New Mexico has rich history and stunning views. If you’re eyeing this state as the home for your next real estate venture, keep reading to learn some of the most important landlord-tenant laws that willregulate your tenant management, fee charges, and more.
Rent and Fees
As a landlord, there are a variety of reasons and circumstances in which you charge your tenants fees. Some of these fees, such as late fees, are regulated and cannot be more than 10% of the tenant’s monthly rent. Application fees, grace periods, and NSF/bounced check fees are not regulated in New Mexico. As a landlord, you can use your discretion to decide what to charge in these circumstances. As long as the fees are reasonable, they will most likely hold up in court.
It’s important to note that tenants have the right to withhold rent under certain circumstances in New Mexico. If the landlord does not maintain habitability of the unit in a way that affects the tenant’s health and safety, the tenant can give seven days’ notice and withhold one third of the pro-rata daily rent. If the property’s condition is uninhabitable, the tenant can completely withhold rent until the landlord fixes the issue. Tenants should not repair and deduct as the state of New Mexico does not honor this policy.
New Mexico rental lawonly says that landlords can charge a reasonable amount for security deposits. However, if the lease agreement is over one year, the security deposit cannot be more than one month’s rent.
In the case that the tenant’s security deposit exceeds one month’s rent, the landlord must pay interest on this amount to the tenant each year. The interest should be equal to the passbook interest permitted to savings and loan associations.
Landlords are not required to keep security deposits in a separate bank account, but they are required to return the amount within 30 days after the lease terminates. Landlords may withhold funds for unpaid rent and fees, repairs, and other noncompliance from the tenant. They may not withhold funds for regular wear and tear on the unit. However, any deductions must be itemized and returned to the tenant with what’s left of their security deposit.
Especially if you’re a new landlord, being familiar with the ins and outs of eviction law is crucial. Evictions should be reserved for serious defaults or lease violations since you are removing someone from their home. Laws in each state tend to be strict on this issue, so study them closely.
If a tenant is late on their rent payment, landlords in New Mexico can issue a rent demand notice and must wait three days before filing for eviction. During those three days, the tenant can either pay what they owe or vacatethe property.
If tenants have broken a different term of the lease agreement, New Mexico landlords may file a violation of lease notice.Tenants have seven days to either cure their violation or leave before landlords can start evictions proceedings.
Finally, according to New Mexico eviction law,if a tenant breaks more than one lease violation within six months of the initial violation, the landlord may serve an unconditional notice to quit providing the tenant seven days to vacate the premises.
Federal law protects tenants from housing discrimination based on the following seven classes: race, color, religion, gender, national origin, familial status, or disability. New Mexico landlord tenant lawsuphold these regulations and adds ancestry, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, and pregnancy. If you’re curious or confused about tenant protections, be sure to consult an attorney. Housing discrimination can ruin your reputation as a landlord, not to mention cost you thousands in fines and land you in serious legal trouble.
New Mexico is a fantastic place for your next investment if you take the time to research the important real estate laws there. Following these laws to the best of your ability will make your job much easier and will ensure that you give your tenants the best treatment possible. Use this article as a starting point for your own further research into these laws. If you have questions, reach out to other landlords or to an attorney.