West Virginia Leases and Rental Agreements Laws
Created by FindLaw's team of legal writers and editors | Last reviewed October 26, 2017
Maybe you’ve rented a house to some rowdy Mountaineer undergrads in Morgantown. Or maybe you’ve been having trouble getting the heat fixed in your chilly Charleston apartment. Either way, you may be thinking that having a better understanding of the Mountain State’s landlord-tenant laws could save you from a few headaches.
If you’ve ever found yourself in a contentious lessor-lessee relationship, you’ll want to know your legal rights and responsibilities and this is a great place to start. Here is a quick introduction to leases and rental agreements laws in West Virginia.
Leases and Rental Agreement Law
State lease and rental agreement laws define some of the basics terms of real estate rental contracts in order to avoid landlord-tenant conflicts down the road. These statutes can be fairly similar, especially in states that have adopted the Uniform Residential Landlord and Tenant Act (URLTA), a law that attempts create some consistency in landlord-tenant relations from state to state.
While West Virginia has not yet adopted URLTA, its statutes are similar in that they include protections against housing discrimination, set the time limits for leases, and dictate what to do when and if a lease expires. A few states have enacted stricter tenant rights laws, which can provide even greater protections for renters.
Leases and Rental Agreements in West Virginia
West Virginia’s rental laws prohibit landlords from discriminating against any renters, with the exception of set aside housing for seniors only. There are no statutory provisions limiting the amount a landlord can charge for a deposit, or requirements for interest to be added to the deposit over the time of the lease. And when a lease term ends, the holdover tenant remains subject to the terms of the original lease in a year-to-year tenancy. The details of West Virginia’s lease and rental agreements laws are listed below.
West Virginia Code 5-11A-1, et seq.: West Virginia Fair Housing Act;
West Virginia Code 37-6-1, et seq.: Landlord and Tenant
Terms of Leases
Holdover converts to year-to-year tenancy upon terms of original lease (Allen v. Bartlett, 20 W. Va. 46)
No discrimination on basis of race, sex, color, religion, ancestry, familial status, blindness, handicap, or national origin; housing for older persons exempted
Uniform Residential Landlord & Tenant Act Adopted?
More Resources for Leases and Rental Agreements Laws in West Virginia
State rental laws, and what they cover, can be complicated. FindLaw’s section on Leases and Rental Agreements can provide you with additional articles and resources on this topic. You can also consult with a West Virginia landlord-tenant attorney in your area if you would like legal help regarding a lease or rental agreement issue.
You Don’t Have To Solve This on Your Own – Get a Lawyer’s Help
Meeting with a lawyer can help you understand your options and how to best protect your rights. Visit our attorney directory to find a lawyer near you who can help.
Next Steps: Search for a Local Attorney
Contact a qualified attorney.