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New Mexico Tenant Rights

New Mexico Tenant Rights

New Mexico Tenant Rights: Everything You Need to Know

If you are a tenant in the state of New Mexico, it is important to understand your legal rights and protections. As a tenant, you have legal rights that are protected by state and federal law, and these rights extend to various aspects of the rental relationship, from safety and security, to privacy, and other tenant concerns.

In this article, we will discuss everything you need to know about New Mexico Tenant Rights. We’ll look at the state and federal laws that protect tenants, the various rights that tenants have, and explore the resources that are available to help tenants navigate their rights.

Understanding the Basics of New Mexico Tenant Rights

New Mexico is among the many states that have laws that protect tenants from landlord abuse, exploitation, and other unjust practices. These laws define the contractual relationship that exists between a tenant and their landlord and outline the legal requirements that New Mexico landlords must meet to treat their tenants fairly.

New Mexico tenant rights are covered under several state and federal laws. The primary federal laws that protect tenants are the Fair Housing Act of 1968, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the Fair Credit Reporting Act. These laws prohibit housing discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, and other protected categories, among other things.

In New Mexico, the Uniform Owner-Resident Relations Act (UORRA) provides the framework for tenant-landlord relations. This law regulates landlord-tenant relationships and sets standards for rental agreements, deposit handling, maintenance, and eviction processes. It also outlines the tenant’s rights to privacy, security, and habitability. Besides, the New Mexico State Constitution contains various provisions that protect tenants’ rights to due process and privacy.

Understanding Your Tenant Rights in New Mexico

As a tenant in New Mexico, you have several rights that are protected by law. Here are some of the most critical New Mexico tenant rights:

Right to a Habitable Unit

Landlords have a legal obligation to provide tenants with a safe, clean, and habitable unit. This means that the unit must have running water, electricity, and working plumbing, as well as heating and cooling systems. The unit must also meet basic safety standards and be free from health hazards, such as mold or lead paint.

Right to Privacy

Tenants have a right to privacy in their rental unit. This means that landlords cannot enter the unit without notice, except in emergencies or other specific circumstances. In New Mexico, landlords must provide tenants with at least 24 hours’ notice before entering the rental unit, except in emergencies.

Right to Security

Landlords have a legal obligation to provide tenants with a secure unit. This means that the rental unit must have working locks on all doors and windows and that the locks must be changed between tenants.

Right to Informed Consent

As a tenant, you have the right to be informed about matters that affect your tenancy. For example, landlords must inform tenants in writing before entering the rental unit, before making any changes to the rental agreement, and before raising the rent.

Right to Fair Housing

The Fair Housing Act prohibits housing discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, family status, and disability. This law covers nearly all types of housing, including single-family homes, apartments, and other dwellings. In New Mexico, tenants who feel they have been discriminated against can file a complaint with the New Mexico Human Rights Bureau.

Right Against Retaliation

Landlords in New Mexico cannot retaliate against tenants who exercise their legal rights or report violations of the law. For example, landlords cannot raise the rent, evict tenants, or reduce services because a tenant complained about a health or safety violation.

Tenant Obligations in New Mexico

While tenants have certain rights, they also have certain obligations under New Mexico law. Here are some key tenant obligations:

Paying Rent

Tenants have a legal obligation to pay rent on time, according to the terms specified in the rental agreement or lease. Failure to pay rent can result in eviction.

Reporting Problems

Tenants must report any problems or damage to the rental unit to the landlord as soon as possible. This helps to prevent further damage and ensure that repairs are made in a timely manner.

Keeping the Unit Clean

Tenants have an obligation to keep the rental unit clean and free from damage beyond normal wear and tear. They must also dispose of trash and other waste properly.

Abiding by the Terms of the Rental Agreement

Tenants must abide by the terms of the rental agreement or lease. This includes following the landlord’s rules, paying rent on time, and respecting the rights of other tenants.

Resources for New Mexico Tenants

If you are a tenant in New Mexico and have questions about your rights, there are several resources available to you. Here are some of the most helpful New Mexico tenant resources:

New Mexico Human Rights Bureau: The New Mexico Human Rights Bureau investigates complaints of housing discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, family status, and disability.

New Mexico Legal Aid: New Mexico Legal Aid provides free legal representation and advice to low-income residents in the state.

New Mexico Bar Association: The New Mexico Bar Association provides legal services and information to residents of the state, including tenant rights.

New Mexico Department of Finance and Administration: The New Mexico Department of Finance and Administration provides information on landlord-tenant relations and other legal issues.


Understanding New Mexico tenant rights is essential for tenants who want to ensure that they are treated fairly by their landlords. Whether you are a long-time tenant or a renter new to the state, it is crucial to know your rights and obligations under state and federal law.

As we have seen, New Mexico tenant rights cover various aspects of the landlord-tenant relationship, such as privacy, safety, habitability, and security, among others. Tenants also have obligations to their landlords, such as paying rent on time, keeping the unit clean, and abiding by the terms of the rental agreement.

By knowing your rights and obligations, you can ensure that the landlord-tenant relationship is fair and beneficial to both parties. If you have any questions about your tenant rights or need assistance in dealing with a landlord, reach out to the resources listed above to get help.

Quick Guide to New Mexico Tenant Rights

New Mexico Tenant Rights

Most NM tenant rights are located in §47-8 of the state’s updated statutes.

The majority of this article will reference information provided by the State Bar of New Mexico, and you can view a complete list of NM tenant rights provided by the state bar.

Obligations of Landlord to Respect Certain New Mexico Tenant Rights

According to the state bar and a New Mexico tenant right in legislative law under Chapter 47, a landlord is responsible for the following obligations:

• comply with all applicable housing and safety codes that protect NM tenant rights for safety and habitable living conditions

• make repairs and make all necessary adjustments to keep the premises in safe and habitable condition to protect the New Mexico tenant right

• keep all the common areas in sanitary and safe condition

• maintain and provide safe electrical, plumbing, sanitary, heating, ventilating, air conditioning, and all other appliances

• provide and maintain all trash receptacles

• supply running water, reasonable amounts of hot water, and a reasonable amount of heat in the units and determined by local NM tenant rights

New Mexico Tenant Rights and Entry from Landlord

If a landlord wants to enter the premises for inspection or to make necessary repairs, they must respect a New Mexico tenant right and give the tenant at least 24 hours to enter the premises.  If there is an emergency within the unit, a landlord does not need to adhere to NM tenant rights of a 24-hour notice any may enter the premises immediately.

New Mexico Tenant Rights and Security Deposits

A landlord cannot violate a New Mexico tenant right and charge more than 1 month’s rent in a month-to-month lease agreement.  However, if the lease agreement is for one year or more, the landlord can charge more than one month’s rent but the landlord must pay interest on the whole deposit according to a New Mexico tenant right.

Upon the termination of tenancy, a landlord must respect a New Mexico tenant right and provide an itemized list of deductions for damages within 30 days of the tenant moving out.  If the landlord does not respect NM tenant rights for an itemized list within 30 days, they will forfeit all rights to compensation for certain damages.

Additionally, New Mexico tenant rights allow the former tenant to sue the landlord for the return of the entire deposit if the remaining deposit is not forwarded in 30 days.  The tenant may also sue the landlord to include attorneys’ fees, and in some cases, a civil penalty of $250 according to NM tenant rights.

New Mexico Tenant Rights in Evictions

If a tenant has failed to pay rent or violated other conditions, the landlord must respect NM tenant rights and give a seven day notice to the tenant to remedy the problem.

If the tenant has failed to move out when required, the landlord must respect a New Mexico tenant right and give a 30-day notice before a court order is placed to remove the tenant.  In no cases can a landlord change locks or restrict access to the tenant according to a New Mexico tenant right.