Unfortunately for renters, the laws in Texas don’t limit how much a landlord can ask you to put down for a security deposit. The equivalent of one month’s rent is common—but it’s not illegal for a landlord in Austin or Houston to ask for more. Whatever the amount, it should be clearly written out in the lease.
Other Texas laws that deal with security deposits aren’t particularly tenant-friendly, either. Your landlord is allowed to include a clause in the lease that requires you to let them know in advance that you're moving out, even if your lease is up—otherwise, they get to keep your entire deposit. The clause has to be either bolded or underlined, so you should be able to find it when you read through the lease before signing. You could even ask the landlord to cross that clause out, although they’re allowed to refuse.
The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice.
Can’t find your question?
Have a specific question that's not answered in one of our Learn articles? Submit it here and we might be able to create a new article.