits in Tennessee?
According to Tennessee landlord tenant laws, tennessee landlords can collect any amount for a security deposit, but one month’s rent is standard. The money for the security deposit must be held in a separate bank account and the tenant must be informed of the name and location of this account.
The landlord must inform a tenant of their right to be present at the inspection and then inspect the property within 10 days of lease termination. The landlord and tenant (if present) must provide a list of necessary repairs and estimated costs. After completion, the landlord must mail this list to the tenant if they were not at the inspection. Landlords can take money out of the security deposit for damages as well as unpaid rent.
A landlord must return owed portions of a security deposit within 30 days after lease termination. If the landlord contacts a tenant and the tenant does not collect their money with 60 days, the landlord can keep the security deposit.
More reading: Tennessee Code Title 66. Property § 66-28-301
What are the laws on eviction in Tennessee?
It’s important to note that different Tennessee counties are governed by different statutes. Counties with more than 75,000 residents must follow the laws outlined in Tennessee’s Landlord-Tenant Act, The Uniform Residential Landlord and Tenant Act. All other counties are governed by other Tennessee code. However, Tennesse eviction laws are similar for all counties.
Tennessee landlords can evict a tenant if the tenant does any of the following:
- Fails to pay rent
- Damages the rental unit beyond normal wear and tear
- Violates lease agreement
- Conducts a violent act
No matter the reason, a landlord must provide a notice to vacate and supply the tenant with a chance to remedy the reason for eviction. If the tenant does not or cannot fix the problem, the landlord can file an eviction lawsuit.
How long does it take to evict a tenant in Tennessee?
For counties with more than 75,000 residents, a landlord must provide a 14-day notice before evicting a tenant for the following reasons:
- Tenant fails to pay rent
- Tenant or person on property conducts a violent act
- Tenant or other parties damage rental unit
- Tenant breaks lease agreement
For counties with less than 75,000 residents, the amount of notice a landlord must give a tenant depends on the cause for eviction.
- Tenant fails to pay rent or damages property: 14-day notice
- Tenant otherwise breaks lease agreement 30-day notice
- Tenant engages in drug-related criminal activity or commits a violent act: 3-day notice
If the tenant has not remedied the problem during the provided period, the landlord may continue with the eviction lawsuit.
Is Tennessee landlord-friendly?
Yes, Tennessee is landlord-friendly. Some reasons include the lack of rent control, quick eviction process, and lack of limits on security deposits.
Resources for Complete Tennessee Landlord Tenant Laws:
- Tennessee Code Title 66. Property. Chapter 28. Uniform Residential Landlord and Tenant Act
- HUD – Local Tenant Rights, Laws, and Protections: Tennessee
Read more of our state landlord tenant law guides here.
Note: This content is not intended to substitute, replace, or be construed as professional legal advice. It is for referential purposes only and not meant to replace the advice of your legal counsel, legal representation, and or lawyer. Please consult your professional legal representation or lawyer to be sure your lease is compliant with any state and/or federal laws.