A Washington rental application form is a document that local property owners and landlords use to collect the necessary information to decide to who they want to offer a lease agreement. If you own property in Washington, there are vital questions that you want to ask, but you also need to make sure you do not violate the rights of the rental applicants. Learn more about Washington rental laws below, and use our template to help you screen your prospective tenants.
Below you can find important information for tenants under the Washington Landlord-Tenant Act, including fees, deposits, and what landlords must provide in the applicant notice. Additionally, there are resources available, such as the State Sex Offender Registry and State Fair Housing Laws, that tenants and landlords should be aware of to ensure fair and compliant rental processes.
According to the Washington Landlord-Tenant Act, there are several essential points that applicants need to know about fees and deposits  .
- Application Fee: As per § 59.18.257, a property owner can charge a rental application fee, but the fee can only be for the actual costs incurred by the landlord for applicant screening. The amount charged cannot exceed the typical costs of screening services in the area.
- Security Deposit: Per § 59.18.270, a landlord can charge any amount for a security deposit. The security deposit has to be placed in a trust account for security deposits with a Washington licensed escrow agent or in a state or federal financial institution that is adequately protected.
- Pet Deposit: Washington landlords may charge a pet deposit. They must provide the tenant with a written agreement stating the deposit amount, terms, and conditions under which the renter may return the deposit.
Per § 59.18.257, all landlords and property owners must provide a notice to each applicant outlining the criteria used to decide whether they will rent their property out to a specific applicant.
This information has to include the source of the screening processes, the cost, and what would cause an applicant to be denied.
Other Landlord Resources
- State Sex Offender Registry: Washington landlords can access the State Sex Offender Registry to be aware of any registered sex offenders applying as tenants.
- State Fair Housing Laws: Washington landlords must adhere to the state’s Fair Housing laws, which prohibit discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, familial status, or source of income.
Use our Washington rental application template to make sure you screen your applicants thoroughly.