Iowa Laws for Landlords.
Your Resource for laws affecting landlords in Iowa

(Information is updated daily)

Landlord Legislation in Iowa

Below is a list of laws for landlords in Iowa. New resources, bills and articles are updated daily. You can also type in a Bill Number or Keyword in the search bar to find additional details on laws.

IA HF866 A bill for an act relating to landlords and tenants, including service animal requirements, rent late fees, forcible entry and detainer property disposal, and peaceable possession, and including applicability provisions.(Formerly HF 843, HSB 253.)

Introduced Session

89th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to landlords and tenants, including service animal requirements, rent late fees, forcible entry and detainer property disposal, and peaceable possession, and including applicability provisions.(Formerly HF 843, HSB 253.)
Sponsors
Ways and Means
Last Action
Introduced, placed on Ways and Means calendar. H.J. 919.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2021-hf866/

IA SF403 A bill for an act relating to property law by modifying provisions relating to rental properties, manufactured home communities, mobile home parks, and manufactured mobile home communities, modifying provisions governing actions relating to such properties, making penalties applicable, and including effective date and applicability provisions.

Introduced Session

89th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to property law by modifying provisions relating to rental properties, manufactured home communities, mobile home parks, and manufactured mobile home communities, modifying provisions governing actions relating to such properties, making penalties applicable, and including effective date and applicability provisions.
Sponsors
Carrie Koelker
Last Action
Subcommittee: Dawson, Bisignano, and Schultz. S.J. 455.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2021-sf403/

IA HF442 A bill for an act relating to property law by modifying provisions relating to rental properties, manufactured home communities, mobile home parks, and manufactured mobile home communities, modifying provisions governing actions relating to such properties, making penalties applicable, and including effective date and applicability provisions.(See HF 833.)

Introduced Session

89th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to property law by modifying provisions relating to rental properties, manufactured home communities, mobile home parks, and manufactured mobile home communities, modifying provisions governing actions relating to such properties, making penalties applicable, and including effective date and applicability provisions.(See HF 833.)
Sponsors
Brian Lohse Cherielynn Westrich Eddie Andrews Steven Holt Shannon Lundgren David Maxwell
Last Action
Committee report approving bill, renumbered as HF 833.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2021-hf442/

IA HSB253 A bill for an act relating to landlords and tenants, including service animal requirements, rent late fees, forcible entry and detainer property disposal, and peaceable possession, and including applicability provisions.(See HF 843.)

Introduced Session

89th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to landlords and tenants, including service animal requirements, rent late fees, forcible entry and detainer property disposal, and peaceable possession, and including applicability provisions.(See HF 843.)
Sponsors
Judiciary
Last Action
Committee report, recommending passage. H.J. 614.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2021-hsb253/

IA HF843 A bill for an act relating to landlords and tenants, including service animal requirements, rent late fees, forcible entry and detainer property disposal, and peaceable possession, and including applicability provisions.(Formerly HSB 253.)

Introduced Session

89th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to landlords and tenants, including service animal requirements, rent late fees, forcible entry and detainer property disposal, and peaceable possession, and including applicability provisions.(Formerly HSB 253.)
Sponsors
Judiciary
Last Action
Subcommittee recommends passage. Vote Total: 3-0
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2021-hf843/

IA SF552 A bill for an act relating to utilities at rental properties and landlords’ ability to use security deposits to satisfy delinquent utility accounts.(Formerly SF 135.)

Introduced Session

89th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to utilities at rental properties and landlords' ability to use security deposits to satisfy delinquent utility accounts.(Formerly SF 135.)
Sponsors
Commerce
Last Action
Referred to Commerce. S.J. 726.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2021-sf552/

IA SF203 A bill for an act requiring the use of inventory checklists upon commencement of a residential tenancy and including applicability provisions.

Introduced Session

89th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act requiring the use of inventory checklists upon commencement of a residential tenancy and including applicability provisions.
Sponsors
Joseph Bolkcom Janet Petersen Eric Giddens Zach Wahls Sarah Trone Garriott Pam Jochum William Dotzler
Last Action
Subcommittee: Whiting, Bolkcom, and J. Taylor. S.J. 251.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2021-sf203/

IA HF534 A bill for an act requiring the use of inventory checklists upon commencement of a residential tenancy and including applicability provisions.

Introduced Session

89th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act requiring the use of inventory checklists upon commencement of a residential tenancy and including applicability provisions.
Sponsors
Mary Mascher Art Staed Cindy Winckler Christina Bohannan
Last Action
Introduced, referred to Judiciary. H.J. 399.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2021-hf534/

IA HF676 A bill for an act relating to the use of inventory checklists upon commencement and termination of residential tenancies and including applicability provisions.(Formerly HF 443.)

Introduced Session

89th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to the use of inventory checklists upon commencement and termination of residential tenancies and including applicability provisions.(Formerly HF 443.)
Sponsors
Judiciary
Last Action
Introduced, placed on calendar. H.J. 507.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2021-hf676/

IA HF443 A bill for an act relating to the use of inventory checklists upon commencement and termination of residential tenancies and including applicability provisions.(See HF 676.)

Introduced Session

89th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to the use of inventory checklists upon commencement and termination of residential tenancies and including applicability provisions.(See HF 676.)
Sponsors
Brian Lohse
Last Action
Committee report approving bill, renumbered as HF 676.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2021-hf443/

IA HF658 A bill for an act relating to utilities at rental properties, including landlord notification of delinquency notices sent by utilities, landlord notification requirements to utilities, and permitting landlords to use security deposits to satisfy delinquent utility accounts.(See HF 779.)

Introduced Session

89th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to utilities at rental properties, including landlord notification of delinquency notices sent by utilities, landlord notification requirements to utilities, and permitting landlords to use security deposits to satisfy delinquent utility accounts.(See HF 779.)
Sponsors
Robert Bacon
Last Action
Committee report approving bill, renumbered as HF 779.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2021-hf658/

IA HF90 A bill for an act prohibiting discrimination in housing provided to persons with a disability or disability-related need for an assistance animal and providing penalties.

Introduced Session

89th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act prohibiting discrimination in housing provided to persons with a disability or disability-related need for an assistance animal and providing penalties.
Sponsors
Sandy Salmon
Last Action
Subcommittee recommends passage. Vote Total: 2-1
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2021-hf90/

IA SF135 A bill for an act relating to landlord notification of delinquency notices sent by utilities and landlords’ ability to use security deposits to satisfy delinquent utility accounts.(See SF 552.)

Introduced Session

89th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to landlord notification of delinquency notices sent by utilities and landlords' ability to use security deposits to satisfy delinquent utility accounts.(See SF 552.)
Sponsors
Jeff Edler
Last Action
Committee report approving bill, renumbered as SF 552. S.J. 521.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2021-sf135/

IA HF270 A bill for an act relating to the testing of well water of dwelling units and mobile home spaces prior to entering into rental agreements.

Introduced Session

88th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to the testing of well water of dwelling units and mobile home spaces prior to entering into rental agreements.
Sponsors
Bruce Bearinger
Last Action
Introduced, referred to Commerce. H.J. 220.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2019-hf270/

IA SF351 A bill for an act relating to utility service cost disclosures in connection with certain rental properties, providing penalties, and including effective date provisions. (See SF 549.)

Introduced Session

88th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to utility service cost disclosures in connection with certain rental properties, providing penalties, and including effective date provisions. (See SF 549.)
Sponsors
Charles Schneider Zach Nunn
Last Action
Committee report approving bill, renumbered as SF 549. S.J. 513.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2019-sf351/

IA SF549 A bill for an act relating to utility service cost disclosures in connection with certain rental properties, providing penalties, and including effective date provisions. (Formerly SF 351.)

Introduced Session

88th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to utility service cost disclosures in connection with certain rental properties, providing penalties, and including effective date provisions. (Formerly SF 351.)
Sponsors
State Government
Last Action
Subcommittee: Carlson, Williams and Wills. H.J. 707.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2019-sf549/

IA HSB635 A bill for an act relating to utility service cost disclosures in connection with certain rental properties, providing penalties, and including effective date provisions.

Introduced Session

88th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to utility service cost disclosures in connection with certain rental properties, providing penalties, and including effective date provisions.
Sponsors
State Government
Last Action
Subcommittee Meeting: 02/12/2020 12:30PM House Lounge.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2019-hsb635/

IA SF2291 A bill for an act requiring the use of inventory checklists upon commencement of a residential tenancy and including applicability provisions.

Introduced Session

88th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act requiring the use of inventory checklists upon commencement of a residential tenancy and including applicability provisions.
Sponsors
Zach Wahls
Last Action
Subcommittee: Nunn, R. Taylor, and Whiting. S.J. 337.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2019-sf2291/

IA HF269 A bill for an act relating to utility cost disclosures in connection with rental properties, providing penalties, and including applicability provisions.

Introduced Session

88th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to utility cost disclosures in connection with rental properties, providing penalties, and including applicability provisions.
Sponsors
Charles Isenhart
Last Action
Introduced, referred to Commerce. H.J. 220.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2019-hf269/

IA SF2238 A bill for an act relating to property law by modifying provisions relating to rental properties, manufactured home communities, mobile home parks, and manufactured mobile home communities, modifying provisions governing actions relating to such properties, making penalties applicable, and including effective date and applicability provisions.

Introduced Session

88th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to property law by modifying provisions relating to rental properties, manufactured home communities, mobile home parks, and manufactured mobile home communities, modifying provisions governing actions relating to such properties, making penalties applicable, and including effective date and applicability provisions.
Sponsors
Carrie Koelker Annette Sweeney Jerry Behn Mark Segebart Tim Kapucian Thomas Greene Zach Nunn Chris Cournoyer Tom Shipley Mark Lofgren Waylon Brown Tim Kraayenbrink Zach Whiting James Carlin Craig Johnson Zach Wahls Kevin Kinney Tony Bisignano William Dotzler Eric Giddens Pam Jochum Amanda Ragan Jackie Smith Robert Hogg Todd Taylor Janet Petersen Joseph Bolkcom Liz Mathis Claire Celsi Jim Lykam
Last Action
Subcommittee reassigned: Chapman, Feenstra, and Jochum. S.J. 323.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2019-sf2238/

IA SF2245 A bill for an act relating to the possession and storage of firearms by a tenant of a dwelling unit or mobile home space and making penalties applicable.

Introduced Session

88th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to the possession and storage of firearms by a tenant of a dwelling unit or mobile home space and making penalties applicable.
Sponsors
Jason Schultz
Last Action
Subcommittee recommends passage.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2019-sf2245/

IA HF2216 A bill for an act requiring the use of inventory checklists upon commencement of a residential tenancy and including applicability provisions.

Introduced Session

88th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act requiring the use of inventory checklists upon commencement of a residential tenancy and including applicability provisions.
Sponsors
Brian Lohse
Last Action
Subcommittee Meeting: 02/06/2020 12:00PM House Lounge.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2019-hf2216/

IA HF2351 A bill for an act relating to property law by modifying provisions relating to rental properties, manufactured home communities, mobile home parks, and manufactured mobile home communities, modifying provisions governing actions relating to such properties, making penalties applicable, and including effective date and applicability provisions.

Introduced Session

88th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to property law by modifying provisions relating to rental properties, manufactured home communities, mobile home parks, and manufactured mobile home communities, modifying provisions governing actions relating to such properties, making penalties applicable, and including effective date and applicability provisions.
Sponsors
Brian Lohse Bobby Kaufmann Joe Mitchell Jacob Bossman Steven Holt Shannon Lundgren John Landon Thomas Gerhold Kenan Judge Heather Matson Lindsay James Wesley Breckenridge Chris Hall John Forbes Amy Nielsen Ras Smith
Last Action
Subcommittee recommends passage.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2019-hf2351/

IA SSB3142 A bill for an act relating to unenforceable provisions in rental agreements.

Introduced Session

87th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to unenforceable provisions in rental agreements.
Sponsors
Judiciary
Last Action
Subcommittee recommends amendment and passage.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2017-ssb3142/

IA HSB633 A bill for an act relating to unenforceable provisions in rental agreements.

Introduced Session

87th General Assembly

Summary
A bill for an act relating to unenforceable provisions in rental agreements.
Sponsors
Judiciary
Last Action
Subcommittee recommends passage.
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/ia-2017-hsb633/

Must-Know Iowa Landlord-Tenant Laws

Law For Landlords

In the U.S., there are nearly 48.5 million rental units. A little over half of these rental units are owned by business entities, while the rest are owned by individual investors.

There are a lot of good reasons to own rental property in, including providing a passive income source as well as the potential for property value appreciation. Many Americans have managed to make rental property ownership their full-time job, while others might keep a few rental properties as a way of making extra income.

If you are considering becoming a landlord, you likely have a lot of questions. What regulations do landlords need to know? What should I know as a landlord in general?

Understanding landlord-tenant laws is essential for protecting yourself legally and financially. Here’s a brief guide for self-managing landlords regarding some of the most important federal and state laws.

The Fair Housing Act

The Fair Housing Act is one of the two major federal laws that impact all property managers and landlords across the country. This is a law that prohibits discrimination due to national origin, race, religion, color, disability, sex or familial status. This law applies to:

  • Renting or buying a home
  • Seeking housing assistance
  • Getting a mortgage
  • Engaging in other housing-related activities

This law extends beyond leasing where landlords are concerned. It also applies to advertising, meaning that it is illegal to market your properties to any specific group of people.

Fair Credit Reporting Act

The Fair Credit Reporting Act is a law that requires landlords to do a number of things when running a credit check. These include receiving permission from an applicant to run a credit report, informing the applicant if their credit report was the basis for adverse action or denial, and providing specific information regarding the credit reporting agency they used

Law Paint Law

It is required by landlords under federal law to disclose the presence of lead paint. They are not required to remove lead paint under federal law, but state laws might dictate otherwise. It’s important to learn about your state and municipality laws regarding lead paint in addition to the federal law.

Discrimination Law

Beyond the Federal Fair Housing Act, state and local laws might provide additional protection beyond the federal law. These might extend protections to people based on their sexual orientation, age, marital status, political association and even hairstyle.

Tenant Duties

While your tenant is responsible for some things, you should know what those things are as the landlord. Then, you can include those duties in your lease agreement. If a tenant doesn’t fulfill their duties, you may be able to provide a notice to vacate in law. Your tenants need to comply with local health and building codes to keep themselves and others safe. They also need to dispose of garbage safely and legally, and they need to use the property reasonably. That means living in the property, but unreasonable uses could include conducting business. Tenants are also responsible for keeping the property clean on a daily basis. They also can’t do anything that would disturb their neighbors, especially if you own a duplex or a similar property. A tenant must also ensure their guests also comply with these requirements. And whenever your tenant has any issues, they must notify you so that you can correct the problem.

Security Deposit Limit

Before a tenant moves in, you can charge them a security deposit. Fortunately, doesn’t have any limitations regarding the amount the deposit can be. You can set an amount based on the property’s rent or value. And you can charge a security deposit for short-term or long-term leases. Then, you can hold onto that amount for the duration of the tenant’s stay. While you can use the money from the deposit, it’s smart to keep it in a separate account. When the tenant moves out, you can make sure you have enough money to pay them back. You can outline the terms of the security deposit, such as the amount and when you will return it, in your lease agreement. That way, you and your tenant both understand the terms, and you can use similar language if you ever buy property in another state.

A Legal Lease Document

Each state and some municipalities might have laws regarding the lease contract. Rental contracts must abide by all laws and be legally written. It is necessary to indicate tenant names, monthly rental rates, and leasing periods clearly.

In some jurisdictions, it is required that certain legal disclosures be included in the lease document. Working with a lawyer to produce your rental contract can help ensure that the lease provides all of the required information and doesn’t break any federal, state, or local laws.

Required Disclosures

It is common in many states to require landlords to inform tenants about individual landlord policies, certain state laws, or specific information about the rental. It might be required that this is disclosed within the lease itself or in additional documentation.

It’s important to look into your state’s requirements about disclosures. However, some commonly required disclosures include notice of recent deaths, mold, meth contamination, or other safety or health hazards.

Providing a Safe Environment

One important landlord-tenant law has to do with the habitability of the rental unit. The definition of “safe, habitable condition” might be different between states. For this reason, you must familiarize yourself with the laws for landlords in your location.

Typically, this means that the property cannot have serious deficiencies. It also means that fixtures, appliances, heating, and plumbing need to be in working order. You also cannot rent out a property that is infested with pests or insects.

 Landlords are usually responsible for dealing with infestations even if the outbreak happens after the tenant moves in. However, in many states, this can be avoided by specifying that the renter is responsible for pest control.

Laws About Making Repairs

In the lease agreement, it will be outlined that the tenants are responsible for reporting necessary repairs. It then becomes the landlord’s responsibility to complete the repairs within an appropriate amount of time.

If a landlord doesn’t make a repair in a timely manner in a way that impacts the safety or health of a tenant, a tenant might have the right to withhold rent.

Security Deposits

It is common for landlords to require a security deposit from the tenant. This is in order to cover the costs of any damage the tenant causes or if they fail to pay rent. A landlord must refund the security deposit unless it is needed to cover the cost of fixing property damage or covering default rent payments.

In some states, how the security deposit is kept is dictated by the law. It is also typically required that an itemized list of deductions must be provided to the tenant if the landlord is using some of the deposit for these purposes.

The unused portion of the deposit must be returned and the itemized statement must be provided. If they aren’t, the landlord can face financial and legal repercussions.

Renters Right To Privacy

Most landlord-tenant rules and regulations cover the right to quiet enjoyment of a tenant. This means that it is their right to live on a property undisturbed. The landlord must give proper notice before entering the rental unit, which is usually 24 to 48 hours unless there is an emergency.

Landlords can only enter the rental property for valid reasons and at a reasonable time of day after giving notice.

Landlord-Tenant Laws: Essential For Protecting Yourself Legally and Financially

Without a good understanding of landlord-tenant laws, you can find yourself in a mess of legal and financial trouble. It’s therefore very important to familiarize yourself with the federal, state, and local laws regarding the rights of tenants and the responsibilities of landlords.

Are you looking for more valuable resources to serve as a guide for self-managing landlords? You can find more resources and guides here.

Reviewing Laws for Landlords

Understanding laws for landlords is essential for keeping your properties up and running. It can also protect you and your finances if you have a problematic tenant or experience other issues. Whether you just bought your first rental property or are looking to expand, you should understand how these laws affect you. That way, you won’t have to worry about losing everything. Do you want to learn more about laws for landlords? Let us know.

Please understand that because of the nature of the topic, this page has been written in a generalized form. Further guidance should be sought on the topic being searched by the landlord.

Iowa Landlord Legislation Blog

Governor’s Latest Executive Order

KEY FACTS: Issued:  October 15, 2020
Expires:  November 14, 2020 Caveat:
Late Fee Prohibition Remains in Effect
Through December 31, 2020 KEY ISSUES:
Rent Demands: Extends 30-day rent
demand until November 14th The 30-day
rent demand applies to ALL Landlords
(residential and commercial). Late Fees:
The Order establishes a ban […]

Governor’s Latest Executive Order

KEY FACTS: Issued:  October 15, 2020
Expires:  November 14, 2020 Caveat:
Late Fee Prohibition Remains in Effect
Through December 31, 2020 KEY ISSUES:
Rent Demands: Extends 30-day rent
demand until November 14th The 30-day
rent demand applies to ALL Landlords
(residential and commercial). Late Fees:
The Order establishes a ban […]

Governor’s Latest Executive Order

KEY FACTS: Issued:  October 15, 2020
Expires:  November 14, 2020 Caveat:
Late Fee Prohibition Remains in Effect
Through December 31, 2020 KEY ISSUES:
Rent Demands: Extends 30-day rent
demand until November 14th The 30-day
rent demand applies to ALL Landlords
(residential and commercial). Late Fees:
The Order establishes a ban […]

Eviction Moratorium Ends

Time to Focus on Rental Assistance Breaking News August 27, 2021 The U.S. Supreme Court ended the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC’s) eviction moratorium Thursday night, giving much-needed relief to America’s small housing providers facing financial hardship for more than a year. In a 6-3 ruling, a majority of justices agreed that the stay on the lower court’s order finding the CDC’s eviction moratorium to be unlawful was no longer justified. In their order, the justices wrote, “The

Read More »

A Guide to Section 8 for Landlords

Over 10 million Americans are afforded federal rental assistance under a program known as Section 8 housing. This federal rental assistance can be used all over the United States, which means that all US landlords should have a basic understanding of what Section 8 is and how it works. In short, Section 8 housing provides a solution for low-income families and individuals who are in need of housing. But how does Section 8 housing work for landlords? If you’ve poked around online

Read More »

Pros and Cons of Month-to-Month Rental Leases

The real estate market is in a particularly unusual state in 2021 as the overall economy seeks to correct itself during an ongoing pandemic. One of the more surprising results of the past year is that while housing prices are going up, the cost to rent is, in many places, going down or stabilizing. Now is a great time for property owners to analyze the kind of leasing agreements they typically offer. Is month-to-month rental a better solution in the present,

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A Guide to Squatter Rights- What Landlords Absolutely Need to Know

If you’re a landlord who has recently discovered the presence of unknown tenants living in one of your properties, you’re probably wondering what to do next. Is this trespassing? Can you simply kick them out? The answer is not quite so simple, assuming these unexpected tenants are squatters. We tend to think of squatters in basic, colloquial terms: people who have moved into a property they don’t own or rent and live there without permission. However, you’ve probably also heard

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A Complete Guide to Every Step in the Eviction Process

As a landlord, your hope is to bring on high-quality tenants that abide by the lease and pay rent on time each month. However, you might be surprised at how likely it is that you could find yourself going through the eviction process at some point in your tenure. In the past few years, US eviction data was compiled and revealed just how common evictions actually are. In fact, in 2016 alone, 2.3 million evictions were filed in America. Our goal is

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The Landlord’s Guide to Rent Collection

There are over 10 million individual landlords in the United States, each with its own methods for rent collection. How a landlord collects rent, what they charge, and how they deal with late payments has to do both with their personal preferences and the laws in their state. Renting is a great way to earn side money or even a full liveable income, but there are many things to consider before you begin looking for tenants. If you have a property you’re interested

Read More »

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