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How to Hold and Return a Security Deposit in Florida

In Florida, there is no limit to the amount you can charge for a security deposit. A security deposit is generally equal to the amount of 1 months' rent.

Storing the Deposit

Florida statute 83.49 requires security deposits be held in a separate bank account in the state of Florida.

If you keep the deposit in a bank account that accrues interest, the interest must be returned to the subtenant when you return the security deposit. The amount of interest can be either a minimum of 75 percent of the annualized average interest rate payable on the account or 5 percent per year. Many people choose to keep security deposits in a separate bank account specifically for that purpose.

Returning the Deposit

You can use your subtenant’s security deposit to pay for damages beyond normal wear and tear or to cover unpaid rent. If you are returning your subtenant's security deposit in full, you must do so, including any interest it has accrued, within 15 days of the end of the sublease term. In order to withhold some or all of the security deposit, you must give written notice to your subtenant within 30 days of the end of the sublease agreement. Written notice must be sent by certified mail to the subtenant’s last known mailing address.

Here's what the notice needs to look like:

This is a notice of my intention to impose a claim for damages in the amount of [amount] upon your security deposit, due to [reason]. It is sent to you as required by s. 83.49(3), Florida Statutes. You are hereby notified that you must object in writing to this deduction from your security deposit within 15 days from the time you receive this notice or I will be authorized to deduct my claim from your security deposit. Your objection must be sent to [landlord’s address].

The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice.