Everything You Should Know About Maryland Security Deposits

There are general landlord/tenant rules that can be modified differently in each state.  Below is what you need to know about the laws in Maryland.

How much can a landlord collect as a security deposit in Maryland?

Landlords may only collect a security deposit of up to two months’ rent.  Collecting more than that can result in the tenant to collect up to three times the excess amount of security deposit charged, plus reasonable attorney’s fees.  Upon receiving the security deposit, landlords must provide the tenant with a receipt, which can be included as part of the lease or rental agreement.

The receipt must contain the following: (1) the tenant’s right to have the unit inspected by the landlord to be present, to make a list of damages that exist at the start of tenancy; (2) the tenant’s right to be present when the landlord inspects the unit at the end of the rental period; (3) the landlord’s duty to inspect the unit within five days before or after the tenant’s move date at the end of the tenant’s rental period, and the landlord’s duty to inform the tenant of the inspection move date; (4) the landlord’s ability to return all or a portion of the security deposit within 45 days (see below); and (5) a statement that the landlord’s failure to comply with the Maryland security deposit law may result in the landlord’s liability to the tenant with a penalty up to three times the security deposit kept, plus reasonable attorney’s fees.

How long does it take to get a security deposit back in Maryland?

Security deposits should be returned within 45 days from the tenant’s move out date.  The landlord may return all, or a portion of, the tenant’s security deposit plus any interest that accrued.  The security deposit must be sent by first-class mail to the last known address of the tenant.  If the landlord deducted a portion of the security deposit, the landlord must give the tenant a written itemized list of deductions that were taken out from the security deposit (i.e. cover unpaid rent, damage in excess of normal ear, and other breaches to the lease agreement).

What is the interest rate on security deposits in Maryland?

Security deposits must be stored in an interest-bearing account if the security deposit is for over $50 and the landlord kept it for at least 6 months.  Interest shall accrue at monthly intervals from the day the tenant gave the landlord the security deposit.  Landlords must return security deposits to tenants with simple interest which has accrued at the daily U.S. Treasury yield curve rate for 1 year, as of the first business day of each year, or 1.5% a year, whichever is greater, excluding any damages that were withheld from the security deposit.

EPGD Business Law is located in beautiful Coral Gables, West Palm Beach and historic Washington D.C. Call us at (786) 837-6787, or contact us through the website to schedule a consultation.

*Disclaimer: this blog post is not intended to be legal advice. We highly recommend speaking to an attorney if you have any legal concerns. Contacting us through our website does not establish an attorney-client relationship.*

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Eric Gros-Dubois

Eric P. Gros-Dubois founded EPGD Business Law in 2013 and is the current head of the firm’s corporate, estate planning, and tax practice, and manages the firm’s Washington D.C. office. With a JD and MBA, and a specialization in finance, Eric is able to step back and view the legal world through a commercial lens while also acting as a trusted business advisor for his clients. He does his best to be solutions oriented, and tries to think like a business owner, not just a lawyer.


*The following comments are not intended to be treated as legal advice. The answer to your question is limited to the basic facts presented. Additional details may heavily alter our assessment and change the answer provided. For a more thorough review of your question please contact our office for a consultation.

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