North Carolina Landlord-Tenant Laws

North Carolina Tenant Screening

In search of free resources, forms, and information on Tenant Screening in North Carolina? Check out our North Carolina Tenant Screening Guide.

Regarding Security Deposit

North Carolina state law sets the limit that landlords can collect for security deposits based on the length of the lease agreement. If the rent is collected weekly, the security deposit can’t exceed two weeks’ rent. For tenancies that are month to month, the security deposit can’t exceed two months’ rent.

North Carolina law requires landlords to put a tenant’s security deposit in a licensed bank. Landlords are not required to earn or pay out interest to tenants on this amount.

The state laws of North Carolina require landlords to return a security deposit to a tenant within 30 days of the end of tenancy.

North Carolina laws concerning security deposits can be found in N.C. Gen. Stat. §§ 42-1 to 42-14.2; 42-25.6 to 42-76.

Regarding Application Fees

North Carolina law places no restrictions on application fees that landlords can collect for tenant screening services.

Regarding Tenant Bad Checks

Civil Penalties: A written demand letter must be sent to the tenant. After 30 days with no response, the landlord can charge either three times the amount of what is owed, or $500, whichever is less.

Criminal Penalties: A check less than $50 can get a tenant a fine of $50, or up to 30 days in jail. For a check between $50 or greater, then they can get a fine of $500 or up to 6 months in jail. There are exceptions to this, for example, if the tenant has had over 3 convictions, then the tenant can get up to 1 year in jail. It also depends on if the check was drawn on a closed account or non-existent account. For a closed account, they could get a fine up to $400, up to 5 months in jail, or both. For a non-existent account, they could get a fine up to $1,000, up to 2 years in jail, or both penalties.

Allowable Fees: $25

Regarding Notice of Termination for Nonpayment

In North Carolina, a landlord must give a tenant at least 10 days in which to pay rent or vacate. After that, the landlord can begin eviction proceedings according to N.C. Gen. Stat. § 42-3.