Offering high-quality, cost-effective representation to consumers throughout Maryland

  1. Home
  2.  → 
  3. Tenant's Rights
  4.  → Is my landlord allowed to hike my rent whenever they choose?

Is my landlord allowed to hike my rent whenever they choose?

Navigating the world of renting can be challenging, especially when it comes to understanding the rules surrounding rent increases. In Maryland, tenants have rights that protect them from unlawful rent hikes.

However, there are tenants who are unaware of these rights, leaving them vulnerable to potential exploitation. If you are a tenant, have you ever wondered what is legal and not when it comes to rent increases?

Notice requirements

According to state law, landlords must give tenants a written notice before increasing the rent. The notice period generally depends on the frequency of rent payments. According to a 2023 publication of the Maryland Office of the Attorney General, these are the typical notice periods of a rent increase:

  • At least 90 days for tenancies longer than one month
  • A minimum of 60 days for tenancies longer than a week
  • At least 21 days for week-to-week tenancies if there is no written lease agreement
  • A minimum of seven days for week-to-week tenancies if there is a written lease agreement

However, the Attorney General’s Office added that Baltimore City and many counties may have different landlord-tenant laws. In addition, tenants must be aware of their lease contract terms regarding automatic renewal or if they will enter into a new contract with their landlord.

Limitations on rent increases

Further, Maryland does not have statewide rent control laws. However, certain cities and counties have rent control regulations. Moreover, the increase must not be discriminatory or retaliatory. Thus, landlords cannot raise the rent to force tenants to move out because of their race, religion, national origin or other protected characteristics.

Shielding your rights and ensuring fairness

Knowing the laws surrounding rent increases is not just about learning the technicalities. It is also about shielding your rights and ensuring fairness in your tenant-landlord relationship. With legal assistance, you may receive guidance and empowerment to address your rent increase issue with confidence and clarity.