New Hampshire Landlord Tenant Law - Click here to return to US Landlord
Chapter 540: ACTIONS AGAINST TENANTS
540:1 Tenancies, Nature of. Every tenancy or occupancy shall be deemed
to be at will, and the rent payable upon demand, unless a different contract
540:1-a Definitions. In this chapter:
I. "Nonrestricted property" means all real property rented for
nonresidential purposes and the following real property rented for
(a) Single-family houses, if the owner of such a house does not own
more than 3 single-family houses at any one time.
(b) Rental units in an owner-occupied building containing a total of 4
dwelling units or fewer.
(c) Rental units in a vacation or recreational dwelling, rented during the
off-season for purposes which are not vacation purposes or which are
(d) Single-family houses acquired by banks or other mortgagees
II. "Restricted property" means all real property rented for residential
purposes, except those properties listed in paragraph I.
III. "Rental unit" means a suite of one or more rooms located within a
single building rented by the owner to one or more individuals living in
common for nontransient residential purposes.
IV. The term "tenant" or "tenancy" shall not include occupants or
occupancy in the following places and the provisions of this chapter shall
not apply to:
(a) Rooms in rooming or boarding houses which are rented to transient
guests for fewer than 90 consecutive days.
(b) Rooms in hotels, motels, inns, tourist homes and other dwellings
rented for recreational or vacation use.
(c) Rooms in student dormitories, nursing homes, hospitals, convents,
monasteries, asylums or group homes.
(d) A single family home in which the occupant has no lease, which is
the primary and usual residence of the owner.
540:2 Termination of Tenancy.
I. The lessor or owner of nonrestricted property may terminate any
tenancy by giving to the tenant or occupant a notice in writing to quit the
premises in accordance with RSA 540:3 and 5.
II. The lessor or owner of restricted property may terminate any tenancy
by giving to the tenant or occupant a notice in writing to quit the premises
in accordance with RSA 540:3 and 5, but only for one of the following
(a) Neglect or refusal to pay rent due and in arrears, upon demand.
(b) Substantial damage to the premises by the tenant, members of his
household, or guests.
(c) Failure of the tenant to comply with a material term of the lease.
(d) Behavior of the tenant or members of his family which adversely
affects the health or safety of the other tenants or the landlord or his
representatives, or failure of the tenant to accept suitable temporary
relocation due to lead-based paint hazard abatement, as set forth in RSA
(e) Other good cause.
(f) The dwelling unit contains a lead exposure-hazard which the owner
will abate by:
(1) Methods other than interim controls or encapsulation;
(2) Any other method which can reasonably be expected to take
more than 30 days to perform; or
(3) Removing the dwelling unit from the residential rental market.
III. If the grounds for eviction is other good cause as set forth in
paragraph II (e) of this section, and such cause is based on the actions or
inactions of the tenant, members of his family or guests, the landlord shall,
prior to the issuance of the notice to quit, provide the tenant with written
notice stating that in the future such actions or inactions would constitute
grounds for eviction. Such notice shall be served in accordance with RSA
540:5 or by certified mall.
IV. A tenant's refusal to agree to a change in the existing rental
agreement calling for an increase in the amount of rent shall constitute
good cause for eviction under paragraph II (e) of this section, provided
that the landlord provided the tenant with written notice of the amount and
effective date of the rent increase at least 30 days prior to the effective date
of the increase.
V. "Other good cause" as set forth in paragraph II (e) of this section
includes, but is not limited to, any legitimate business or economic reason
and need not be based on the action or inaction of the tenant, members of
his family, or guests.
540:3 Notice to Quit.
I. If a nonresidential tenant neglects or refuses to pay rent due and in
arrears, upon demand, 7 days' notice shall be sufficient; if the rent is
payable more frequently than once in 3 months, whether such rent is due or
not, a notice equal to the rent period shall be sufficient, and 3 months'
notice shall be sufficient in all cases.
II. For all residential tenancies, 30 days' notice shall be sufficient in all
cases; provided, however, that 7 days' notice shall be sufficient if the reason
for the termination is as set forth in RSA 540:2, II (a), (b), or (d).
III. The notice to quit shall state with specificity the reason for the
IV. If the notice to quit is based on non-payment of rent, the notice shall
inform the tenant of his right, if any, to avoid the eviction by payment of
the arrearages and liquidated damages in accordance with RSA 540:9.
540:4 Demand. Such demand shall be sufficient if made upon the tenant
or occupant at any time after the rent becomes due and prior to the service
of such notice to quit.
540:5 Service of Demand and Notice to Quit. Any notice of a demand
for rent or a notice to quit may be served by any person and may be served
upon the tenant personally or left at his last and usual place of abode. Proof
of service must be shown by a true and attested copy of the notice
accompanied by an affidavit of service, but the affidavit need not be sworn
under oath. A notice of a demand for rent shall be sufficient if served upon
the tenant at any time after the rent becomes due and prior to the service of
a notice to quit.
540:6 Violation of Lease. Repealed
540:7 Demand of Rent. Where, to constitute a forfeiture for a violation
of the condition of a written lease, a demand of rent is required such
demand may be made as provided in section 5.
540:8 Time of. Such demand may be made when the rent is due or while
it is in arrears, but the lessor shall not demand a greater sum than the whole
rent in arrears when demand is made.
540:9 Payment After Notice. No tenancy shall be terminated for
nonpayment of rent, utility charges, or any other lawful charge contained in
a lease or an oral or written rental agreement if the tenant, before the
expiration of the notice, pays or tenders all arrearages plus $15.00 as
liquidated damages; provided, however, that a tenant may not defeat an
eviction for non-payment by use of this section more than 3 times in one
540:9-a Payment by Voucher and Application of Rents Paid by the
Municipality. Any rental payment or partial rental payment tendered by
the tenant in the form of a written promise to pay on behalf of the tenant by
a municipality of this state, and any application by the municipality of
amounts owed to it by a landlord pursuant to RSA 165:4-a, shall constitute
payment by the tenant of the amount represented in the voucher, and of any
amount applied by the municipality to delinquent balances of the landlord;
provided, that this section shall not be construed to obligate a landlord to
accept partial rental payments or payments tendered after the expiration of
the notice to quit.
540:10 Holding Over. Repealed.
540:11 Termination by Lessee. A lessee may terminate his lease by
notice in writing, in the same manner as the lessor, and the notice shall have
the same effect for all purposes as a notice by the lessor to the lessee.
540:12 Possessory Action. The owner, lessor, or purchaser at a
mortgage foreclosure sale of any tenement or real estate may recover
possession thereof from a lessee, occupant, mortgagor, or other person in
possession, holding it without right, after notice in writing to quit the same
as herein prescribed.
540:13 Writ; Service; Discovery; Record; Default.
I. A writ of summons may be issued, returnable before a district court,
setting forth in substance that the plaintiff is entitled to the possession of
the demanded premises, and that the defendant is in possession thereof
without right, after notice in writing, to quit the same at a day named
II. The writ shall be accompanied by a notice from the district court,
printed in no smaller than 12-point type, informing the tenant that:
(a) If the tenant wishes to contest the eviction, he must file an
appearance in the district court no later than the return day appearing on
(b) The tenant shall not be evicted unless the court so orders; however,
such an order may be granted if the tenant does not file an appearance.
(c) At the time the tenant files his appearance, he may request that the
court make a sound recording of the eviction hearing by checking an
appropriate box on the appearance form.
(d) If the tenant wishes to appeal the district court's decision, he must:
(1) File a notice of intent to appeal with the district court within 7
days of the notice of the district's decision; and
(2) File a notice of appeal in the supreme court within 30 days of the
notice of the district court's decision; and
(3) Pay all rent, as it comes due, between the date of the notice of
intent to appeal the district court's decision and the final disposition of the
III. The writ of summons and the notice provided in paragraph II shall
be returnable 7 days from the day of service of the writ by the sheriff.
IV. Both parties shall have a right to engage in discovery prior to the
hearing on the merits within such time frame as may be established for
eviction actions by the Rules of the District Court.
V. If the tenant files an appearance, notice of the hearing shall be
scheduled to occur within 10 days after such filing, with allowance for
additional time pursuant to paragraph IV, with notice of the hearing mailed
to the parties no fewer than 6 days prior to the hearing. If the tenant fails
to file an appearance or fails to appear at the hearing on the merits, the
court shall mail a notice of default to the address set forth on the summons
at least 3 days prior to the issuance of the writ of possession.
VI. In deciding any contested hearing, the court shall issue a written
decision setting forth the basis for its decision.
540:13-a Defense to Retaliation. Except in cases in which the tenant
owes the landlord the equivalent of one week's rent or more, it shall be a
defense to any possessory action, as to residential property, that such
possessory action was in retaliation for the tenant:
I. Reporting a violation or reporting in good faith what the tenant
reasonably believes to be a violation of RSA 540-A or an unreasonable and
substantial violation of a regulation or housing code to the landlord or any
board, agency or authority having powers of inspection, regulation or
enforcement as to the reasonable fitness of said residential property for
health or safety;
II. Initiating an action in good faith pursuant to RSA 540-A or availing
himself of the procedures of RSA 540:13-d; or
III. Meeting or gathering with other tenants for any lawful purpose.
540:13-b Evidence of Intent to Retaliate. Unless the court finds that
the act of the tenant in making a report or complaint or in initiating an
action or in organizing relative to alleged violations by a landlord was
primarily intended to prevent any eviction, a rebuttable presumption that
such possessory action was in retaliation of the tenant's action shall be
created when any possessory action, increase in rent or any substantial
alteration in the terms of the tenancy is instituted by a landlord within 6
I. The landlord received notice of any such alleged violation provided
(a) The tenant mailed, gave in hand to, or left at the abode of the
landlord notice of the report or complaint of the alleged violation; or
(b) The landlord received notice of the complaint or report from the
board, agency or authority; or
II. The landlord completed repairs or otherwise successfully remedied
such violation; or
III. The landlord received notice that the tenant had initiated an action
pursuant to RSA 540-A; or
IV. The discovery by the landlord of activity protected by RSA
540:13-c Discretionary Stay Dependent on Payment of Rent.
I. If the defendant defaults, or confesses judgment, or if on trial the court
rules that the landlord has sustained his complaint, judgment shall be
rendered that the landlord recover possession of the premises and costs. A
writ of possession shall be issued, provided that, the court may order the
tenant shall not be dispossessed until a date not later than 3 months from
such default, confession of judgment, or ruling of the court, provided the
court decides that under all the circumstances justice requires such stay,
based on the reasonableness and good faith of the parties in their respective
reports, complaints, demands, and evidence. In the event of any such stay
of dispossession, the tenant shall pay the landlord weekly in advance the
weekly former rent, or the proportional weekly part of the former rent if
rent was payable less often than weekly, and on default of any such
advance weekly payment a writ of possession shall be issued and the sheriff
shall evict the tenant as soon as possible.
II. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit the parties in a
case of nonpayment of rent from agreeing that, in spite of judgement for
the plaintiff, a writ of possession shall not be issued, if the defendant makes
payments in accordance with a schedule designated in the agreement.
However, if such payments are not made when due, a writ of possession
shall be issued upon request of the plaintiff.
540:13-d Defence to Violations of Fitness.
I. No action for possession based on non-payment of rent shall be
maintained in regard to any premises leased or rented for residential
purposes, other than for vacation or recreation, if such premises are in
substantial violation of the standards of fitness for health and safety set
forth in RSA 48-A or in local codes, ordinances or by-laws established
pursuant thereto, and such violation materially affects the habitability of
said premises, provided that:
(a) The tenant proves by clear and convincing evidence that, while not
in arrears in rent, he provided notice of the violation to the person to whom
he customarily pays rent; and
(b) The landlord failed to correct the violations within 14 days of the
receipt of such written notice or, in an emergency, as promptly as
conditions require; and
(c) The violations were not caused by the tenant, a member of the
tenant's family or other person on the premises with the tenant's consent;
(d) Necessary repairs have not been prevented due to extreme whether
conditions or due to the failure of the tenant to allow the landlord
reasonable access to the premises.
II. If a defendant raises a defence provided in paragraph I of this section,
the court may order the action continued for a reasonable time not to
exceed one month to enable the plaintiff to remedy the violation. At the
time such continuance is ordered, the court shall require the person
claiming a defence under this section to pay into court any rent withheld or
becoming due thereafter as it becomes due. Upon a finding by the court
that the violation has been remedied within the continuance period, the
court shall dismiss the possessory action and either award the withheld rent
money to the plaintiff or apportion the rent paid into the court by paying to
the plaintiff the fair rental value of the premises while in the substantially
defective condition and by awarding the remainder of said funds to the
defendant as damages for plaintiff's breach of his warranty of habitability. If
the violation has not been remedied within such period, the court shall
enter judgment for the defendant and refund to the defendant all money
I. If the defendant makes default, or if on trial it is considered by the
court that the plaintiff has sustained his complaint, judgment shall be
rendered that the plaintiff recover possession of the demanded premises
and costs, and a writ of possession shall issue. The judgment may be
enforced, at the sole discretion of the plaintiff, either by directing the sheriff
to serve the writ of possession or by seeking judicial relief against the
defendant for civil contempt. A writ of possession shall authorize the
sheriff to remove the defendant from the premises.
II. Whenever the tenant successfully raises the defense of retaliation
pursuant to RSA 540:13-a, damages of not more than 3 months' rent may
be awarded to the tenant.
540:15 Neglect to Enter, etc. If the plaintiff neglects to enter his action,
or fails to support it, judgment shall be rendered for the defendant for his
540:16 General Issue. Under the general issue, the defendant shall not
offer evidence which may bring the title to the demanded premises in
540:16-a Hearsay Exception. In any possessory action based on
allegations concerning the behavior of the defendant or his family or guests,
records of complaints made by other tenants to the landlord or his agent
concerning such behavior shall be competent evidence if:
I. The landlord or other qualified witness testifies to its identity and the
mode of its preparation;
II. It was made at or near the time of the receipt of the complaint; and
III. In the opinion of the court, the sources of information, method and
time of preparation, and proximity in time of the complaint to the alleged
tenant behavior, were such as to justify its admission.
540:17 Plea of Title, Recognizance. If the defendant shall plead a plea
which may bring in question the title to the demanded premises he shall
forthwith recognize to the plaintiff, with sufficient sureties, in such sum, as
the court shall order, to enter his action in the superior court for the county
at the next return day, and to prosecute his action in said court, and to pay
all rent then due or which shall become due pending the action, and the
damages and costs which may be awarded against him.
540:18 Effect of Plea, etc. After the filing of such plea and the entry of
such recognizance no further proceedings shall be had before the municipal
court, but the action may be entered and prosecuted in the superior court in
the same manner as if it were originally begun there.
540:19 Neglect to Recognize. If the defendant neglects or refuses to
recognize, judgment shall be rendered against him in the same manner as if
he had refused to make answer to the suit.
540:20 Appeal. Any party to an action brought pursuant to this chapter
shall, within 7 days of the notice of judgment date, file in the district court
notice of intent to appeal to the supreme court. Said appeal shall otherwise
be filed in accordance with supreme court rule. In all other respects, the
judgment of the district court shall be final at the expiration of the appeal
540:21 Procedure on. Repealed
540:22 Neglect to Enter Appeal. If the appellant neglects to enter his
appeal or to produce such copies the court, on complaint of the appellee,
shall affirm the former judgment, with additional damages and costs.
540:23 Plaintiff's Damages. If a defendant files a plea of title or appeals,
and the plaintiff recovers judgment against the defendant, the court shall
cause plaintiff's damages, exemplary or otherwise, including a just
compensation for the use and detention of the property and for any injury
thereto, to be assessed and may issue execution therefor, or the same may
be recovered on the recognizance taken as before provided.
540:24 Recognizance, by Plaintiff. The plaintiff, before his appeal is
allowed, shall recognize to the defendant, with sufficient sureties, in such
sum as the court may order, to enter and prosecute his appeal, and to pay
such costs as may be awarded against him.
540:25 Recognizance, by Defendant. The defendant shall pay into court
or to the plaintiff, as the court directs, all rents becoming due from the date
the notice of intent to appeal is filed with the district court. In any case in
which the duty to pay rent or a portion thereof is in dispute, the defendant
shall be required to pay such portion of the rents becoming due after the
notice of intent is filed into court, as the court may direct, which amounts
shall be held by the court in escrow until a final decision is rendered. After
such decision has been rendered, the escrowed rent money and any accrued
interest thereon shall be apportioned between plaintiff and defendant on the
basis of a finding of rent actually due. For the purpose of this section,
"rent" shall mean the amount of money called for by the lease or rental
agreement at the time the action for possession was instituted.
540:26 Other Remedies. Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to
prevent a landlord from pursuing his legal remedy at common law.
540:27 Landlord's Grantee. Whenever the estate occupied by a tenant
at will or sufferance is conveyed be the landlord his grantee shall have the
rights and remedies which the grantor would have had, under the
provisions of this chapter, if the estate had not been conveyed.
540:28 Lease Provisions. No lease or rental agreement, oral or written,
shall contain any provision by which a tenant waives any of his rights under
this chapter, and any such waiver shall be null and void.
540:29 Conflict of Laws. Any provisions of federal law relating to rental
units owned, operated or subsidized by the federal government which are
inconsistent with or contrary to the provisions of this chapter shall
supersede the provisions of this chapter. Where not inconsistent, the
provisions of federal law shall apply in conjunction with the provisions of
Chapter 540-A: PROHIBITED PRACTICES AND SECURITY
540-A:1 Definitions. As used in this subdivision:
I. "Landlord" means an owner, lessor or agent thereof who rents or
leases residential premises including manufactured housing or space in a
manufactured housing park to another person.
II. "Tenant" means a person to whom a landlord rents or leases
residential premises, including manufactured housing or a space in a
manufactured housing park.
III. "Premises" means the part of the landlord's property to which the
tenant is entitled exclusive access for living or storage as a result of the
rental or lease agreement.
540-A:2 General Prohibition. No landlord shall willfully violate a
tenant's right to quiet enjoyment of his tenancy or attempt to circumvent
lawful procedures for eviction pursuant to RSA 540. No tenant shall
willfully damage the property of the landlord or prevent completion of
necessary repairs or willfully deny tenants their right to quiet enjoyment of
540-A:3 Certain Specific Acts Prohibited.
I. No landlord shall willfully cause, directly or indirectly, the interruption
or termination of any utility service being supplied to the tenant including,
but not limited to water, heat, light, electricity, gas, telephone, sewerage,
elevator or refrigeration, whether or not the utility service is under the
control of the landlord, except for such temporary interruption as may be
necessary while actual repairs are in process or during temporary
II. No landlord shall willfully seize, hold, or otherwise directly or
indirectly deny a tenant access to and possession of such tenant's rented or
leased premises, other than through proper judicial process.
III. No landlord shall willfully seize, hold, or otherwise directly or
indirectly deny a tenant access to and possession of such tenant's property,
other than by proper judicial process.
IV. No landlord shall willfully enter into the premises of the tenant
without prior consent, other than to make emergency repairs.
V. No tenant shall willfully refuse the landlord access to the premises to
make necessary repairs at a reasonable time after notice which is adequate
under the circumstances.
VI. No tenant shall willfully damage the property of the landlord.
VII. A landlord shall maintain and exercise reasonable care in the storage
of the personal property of a tenant who has vacated the premises, either
voluntarily or by eviction, for a period of 45 days after the date upon which
such tenant has vacated. After the 45-day limit has expired, such personal
property may be disposed of by the landlord without notice to the tenant.
I. All district courts shall have concurrent jurisdiction with the superior
court to enforce the provisions of RSA 540-A:2 and RSA 540-A:3.
II. Any tenant or landlord may seek relief from a violation of RSA
540-A:2 or RSA 540-A:3 by filing a petition in the district or county where
the rental premises are located.
III. No filing fee shall be charged for a petition under paragraph II, and
the plaintiff may proceed without legal counsel. Either a peace officer or
the sheriff's department shall serve process under this section and the cost
of such service shall be billed as directed by the court pursuant to
paragraph X. Any proceeding under this subdivision shall not preclude any
other available civil or criminal remedy
IV. The clerks of the district courts shall supply forms for petitions for
relief under this subdivision designed to facilitate proceedings.
V. The findings of facts shall be final but questions of law may be
transferred to the supreme court in the same manner as from the superior
VI. The court shall hold a hearing within 30 days of the filing of a
petition under paragraph II or within 10 days of service of process upon
the defendant, whichever occurs later.
VII. Upon a showing of a violation of RSA 540-A:2 or RSA 540-A:3, I,
II, or III, the court shall grant such relief as is necessary to protect the
rights of the parties. Such relief may include:
(a) An order prohibiting the defendant from continuing the activity or
activities which violate RSA 540-A:2 or RSA 540-A:3;
(b) An award of damages to the plaintiff for the violations of RSA
540-A, breach of warranty of habitability, breach of the covenant of quiet
enjoyment or any other claim arising out of the facts alleged in the
VIII. Upon the showing of an immediate threat of irreparable harm, the
court may issue such temporary orders as it deems necessary to protect the
parties with or without actual notice to the defendant. If temporary orders
are made ex parte, the party against whom such relief is issued may file a
written request with the clerk of the court and request a hearing on such
request. Such hearing shall be held no later than 5 days after the request is
received by the clerk. Such hearings may constitute the final hearing
described in paragraph VI.
IX. Any landlord or tenant who violates RSA 540-A:2 or any provision
of RSA 540-A:3 shall be subject to the civil remedies set forth in RSA
358-A:10, including costs and reasonable attorney's fees incurred in the
proceedings. Each day that a violation continues shall constitute a separate
X. If an action initiated under RSA 540-A:3 is found to be frivolous or
brought solely for harassment, the plaintiff shall pay to the defendant the
costs of said action including reasonable attorney's fees. If such frivolous
action was brought by the tenant, he shall not be entitled to the protection
of paragraph XI of this section.
XI. No action for possession may be maintained by the landlord against
a tenant who proves a violation of RSA 540-A:3 except for nonpayment of
rent, violation of a substantial obligation of the rental agreement or lease,
or violation of this subdivision within 6 months of an action instituted
under this subdivision by a tenant; nor shall the landlord take any other
action in reprisal.
540-A:5 Definitions. As used in this subdivision:
I. "Landlord" means a person and his or its employees, officers or agents
who rents or leases to another person a rental unit, including space in a
manufactured housing park as regulated by RSA 205-A and in
manufactured housing, for other than vacation or recreational purposes. A
person who rents or leases a single family residence and owns no other
rental property or who rents or leases rental units in an owner-occupied
building of 5 units or less shall not be considered a "landlord" for the
purposes of this subdivision, except for any individual unit in such building
which is occupied by a person or persons 60 years of age or older.
II. "Security deposit" means all funds in excess of the monthly rent which
are transferred from the tenant to the landlord for any purpose.
III. "Tenant" means any person who rents or leases residential premises
owned by another, including space in a manufactured housing park
regulated by RSA 205-A and in manufactured housing, for other than
vacation or recreational purposes.
IV. "Rental unit" means each separate part of any residential premises
which has full facilities for habitation, including contiguous living, sleeping,
kitchen and bathroom facilities, which is held out for rental by the landlord.
I. A landlord shall not demand or receive any security deposit in an
amount or value in excess of one month's rent or $100, whichever is
greater. Upon receiving a deposit from a tenant, a landlord shall forthwith
deliver to the tenant a signed receipt stating the amount of the deposit and
specifying the place where the deposit or bond for the deposit pursuant to
RSA 540-A:6, II (c) will be held, and shall notify the tenant that any
conditions in the rental unit in need of repair or correction should be noted
on the receipt or given to the landlord in writing within 5 days of
II. (a) Security deposits held by a landlord continue to be the money of
the tenant and shall be held in trust by the person with whom such deposit
is made and shall not be mingled with the personal moneys or become an
asset of the landlord until the provisions of RSA 540-A:7 are complied
with, but may be disposed of as provided in RSA 540-A:6, III.
(b) A landlord may mingle all security deposits held by him in a single
account held in trust for the tenant at any bank, savings and loan
association or credit union organized under the laws of this state in
satisfaction of the requirements of RSA 540-A:6, II (a).
(c) A bond written by a company located in New Hampshire and posted
with the clerk of the city or town in which the residential premises are
located in an amount equivalent to the total value of a security deposit held
by the landlord on property in that city or town shall exempt the landlord
from the provisions of RSA 540-A:6, II (a) and (b).
III. (a) Any landlord who holds a security deposit shall turn the security
deposit over at the time of delivery of the deed or instrument of
assignment, or within 5 days thereafter, or within 5 days after a receiver
has been qualified, to one of the following:
(1) his grantee upon conveying the premises in which the rental unit is
(2) his assignee upon assigning his lease to the rental unit;
(3) the receiver in a foreclosure action or other lien of record affecting
the property in which the rental unit is located, upon the judicial
appointment and qualification of the receiver; or
(4) the purchaser at a foreclosure sale or other lien of record, if a
receiver has not been qualified, upon the conveyance to another person by
the referee of the property in which the rental unit is located.
(b) The landlord shall notify the tenant by registered or certified mail of
such turning over, including the name and address of the grantee, assignee,
purchaser, or receiver who then holds the security deposit.
(c) Any landlord who turns over to his grantee, his assignee, a
purchaser at a foreclosure sale, or the receiver in a foreclosure action the
amount of such security deposit with interest due, if any, is thereby relieved
of liability to the tenant for repayment of the deposit. The transferee of the
security deposit is then responsible for the return of the security deposit to
the tenant or licensee, unless, before the expiration of the term of the
tenant's lease or licensee's agreement, he transfers the security deposit to
another, pursuant to RSA 540-A:6, III (a) and gives the requisite notice
pursuant to RSA 540-A:6, III (b). A receiver shall hold the security subject
to its disposition as provided in an order of the court to be made and
entered in the foreclosure action.
(d) RSA 540-A:6, III (c) shall not apply if there is an inconsistent
agreement between the landlord and tenant or licensee.
IV. (a) A landlord who holds a security deposit for a period of one year
or longer shall pay to the tenant interest on the deposit at a rate equal to
the interest rate paid on regular savings accounts in the New Hampshire
bank, savings and loan association, or credit union in which it is deposited,
commencing from the date the landlord receives the deposit or from
September 13, 1977, whichever is later. If a landlord mingles security
deposits in a single account under RSA 540-A:6, II(b), the landlord shall
pay the actual interest earned on such account proportionately to each
(b) Upon request, a landlord shall provide to the tenant the name of any
bank, savings and loan association, or credit union where his security
deposit is on deposit, the account number, the amount on deposit, and the
interest rate on the deposit and shall allow the tenant to examine his
security deposit records.
(c) Notwithstanding RSA 540-A:7, I, a tenant may request the interest
accrued on a security deposit every 3 years, 30 days before the expiration
of that year's tenancy The landlord shall comply with the request within 15
days of the expiration of that year's tenancy.
540-A:7 Return of Security Deposit.
I. Except as provided in RSA 540-A:6, IV (c), a landlord shall return a
security deposit to a tenant and pay the interest due, if any, within 30 days
from the termination of the tenancy. If there are any damages to the
premises, excluding reasonable wear and tear, the landlord may deduct the
costs of repair from the security deposit. The landlord shall provide the
tenant with a written, itemized list of any damages for which the landlord
claims the tenant is liable, which shall indicate with particularity the nature
of any repair necessary to correct any damage and satisfactory evidence
that repair necessary to correct these damages has been or will be
completed. Satisfactory evidence may include, but not be limited to,
receipts for purchased repair materials and labor estimates, bills or invoices
indicating the actual or estimated cost thereof.
II. If the tenant is required under the lease agreement to pay all or part of
any increase in real estate taxes levied against the property and becoming
due and payable during the term of the lease, or if there is unpaid rent due,
the landlord may deduct such share of real estate taxes or unpaid rent from
be amount of the security deposit. The landlord shall provide the tenant
with a written, itemized list of any claim for unpaid rent or share of real
estate taxes for which the landlord claims the tenant is liable, which shall
indicate with particularity the period for which the claim is being made.
I. (a) Any landlord who does not comply with RSA 540-A:6, I, II or III
shall be deemed to have violated RSA 358-A:2.
(b) Any landlord who does not comply with RSA 540-A:6, IV or RSA
540-A:7 shall be liable to the tenant in damages in an amount equal to
twice the sum of the amount of the security deposit plus any interest due
under this subdivision, less any payments made and any charges owing for
damages, unpaid rent, or share of real estate taxes as specified in RSA
II. Notwithstanding RSA 540-A:6, 540-A:7, and 540-A:8, I, a landlord
shall not be liable nor forfeit any rights if his failure to comply with said
sections and paragraph is due to the failure of the tenant to notify the
landlord of his new address upon termination of the tenancy. Any deposits
plus interest due on the deposit that remain unclaimed after 6 months from
the termination of the tenancy shall become the property of the landlord,
free and clear of any claim of the tenant, absent fraud.
III. Any provision in any lease or rental agreement by which the tenant is
purported to waive any of his rights under this subdivision, except as
provided in RSA 540-A:6, III (d), shall be void.