Understanding AB 12: A Comprehensive Guide to California's Law on Security Deposits

GoldenWest Management


October 17, 2023

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Searching for more information on AB 12? If so, you’ve come to the right place! California’s latest law that affects landlords will directly affect what they can charge for a security deposit.


Under the new law, which takes affect July 1st, 2024, landlords can charge up to two-months-rent, for an unfurnished apartment and up to three-months-rent for a furnished apartment.


What is AB 12 and why is it important?


AB 12, also known as Assembly Bill 12, is a piece of legislation passed by the California State Legislature. This law addresses the issue of security deposits in rental agreements. The primary objective of AB 12 is to protect tenants from unfair practices related to security deposits and ensure landlords comply with specific regulations.


The importance of AB 12 cannot be understated. It establishes clear guidelines for security deposit collection, allocation, and refund, thus safeguarding the interests of both tenants and landlords. By understanding the key provisions of AB 12, you can navigate the rental market with confidence and ensure compliance with the law.


Understanding the key provisions of AB 12


AB 12 introduces several key provisions that aim to regulate the handling of security deposits. One important provision is the limit placed on the amount of security deposit a landlord can collect. Under AB 12, landlords are restricted to collecting a maximum of two months' rent for unfurnished dwellings and three months' rent for furnished dwellings.


Additionally, AB 12 specifies the timeframe within which landlords must return security deposits to tenants. Previously, this timeframe was 21 days, but AB 12 has extended it to 30 days. Failure to comply with this deadline may result in penalties for the landlord.


AB 12 also requires landlords to provide tenants with an itemized statement explaining any deductions made from the security deposit. This provision promotes transparency and ensures tenants are aware of the reasons behind any deductions.


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