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Louisiana Landlord-Tenant Laws

Louisiana Landlord Tenant LawsThis article is intended to be an online resource for Louisiana landlords.  We summarize key Louisiana Landlord-Tenant laws that are most applicable to residential rental units.

This article is not qualified legal advice.  Individuals seeking guidance need to work with a legal advisor who is qualified in the jurisdiction.  Louisiana Landlord Tenant Laws and statutes may vary from county to county or city to city, this article provides state level laws and statutes. 

Also, laws and statutes are subject to change and may cause sections of this article to be outdated.  We provide links to assist landlords and tenants to the state statute page for further research.

Click here if you are seeking renters insurance in Louisiana.

 

Quick Facts for Real Estate Investors Considering Louisiana

Louisiana landlord-tenant laws are considered Landlord-friendly.

There are 4.6 million residents in Louisiana.  Major metropolitan markets in Louisiana are:

  1. Alexandria: Estimated population of 153,922, which 37% of residents are renter occupied.  Average rent is $778.
  2. Baton Rogue: Estimated population of 86,947, which 32% of residents are renter occupied.  Average rent is $894.
  3. Houma: Estimated population of 209,001, which 28% of residents are renter occupied.  Average rent is $789.
  4. Lafayette: Estimated population of 490,488, which 31% of residents are renter occupied.  Average rent is $742.
  5. Lake Charles: Estimated population of 199,607, which 30% of residents are renter occupied.  Average rent is $812.
  6. Monroe: Estimated population of 176,441, which 37% of residents are renter occupied.  Average rent is $745.
  7. New Orleans: Estimated population of 1,189,981, which 38% of residents are renter occupied.  Average rent is $965.
  8. Shreveport: Estimated population of 391,516, which 39% of residents are renter occupied.  Average rent is $789.

 

 

 

SECURITY DEPOSIT LAWS IN LOUISIANA

 

Does Louisiana require security deposits? 

Louisiana does not require security deposits.

 

Is a security deposit receipt required in Louisiana? 

Louisiana does not require landlords to provide a receipt of security deposit.  Although it is good practice to provide a receipt.

 

How much security deposit can a landlord charge in Louisiana? 

No Statute.  Louisiana does not state a limit for security deposit.

 

 

Storage Requirements for Security Deposits in Louisiana: 

No Statute.  No requirements for landlords to keep deposits in any type of account.

 

Can security deposits be commingled with other assets in Louisiana? 

Landlords are allowed to commingle.

 

Do landlords have to pay interest on security deposits in Louisiana? 

Louisiana does not require landlords to pay interest on deposits.

 

When must a landlord return the deposit by in Louisiana? 

Landlords must return the security deposits within a month. (Louisiana Rev. St. §§ 3251)

 

When can a landlord in Louisiana withhold security deposit?

At the end of a lease, the landlord is required to return the tenant’s security deposit.  However, landlords may withhold all or portions of a tenant’s security deposit for (Louisiana Rev. St. §§ 3251):

 

  • Unpaid rent and/or fees
  • Damage in excess of normal wear and tear

 

 

 

Nonrefundable fees: 

No Statute.  Landlords can charge any non-refundable fees they deem fit.

 

Pet Deposits and Additional Fees:

No statute for pet deposits.

 

Require written description / itemized list of damages and charges?

Landlords are required to provide written and itemized list of damages.  (Louisiana Rev. St. §§ 3251)

 

What happens to Louisiana landlords that fail to comply returning the security deposit?

Landlords that fail to return or wrongfully withold security deposit will owe the tenant the amount withheld plus $300 or twice the amount withheld, whichever is greater.  (Louisiana Rev. St. §§ 3252)

 

 

 

 

 

 

RENTAL AGREEMENT LAWS IN LOUISIANA

 

Rental agreements required in Louisiana:

Rental agreements are required for leases 12 months or longer.  Leases can be written or oral, although we strongly recommend having a legal lease agreement to prevent future complications.

If you need a lease, Burbz offers an online Louisiana rental lease agreement.

 

What are the required lease provisions in Louisiana?

Louisiana requires certain provisions to be included in the lease agreement.  Besides both the landlord and tenant names, the landlord should also list:

  • Names of landlord and property manager
  • Rent Amount and Due Date
  • Security deposit amount and terms
  • Process for requesting maintenance and repairs
  • Length of the lease agreement
  • Subleasing policy
  • Late Fees and Penalties
  • Landlord’s responsibilities for maintenance and utilities
  • Tenant’s responsibilities for maintenance and utilities
  • Pet policies
  • Cleaning Fees
  • Other fees

 

Landlords cannot include:

  • Tenants waive their rights
  • Tenants cannot be required to pay the property taxes

 

 

 

What are the rental agreement notice requirements in Louisiana: 

Fixed-End or Year-to-Year: At the end of a fixed-end lease, tenant or landlord must provide at least a 30 day notice for termination.  If neither party provides a notice and the tenant stays in the rental for a week after expiration date, the lease will renew with the same terms on a month-to-month lease agreement.  (CC 2720) (CC 2721 (CC 2723)

Month-to-Month: At least 10 days. (CC 2728)  Read our guide on Month-to-Month rent.

Week-to-Week: At least 5 days. (CC 2728)

 

 

 

Does the lease automatically renew in Louisiana? 

Leases require a 30 day notice prior to expiration, however if no notice of termination is provided then the lease will automatically renew if the tenant remains after a week.

 

Rent Increase Notice:

No Statute.  Landlords should include a provision in the lease stating the notice duration.

 

Rent Grace Period for Residential:

Louisiana has no statute on grace periods.  Landlords may proceed with Quit-Or-Pay notices the following day that unpaid rent was due.

 

 

Prepaid Rent:

No Statute.  Landlords may accept prepaid rent.

 

 

 

 

 

 

LATE FEES AND LIMITS IN LOUISIANA

Late Fees for Residential:

Louisiana does not define late fees limits and restrictions.  Landlords may add terms to the lease.

 

 

 

 

LOUISIANA LEASE TERMINATIONS / NOTICES TO QUIT

 

In Louisiana, lease agreements between landlords and tenants can be terminated.  Read our blog for landlords about handling early lease terminations.  Here are the cause and effects:

 

What is the Pay or Quit for Nonpayment requirement in Louisiana?

Louisiana requires a 5 day notice to pay rent, providing a Pay-Or-Quit Notice. (CCP 4701)

 

 

How many days must a landlord allow before terminating for a Lease Violation?

Landlords must provide a 5 day notice to remedy or quit.  (CCP 4701)

 

 

Louisiana allows immediate lease termination if the tenant is responsible for:

No statute.

 

 

 

How many days when terminating for illegal drug-related activities?

No Statute.

 

 

 

 

LOUISIANA LAWS ON REPAIRS

 

Louisiana requires landlords provide a habitable property for tenants to live and enjoy.  There are specific provisions defining how tenants can remedy repairs if the landlord fails to do so.  

How many days must the tenant give for non-emergency repairs? 

Tenants must provide reasonable notice for needed repairs.  (CC 2694)

Can tenant withhold rent for landlords’ failure to provide essential services (i.e. water, heat, etc.)?

No.  Tenants can coordinate the repairs and asked for either reimbursement or deduct from rent.  (CC 2694)

 

 

 

 

 

LOUISIANA LANDLORD RESPONSIBILITIES

What must the landlord provide in good and working order?

Louisiana defines certain responsibilities for landlords, including (CC 2682):

  • Make all repairs and do whatever is necessary to keep the property in a habitable condition
  • To protect the tenant’s peaceful enjoyment of possession

 

 

 

 

 

LOUISIANA TENANT LAWS AND RESPONSIBILITIES

 

Tenant must maintain a fit and habitable premise and is prohibited from intentionally or negligently damaging or removing any part of the premise.  (CC 2683)  Tenants must conduct themselves and others in a manner not to disturb the neighbor’s peaceful enjoyment of their premises.  Alternations to the premises are not allowed.  (CC 2690)

 

 

 

 

 

LOUISIANA EVICTION LAWS

 

Louisiana requires a landlord to file an Eviction Case action to evict a tenant.  (CC 4701)

Landlords may evict tenants for the following:

  • Unpaid rent
  • Breach of lease agreement
  • Damaging the property

 

Can landlords do a ‘self help’ eviction?

In Louisiana, it is illegal for landlords to attempt to evict a tenant not through a court order.

Are landlords allowed to lock out tenants by changing locks?

Landlords cannot change locks. 

Are landlords allowed to turn off utilities?

Landlords cannot change locks. 

 

Do landlords have to make a reasonable attempt to mitigate damages when re-renting the rental unit?

Yes.  Landlords have a duty to mitigate damages. (Louisiana Rev. St. §§ 3260)

 

 

 

LOUISIANA LAWS ON RETALIATION

 

Louisiana laws do not state any retaliation laws, protections or prevention.

 

 

 

 

LAWS ON DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, SEXUAL MISCONDUCT, AND SEXUAL ASSAULT

 

A landlord cannot discriminate against prospective tenants or tenants because they have been a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, rape or stalking.

 

Verify Claim:

No Statue.

 

 

Can a tenant terminate the least if they are a victim of domestic violence: 

Louisiana state law says a tenant with proof of Domestic Violence status is allowed with 30 days notice to terminate the lease without penalty.  (Louisiana Rev. St. §§ 40:506(D))

 

 

Who is responsible for Recovery of Losses: 

No Statute.

 

 

Must Landlords Change Locks:

No Statute.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LOUISIANA LAWS FOR LOCKS AND LANDLORDS

 

Are landlords requested to change locks before new tenants:

No Statute.  Before new tenants moves in, landlords are not required to change the locks.  It is always recommended to do so.

 

 

Are landlords required to install any specific security device:

No Statute.

 

 

Do landlords have to change locks for domestic violence victims:

No Statute.  Although we encourage landlords to allow tenants to change locks; require a set of keys within 48 hours.

 

 

 

 

 

LOUISIANA PET LAWS & PET POLICIES

Louisiana Landlord-Tenant Laws does not have any specific pet laws.  Landlords are legally allowed to create their own pet policies and requirements.  Including tolerance for breeds, size, types, and more.  Read our guide to pet policies.

 

 

Any limitations on pets that landlords can impose?

No Statute.

 

 

 

 

 

 

DO LANDLORDS IN LOUISIANA NEED A RENTAL LICENSE?

 

According to Louisiana Landlord-Tenant Laws, landlords do not need a rental license in Louisiana.

Landlords and owner of a residential rental property do not need to register the property.  Local cities may have different requirements, we recommend you research the local city specific laws.  

 

 

 

 

 

NOTICE OF ENTRY LAWS IN LOUISIANA

Do landlords in Louisiana have to provide notice of entry? 

Louisiana does not require landlords to provide notice.

  • Non-emergency maintenance and repairs
  • Improvements to property
  • Inspections
  • Showing prospective tenants, contractors, mortgagees or buyers.

 

When can a landlord enter without notice:

No Statute.

 

 

Can landlords enter for non-emergency maintenance and repairs?

No Statute.

 

 

Can landlords enter for showings?

No Statute.

 

 

 

Can landlords enter for emergencies without notice?

No Statute.

 

 

Can landlords enter during Tenant’s extended absence?

No Statute.

 

 

Can landlords enter for pesticide use?

No Statute.

 

 

 

 

LOUISIANA SUBLEASE AND ASSIGNMENT PROVISIONS

Landlords should include a clause in the lease agreement to prevent subleasing.  Otherwise, tenants may sublease if there is no clause prohibiting in the lease agreement.

 

 

 

 

TENANT ABANDONED PROPERTY IN LOUISIANA

 

Louisiana Landlord-Tenant Laws does not have any statutes declaring procedure for holding or storing terminated or abandoned tenants possessions.  Generally, landlords should hold onto the property for at least 30 days and attempt to notify the tenant at their last location.  We suggest holding onto the records for at least 12 months.

 

 

 

 

 

REQUIRED RENTAL AGREEMENT DISCLOSURES FOR LOUISIANA LEASES

 

Louisiana Landlord-Tenant Laws requires the following be included with all Rental Agreement Disclosures:

 

Lead Paint Disclosure:  Yes.  Federal law requires every landlord to disclose known information on lead-based paint and hazards.  Landlords must provide this EPA-approved pamphlet.

Mold Guide:  Landlords are required to provide a copy of EPA’s “A Brief Guide to Mold, Moisture and Your Home”.

Foreclose Disclosure:  Landlords are required to notify applicants and tenants within 7 days of receiving a notice of seizure in foreclosure.

Property Disclosure Document:  Landlords must complete a Residential Property Disclosure Form.

 

HELPFUL RESOURCES

Lousiana Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 9:3251 –  §§ 9:3261 – Landlord and Tenant Statutes

Lousiana Civil Code Ann. art. CC 2668 – CC 2729 – Landlord and Tenant Civil Codes

Louisiana Code Civ. Pro. Ann art. CCP 4701 – CCP 4735 – Eviction of Tenants and Occupants

Attorney General’s Guide to Louisiana Landlord & Tenant Laws

Louisiana Housing Alliance

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development – Louisiana

Louisiana Department of Insurance

 

LOUISIANA RELATED COURT INFO & LINKS

Louisiana District Courts

Louisiana Judicial Branch

Louisiana Attorney General

Louisiana State Bar Association

 

 

 

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