State Rules and Regulations for Mississippi Rental Properties and Landlords

Mississippi law (Mississippi Code Title 89) states that if rent is paid in a timely manner in exchange for inhabiting property, a landlord-tenant relationship is established (even without a written lease). Under this relationship, tenants have the right to pursue housing without discrimination and the right to habitable premises.

Mississippi landlords also have rights such as the right to collect rent and the right to reimbursement for damages to property that exceed wear and tear.

Mississippi Official Rules and Regulations

Official Code: 

Unofficial Code:

Security Deposits and Mississippi Regulations

  • Security Deposit Maximum: No statute is given, but in most cases, the amount considered to be reasonable for a security deposit, is the equivalent of one months’ rent.
  • Security Deposit Interest: No statute is available
  • Nonrefundable Fees: No statute is available
  • Separate Security Deposit Bank Account: No statute is available
  • Pet Deposits and Additional Fees: No statute is available
  • Deadline for Returning Security Deposit: Pursuant to 89-8-21(3), the landlord must return what is left of the deposit after any repairs or other costs are deducted within 45 days of termination of the lease.
  • Require Itemized List/Written Description of Damages and Charges: The landlord must submit an itemized list of all damages and any subsequent charges along with the remainder of the security deposit when it is returned.
  • Record Keeping of Deposit Withholdings: No statute given
  • Receipt of Deposit: No statute given
  • Failure to Comply: Pursuant to 89-8-21(4), the landlord may be forced to pay up to $200 if he fails to comply with the rental agreement and does not return the tenant’s security deposit in the allotted amount of time.

Lease, Rent & Fees Under Mississippi Law

  • Rent Is Due: As stated in the lease.
  • Rent Increase Notice: No statute.
  • Rent Grace Period: No statute.
  • Late Fees: No statute. Must be stated in the lease.
  • Prepaid Rent: No statute.
  • Returned Check Fees: $30 (§ 97-19-75(5)).
  • Tenant Allowed to Withhold Rent for Failure to Provide Essential Services (Water, Heat, etc.): No statute.
  • Tenant Allowed to Repair and Deduct Rent: Allowed. If the landlord does not repair the defect specified in a 30-day written notice, the tenant may do the repair and then be entitled to reimbursement, which can be offset against future rent, as long as the amount is no more than the “usual and customary charge for such repairs.” See statute for additional provisions and restrictions. (§ 89-8-15)
  • Landlord Allowed to Recover Court and Attorney Fees: No statute.
  • Landlord Must Make a Reasonable Attempt to Mitigate Damages to Lessee, including an Attempt to Re-rent: No statute.
  • Abandonment/Early Termination Fee: No statute,

Notices and Entry Under Mississippi Law

  • Notice to Terminate Tenancy – Fixed End Date Lease: No notice is needed in a fixed end date lease as the lease expires on the final date of the lease.
  • Notice to Terminate Tenancy – Year to Year Lease: No statute is given
  • Notice to Terminate Tenancy – Month to Month Lease: The landlord must give 30 days written notice prior to the termination date, pursuant to 89-8-19(3).
  • Notice to Terminate Tenancy – Week to Week Lease: The landlord must give the tenant 7 days written notice prior to the termination date according to 89-8-19(2).
  • Tenant Holdover: No statute given
  • Notice of Date/Time of Move-Out Inspection: No statute given, but a written notice of the date and time of a scheduled move-out inspection is often provided to the tenant. This allows time for the tenant to make arrangements to attend the inspection and dispute any possible damages they feel were not due to their negligence.
  • Lease Terminations/Notices to Quit:

    • Lease Termination for Nonpayment: Pursuant to 89-8-13(3), the landlord can terminate the lease agreement if the tenant has not complied with all stipulations of the lease including nonpayment of rent. According to 89-7-27, the landlord can terminate a lease agreement, if the tenant has not paid rent within three days of the due date. However, if the tenant pays the rent owed within three days of receiving the written notice to terminate tenancy letter, the eviction is stopped and the lease remains in effect.
    • Termination for Lease Violation: Both the landlord and the tenant have the right to terminate the lease if a violation has occurred. 30 days written notice must be provided by the nonbreaching party to the party who is in violation of the lease, pursuant to 89-8-13(3).
    • Termination of Lease for Falsification of Information: No statute given
    • Immediate Lease Termination: Immediate termination of the lease will be considered if the landlord or tenant can prove the other party is in violation of the lease and their activity can result in potential damage or unsafe conditions for the tenants.
  • Required Notice Before Entry: No statute given. This varies from complex to complex, but is often included within the lease agreement in an attempt to be fair to the tenant and ensure their privacy at all times.
  • Entry Allowed with Notice for Maintenance and Repairs (non-emergency): No statute given, but is often included within the lease agreement. Written notice is often provided out of courtesy to the tenant as a means to ensure that their right to privacy is respected.
  • Entry Allowed with Notice for Showings: No statute given, but a specific amount of time can be written into the lease agreement. The universal time often included in most lease agreements is 48 hours, written notice prior to the showing of the apartment to a prospective applicant.
  • Emergency Entry Allowed without Notice: No statute given, but this can be included within the lease agreement if the landlord chooses to exercise this option.
  • Entry Allowed During Tenant’s Extended Absence: No statute given, but can be included within the lease agreement. This is often included within the lease agreement so the landlord can be assured that there has been no damage to the dwelling either by the tenant or due to the malfunction of an appliance or other fixture.
  • Notice to Tenants for Pesticide Use: No statute given, but is often included within the lease agreement.
  • Lockouts Allowed: No statute given
  • Utility Shut-offs Allowed: No statute given

Disclosures and Miscellaneous Notes Under Mississippi Law

  • Name and Addresses: No statute.
  • Copy of the Lease: No statute.
  • Domestic Violence Situations: No statute. An Abuse, Rape, and Domestic Violence Aid and Resource Collection (AARDVARC) provides contact information for Mississippi domestic violence advocates and support resources by county.
  • Landlord’s Duties: (§ 89-8-23)
    • Compliance: Comply with the requirements of applicable building and housing codes that materially affect health and safety;
    • Maintenance: Maintain the dwelling unit, its plumbing, and heating and/or cooling system in substantially the same condition as at the inception of the lease, with reasonable wear and tear excluded, unless the dwelling unit, its plumbing, heating and/or cooling system is damaged or impaired as a result of the deliberate or negligent actions of the tenant.
  • Tenant’s Duties: (§ 89-8-25)
    • Cleanliness: Keep the premises as clean and safe as the condition of the premises permit;
    • Trash: Dispose of all garbage and other waste in a clean and safe manner;
    • Plumbing: Keep all plumbing fixtures in the dwelling unit or used by the tenant as clean as their condition permits;
    • Appliances: Use in a reasonable manner all electrical, plumbing, sanitary, heating, ventilating, air-conditioning and other facilities and appliances including elevators in the premises;
    • Refrain from Damage: Not deliberately or negligently destroy, deface, damage, impair or remove any part of the premises or knowingly permit any person to do so; and
    • Quiet Enjoyment: Conduct himself and require other persons on the premises with tenant consent to conduct themselves in a manner that will not disturb neighbors’ peaceful enjoyment of the premises;
    • Notify of Potential Damage: Inform the landlord of any condition that they know of that may cause damage to the premises;
    • Maintenance: Maintain the unit in the same condition, except for reasonable wear and tear, and comply with the requirements of applicable building and housing codes materially affecting health and safety;
    • Lawful Activity: Not engage in any illegal activity upon the leased premises as documented by a law enforcement agency.
  • Retaliation: Landlord must not try to evict the tenant in retaliation for the tenant exercising their rights under the rental law or for giving proper notice of conditions that require remedy by the landlord. Read § 89-8-17 for more information.
  • Lead Disclosure: 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.

Evictions in Mississippi

Mississippi gives landlords broad authority to evict tenants. The most common reasons for eviction in Mississippi are:

  1. Nonpayment of rent – If rent is late, landlords can give a 3-day Notice to Pay or Quit. If the tenant does not pay within 3 days, the landlord can engage in eviction proceedings. Landlords are free to give tenants a grace period for late rent, either in a lease agreement or at their discretion.
  2. Violation of lease term – If a tenant violates the terms of their lease or does not abide by their responsibilities as a tenant, landlords can issue a 30-day Notice to Remedy. If the terms are not met or the problem is not remediable, then landlords can proceed with eviction.
  3. Illegal acts – Mississippi law does not specify guidelines for eviction due to illegal acts. Thus, Mississippi landlords can establish their own eviction notice policies for documented illegal acts.

Mississippi landlords can evict “at-will” tenants at their own discretion. They must still give a 30-day notice to quit to non-leased tenants.

Mississippi landlords are also prohibited from evicting tenants for discriminatory reasons against protected classes, and cannot evict tenants in retaliation.

Business Licenses

  • Business License Required: No statewide statute, but local cities and counties may have regulations and requirements. Check with your local governing authority.

Mandatory Disclosures in Mississippi

Mississippi landlords are only required to make one disclosure to tenants:

  1. Lead-based paint. Houses built before 1978 must disclose concentrations of lead used in paints.

Helpful Links

State Agencies & Regulatory Bodies

Housing Authorities

Realtor and Landlord/Tenant Associations

    These resources are for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. Landlords and Tenants are encouraged to seek specific legal advice for any of the issues as found in this blog.

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