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Florida Governor DeSantis signs heavily debated renter fee bill

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Gov. Ron DeSantis on Friday signed a heavily debated bill that could lead to landlords collecting monthly fees instead of security deposits from renters.

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The bill (HB 133), which lawmakers approved in April, was one of 12 measures that DeSantis signed Friday.

Under the bill, landlords would be able to offer the option of paying monthly fees instead of security deposits, though landlords would not be required to do so. Renters would decide whether to pay the fees or deposits.

With rental costs soaring across the state, the bill’s supporters said it would provide an option to help renters get into apartments without having to come up with potentially thousands of dollars in upfront money. But opponents said the fees would not be capped and that renters wouldn’t be able to eventually recoup the money, like they might with security deposits.

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Also, after the renters move out, they could be forced to pay to repair damage to apartments, opponents said.

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