Washington
Rent Increases & Fees

QUICK FACTS
  • Rent Control / Increase Limitations. Washington state landlords can raise rent without reason, by as much as they like and as often as they want, as long as it isn’t during the term of the lease and isn’t for a discriminatory or retaliatory reason.
  • Notice Required to Raise Rent. For month-to-month tenancies, non-Seattle landlords must provide 30 days notice from next rent due date. Within Seattle, 60 days notice is required.
  • Late Rent Fees. Washington state landlords have no restrictions on imposing late fees, except in Seattle, which requires their terms must be outlined in the lease agreement in order to be charged.

A Washington landlord is bound by the terms of the written lease. He/she may increase rent when the lease is renewed or if both parties agree to a change in the conditions of the lease. When dealing with a month-to-month tenant, a landlord may increase rent as he/she sees fit so long as the appropriate notice is provided.

When Is It Illegal to Raise Rent in Washington?

In Washington state it is illegal for a landlord to raise rent based on the age, race, religion, nation or origin, familial status, or disability status of a tenant Fair Housing Act.

It is also illegal for a Washington landlord to increase rent on a tenant in retaliation for his/her filing a complaint regarding the health, safety, or housing code violations of the rental property with the appropriate agency (RCW 59.18.240).

How Much Can a Landlord Raise Rent in Washington?

The state of Washington does not legislate the amount of rent a landlord may charge.

How Much Notice is Needed for Raising Rent in Washington?

A Washington landlord is required to provide a written 30-Day Notice to month-to-month tenants before increased rent may be expected (RCW 59.18.140).

In the city of Seattle, a landlord is required to provide a minimum 60-Day Notice prior to a rent increase on a month-to-month tenant, unless the tenancy is subsidized. If the tenant has subsidized rent, the landlord is required to provide a written 30-Day Notice prior to an increase in rent (Seattle Code 7.24.030).

How Often Can Rent Be Increased in Washington?

The state of Washington does not legislate the frequency with which a landlord may increase rent.

Laws Regarding Late Fees in Washington

Washington state has no legislation regarding a landlord’s ability to impose late fees. In the city of Seattle, a landlord is required to disclose any late fees in the written lease.

Laws Regarding Bounced Check Fees in Washington

A Washington landlord may charge a tenant up to 12% interest and a collection fee of up to $40 when a rent check is returned for insufficient funds and remains unpaid for 15 days (RCW 62A.3-515).

Cities in Washington with Rent Control

Washington state has no legislation controlling the amount of rent a landlord may charge. The state does have legislation preempting legislation attempts by local municipalities to control rent.