Idaho Landlord Tenant Laws

This is a summary of Idaho Landlord-Tenant laws that apply to residential (non-commercial) rentals. These references were compiled from the Idaho Code and various online sources to serve as a reference and for people wanting to learn about Idaho landlord-tenant laws, Idaho eviction laws, and Idaho renters’ rights. 

However, this guide is not comprehensive and PayRent does not warrant the accuracy of this information. Statutes can change any time the state legislature passes a new law. Additionally, counties and cities may have different regulations. Given its limitations, this guide is not an adequate substitute for legal advice from a knowledgeable lawyer.  If you are dealing with a landlord-tenant issue, you seek guidance from a qualified attorney. If you need help finding an attorney, we’ve included a list of attorney referral services in this guide.

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Rules and Regulations Governing Idaho Landlord-Tenant Laws

Idaho Lease Terms Provisions

Idaho Security Deposit Laws

  • What is the maximum allowable security deposit?

There is no Idaho law limiting security deposits.

  • Are security deposits required to earn interest?

No. There is no Idaho law requiring security deposits to earn interest.

  • Do landlords need to store security deposits in a separate bank account? 

No. There is no Idaho law requiring security deposits to be stored in a separate bank account. 

  • Are non-refundable fees, such as pet fees, prohibited?

No. There is no Idaho law forbidding non-refundable fees or limiting the amount that landlords can charge. 

  • How long do landlords have to return security deposits?

21 days if no time is fixed by agreement, but always within 30 days. (Idaho Code §§ 6-321

  • Can landlords withhold security deposits?

Yes. Landlords can withhold amounts necessary to cover the contingencies specified in the deposit arrangement beyond normal wear and tear. “Normal wear and tear” means that deterioration which occurs as a result of the use for which the rental unit is intended and without negligence, carelessness, accident, or misuse or abuse of the premises or contents by tenant or members of tenant’s household, or his/her invitees or guests. (Idaho Code § 6-321

  • Are landlords required to itemize damages and fees deducted from security deposits?

Yes. Landlords must provide a signed statement itemizing the amounts withheld by the landlord, the reason(s) for withholding, and a detailed list of expenditures made. (Idaho Code § 6-321

  • Do landlords have to issue receipts upon receiving security deposits?

No. There is no Idaho law requiring landlords to issue receipts for security deposits.

  • Are there any specific requirements for record-keeping for deposit withholdings?

No. There is no Idaho law specifying record-keeping requirements.

  • What happens when a landlord does not return a security deposit within the required timeframe?

A tenant may file an action against a landlord for damages and specific performance after providing 3 days’ written notice to return the deposit.  (Idaho Code § 6-320

Idaho Rent Laws

  • Is there a cap on how much landlords can charge for rent? (rent control)

No. There are no rent control laws in Idaho.

  • Does rent need to be paid using a certain method of payment?

No. There is no Idaho law requiring a certain payment method for rent.

Fees

  • Can landlords charge late fees when rent is late?

Yes. There is no Idaho law forbidding late fees or limiting the amount that landlords can charge.

  • Do landlords have to allow for a grace period for paying rent before charging late fees?

No. There is no Idaho law requiring a grace period before assessing late fees.

  • Can landlords charge application fees?

Yes. There is no Idaho law forbidding application fees or limiting the amount that landlords can charge.

  • Can landlords charge returned check fees?

Yes. Landlords can sue in small claims court to recover the amount of the check, plus either $100 or three times the check amount, whichever is greater. (Idaho Code § 1-2301A

Idaho Landlord-Tenant Relations

Notices

  • Are landlords required to provide tenants with notice of rent increases between lease terms?

Yes. Landlords must give 15 days notice before changing the rent in a month-to-month lease.   (Idaho Code § 55-307

  • Are landlords required to provide tenants with notice of pesticide use on the property?

No. There is no Idaho law requiring landlords to provide tenants with notice of pesticide use on the rental property.

  • What notice is required to terminate a fixed-end lease?

No notice is required — the lease ends on the date stated in the lease.

  • What notice is required to terminate a tenancy at will?

Either the landlord or the tenant can terminate the tenancy with 1 months’ written notice. (Idaho Code § 55-208

  • Is notice of the date and time of the move out inspection required?

There is no statute in Idaho law covering this issue. 

Idaho Rental Entry Provisions

  • When can landlords enter the rental premises with notice?

There is no statute in Idaho law covering this issue. 

  • What notice must a landlord give a tenant before entering the rental unit?

There is no Idaho law requiring landlords to give tenants notice of entry.

  • When can landlords enter the rental premises without providing notice to their tenants?

There is no statute in Idaho law covering this issue. 

Landlord’s Duties (Idaho Code §§ 6-320(a)

  • Landlords must provide reasonable waterproofing and weather protection of the premises.
  • Landlords must maintain in good working order electrical, plumbing, heating, ventilating, cooling, or sanitary facilities supplied by the landlord.
  • Landlords must not maintain the premises in a manner hazardous to the health or safety of the tenant
  • Landlords must return a security deposit as and when required by law.
  • Landlords must not breach any term or provision of the lease or rental agreement materially affecting the health and safety of the tenant, whether explicitly or implicitly a part thereof.
  • Landlords must install approved smoke detectors in each dwelling unit, to include mobile homes, under the landlord’s control. (Idaho Code § 6-320(a)

Tenant’s Duties

  • Tenants must safeguard the rental property and make sure damage does not occur. (Idaho Code § 6-321

Required Landlord Disclosures

  • Before renting pre-1978 property, landlords must disclose all known lead paint hazards. Landlords must also provide tenants, as an attachment to a written lease, with an information pamphlet on lead-based paint hazards.  (16 CFR 1303, 42 U.S. Code § 4852d) . If the landlord fails to disclose all known lead paint hazards, the landlord can face fines of up to $19,507 for each violation (24 CFR 30.65).

Idaho Renters’ Rights

  • What are Idaho renters’ rights if landlords breach their duties? (See Landlord’s Duties)

A tenant may file an action against a landlord for damages and specific performance after providing 3 days written notice to cure the breach.  (Idaho Code § 6-320

  • Are tenants allowed to withhold rent for needed repairs or other breaches of their landlords’ duties?

No. There is no Idaho law allowing tenants to withhold rent to enforce their legal rights. 

  • What are the protections for tenants against retaliation from their landlords for exercising their Idaho renter’s rights?

Idaho law prohibits landlords from terminating a tenancy, refusing to renew a tenancy, increasing rent, decreasing services, or threatening to bring an action for repossession of a lot as retaliation against the resident because the tenant has:

  • Complained about a violation of a building, safety, or health code or regulation to a governmental agency responsible for enforcing the code or regulation.
  • Complained to the landlord concerning the maintenance or condition of the community, the rent charged, or rules.
  • Organized, become a member of or served as an official in a community resident association, or similar organization, at a local, regional, state, or national level.
  •  Retained counsel or an agent to represent his or her interests. (Idaho Code §§ 55-2015

Idaho Eviction Laws

  • What notice do Idaho eviction laws require that landlords provide tenants before starting the eviction process?
    • For evictions based on non-payment of rent or violation of lease terms, the landlord must give 3 days’ notice to remedy the breach before starting the eviction process. (Idaho Code § 6-303(2)); (Idaho Code § 6-303(3)
  • For evictions based on waste or illegal drug activity, landlords must give a 3-day notice of termination of the lease before starting the eviction process. Landlords do not have to permit the tenant to cure these types of breaches.  (Idaho Code § 6-303(4)); (Idaho Code § 6-303(5))
  • For evictions based on a holdover tenancy, landlords must provide whatever notice is required for the tenancy. If the tenant remains on the rental property after the termination date, the landlord can begin the eviction process without providing additional notice. (Idaho Code § 6-303(1)
  • Do Idaho eviction laws allow landlords to use “self-help eviction” methods, such as locking a tenant out of the rental unit or shutting off the utilities? 

No. There is no Idaho law permitting self-help evictions.

COVID-19 Changes to Idaho Landlord-Tenant Laws

Squatter’s rights in Idaho

Under Homestead Act of 1862, individuals (squatters) can possess the property if they have lived there for a specific period of time, done so publicly, made repairs to the property, have deed to the property and have paid rent or taxes on this property.

Idaho has no specific laws recognizing squatters.

The squatter can claim adverse possession if he/she has continuously occupied the property and paid all taxes, state, county or municipal, for 20 years. The land is deemed to be possessed and occupied if it has been protected by a substantial enclosure, and usually cultivated or improved. (Idaho Code § 5-210). 

Related Links

Government 

Legal Aid

Idaho Legal Aid Services, Inc.

Attorney Referral Services

Realtor and Landlord-Tenant Associations

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