North Carolina Rent Increases & Fees

Last Updated: May 4, 2022 by Elizabeth Souza

  • Rent Control / Increase Limitations. North Carolina state landlords can raise rent only after the lease has ended.
  • Notice Required to Raise Rent. No state statute. It is recommended that a North Carolina landlord provide at least a 7 days’ notice from next rent due date.
  • Late Rent Fees. North Carolina state landlords may charge a tenant the greater of $15 or 5% for late payment of monthly rent.

When Can a Landlord Increase Rent?

Unless otherwise stated in a lease agreement, a North Carolina landlord may not increase rent within the course term of a lease. At the end of a lease, a North Carolina landlord may increase rent in the amount that he/she sees fit.

When is it Illegal to Raise Rent?

A North Carolina landlord may not retaliate against a tenant by raising rent within one year of his/her:

  • Making a request for repairs on the property.
  • Filing a complaint with the appropriate agency regarding health, safety, or code violations.
  • Exercising his/her rights existing under a rental agreement of state or federal law.
  • Joining or organizing a tenant’s group. (NC Statute 42-37.1)

According to the Federal Fair Housing Act, it is also illegal for a North Carolina landlord to raise rent based on the age, race, religion, nation or origin, familial status, or disability status of a tenant.

Is there a Rent Increase Limit?

The state of North Carolina doesn’t regulate the amount rent may be increased.

How Much Notice is Needed for Raising Rent?

The state provides no legislation regarding notice required for increasing rent on a month-to-month tenant. However, the amount of notice to end tenancy is generally appropriate. It is customary for a North Carolina landlord to provide at least a 7-Day Notice. (North Carolina Statute 42-14)

For a FREE rent increase notice template, click here.

How Often Can Rent Be Increased?

North Carolina doesn’t regulate how often a landlord can increase rent.

Laws Regarding Late Fees

A North Carolina landlord may charge a tenant the greater of $15 or 5% for late payment of monthly rent. A landlord can collect an amount of the greater of $4 or 5% for weekly rent. If a landlord wants to collect a late fee the rent must be at least 5 days late. The late fee should be written in the lease agreement. (North Carolina Statute 42-46)

Laws Regarding Bounced Check Fees

A North Carolina landlord may charge a flat fee of up to $25 for rental payments returned for insufficient funds.

Cities in the State with Rent Control

North Carolina has no rent control. In fact, state legislation indicates that no county or city may enact, maintain, or enforce any ordinance seeking to regulate the amount of rent that can be charged for privately owned rental property. (North Carolina Statute 42-14-1)