Landlords have been requiring security deposits from tenants for decades. And for decades, tenants have been fighting to get their security deposits back. Over 21 million Americans move out of a rental each year, which means there are a lot of people that have had to fight.1 Given the scale of this problem, many tenants complained to state lawmakers. The result is that in every American state today, laws exist to help tenants get their security deposits back from their landlords.
Each state has their own unique laws around security deposits. A tenant in Oregon has different rights than a tenant in Arkansas. But there are some legal rights that tend to appear across the different states, which we detail below.