A Florida Rental Application streamlines the applicant screening process. The document provides landlords with a fair and objective basis for accepting or denying prospective tenants for a lease agreement.
Florida has specific laws for how to use rental applications, what information you can request, and how you choose your renter. You need to make sure your document is compliant with the state law.
For instance, in Florida, it’s also essential to include a question about the applicant’s military service. Florida Stat. § 83.683 requires a property owner in the state to respond to prospective tenants who are active military members within seven (7) days of receiving a rental application.
Landlords can either accept the application and offer the applicant a Florida residential rental agreement or send a rental application rejection letter explaining why they denied the application. If a landlord fails to comply with the seven (7) day rule, they are obligated to rent the property to the servicemember regardless of other factors they may have wanted to consider.
The landlord typically requests a rental application fee to cover the cost of associated background, credit, and eviction history checks. An applicant’s willingness to put down a small sum also shows that they are serious about renting the property.
Florida does not limit the amount a landlord may charge for the rental application fee, but landlords should set an amount approximate to the expenses incurred for processing the application.
Property owners must keep any payments collected as part of a security deposit or pet deposit in a separate account from other funds (Florida Stat. § 83.49). Individual cities and counties in Florida may cap the amount a landlord can charge for a security deposit, limit when it must be returned, and impose additional restrictions.
In Florida, landlords are allowed to charge pet deposits. However, the state prohibits a property owner from charging a pet deposit if the animal in question is a service animal.
How to Conduct an Eviction Records Search
Florida uses a third-party service that provides essential information when you enter an applicant’s name. However, more detailed information may cost a small fee.
You can save money by conducting your own eviction records search. Tenant written permission is not legally required.
Other Landlord Resources
Florida landlords should also be familiar with these additional state resources:
Below is an example of a standard Florida rental application form that you can download in PDF or Word format.