On April 28, Florida Legislature passed Housing Bill 1417 (HB 1417), which now awaits Governor Ron DeSantis’s final ruling.
If signed into law, HB 1417 would grant Florida state authority over landlord-tenant law, overriding any local government regulations on evictions, tenant screening, security deposits, rental application fees, and more.
Advocates of the bill claim that it will bring clarity and consistency to the rental industry, and ensure that owners receive comparable protection to tenants.
Florida Representative and HB 1417 sponsor Tiffany Esposito said, "Adding [local] levels of bureaucracy and extra pieces that our landlords and our owners have to jump through, it's just increasing the cost to do business, which is passed on to our consumers."
But opponents argue that HB 1417 could dismantle Florida’s local renter protection laws such as Orange County’s Tenant Bill of Rights, which includes anti-discrimination provisions not currently provided by state law.
As Governor DeSantis reviews HB 1417, its potential effects on renters’ and landlords’ rights are the subject of intense debate. The bill’s fate carries significant weight for the future of rental regulations in Florida, and property managers are advised to stay informed of any developments and to seek guidance to ensure continued compliance if the bill becomes effective.
Unless vetoed by DeSantis, HB 1417 will go into effect on July 1, 2023.
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