Q: I teach piano lessons in my rented duplex. When I told my landlord about it, he said OK, but insisted that the presence of my students would increase his exposure to lawsuits. So now he's asking me to pay an additional deposit. Can he do that? --Jane C. A: To answer your question, we'd need to know first whether your state regulates the amount of the security deposit a landlord may require. Many states set a maximum as a multiple of the monthly rent (twice the rent is common). But some set no limits -- Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, New York (nonregulated rentals only), Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming. If you live in a state that doesn't limit the deposit size, your landlord can raise the deposit in a month-to-month tenancy for any reason, as long as he gives proper notice. Tenants with leases cannot be required to incr...
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