How to Register a Rental property In Baltimore County

How do I register a rental property in Baltimore County and what properties need to be registered? Are there exceptions to the rule? These are all good questions!

Rental property registration in Baltimore County, Maryland is a bit more complicated than it is in Baltimore City. Today, we’re talking about the registration process for county properties.

Do You Need a License to Rent Out a House in Baltimore County?

Most landlords are required to be licensed however there are some exceptions to the rule if your property has 7 or more units you will not need to register or if you are renting your property to a grandparent, parent, child, or a grandchild you will not need to go through the full licensure process, however, you will still need to file the rental registration exemption affidavit.  Other exemptions include purchasing a property and allowing the previous owner to occupy the property for less than 12 months or renting out a room. If your property doesn’t meet any of the above criteria you will need to register your Baltimore county Rental so keep reading on!

Pro Tip: If you own an apartment building with 6 units, each unit will need a separate rental license and possibly a lead certificate if the building was constructed prior to 1978.

         Pro Tip: Baltimore County has strict laws on rooming and boarding houses! 

Registration for Baltimore County Rental Property: Documentation and Inspections

Home Inspection:

You’ll need to hire a home inspector, the cost varies depending on the inspector. They perform their inspection and give you an inspection sheet that you need to submit with your rental license application. All inspectors have certain areas that they pay more attention to but the big items to make sure you have inline are;

  • Smoke and carbon detectors- Installed and operational in the common areas and outside sleeping areas of the property as well as on each level of the house. They must be hardwired into the electrical system, have a battery back-up, and be interconnected.
  • Electrical system– No apparent hazards such as exposed wires, or outlets and switches that are missing covers
  • Plumbing– All plumbing systems must be functional and cannot have any leaks
  • Windows and doors– open and close as designed as well as lock.
  • Gas appliances– Furnace, dryer, water heater, etc are properly vented.
  • Secondary means of escape- You can escape a sleeping area through a window with minimal hazard in the event that escape is required.

Pro Tip: A home inspection is not required if you have rented your property to a voucher recipient such as section 8 or BRHP

Pro Tip: A new license is not required for each new resident, however, a new lead certificate may be required.

Lead Inspection:

If your property was build in or before 1978 you will also need to submit a lead certificate with the inspection sheet. We cover lead inspections in more detail here.


Baltimore County Property Registration: Process

Once you have your home inspection sheet signed and your lead certificate in hand you need to submit your paperwork to Baltimore County. The easiest way to do this is online. You can scan your lead certificate and home inspection as well as submitting a picture of the front and back of your property. You will need to submit the registration fees at the time of submission.

The fees for the submission:

Owner Occupied, one or two units: $48.00 per unit

Owner Occupied three or more units: $60 per unit

Non-owner occupied: $60 per unit.


Rental Property Registration: Penalties

Baltimore Property Manager Signing Rental Registration PapersIt’s important to maintain your registrations and keep them up. Otherwise, the county can fine you $25.00 for each day your property is not registered and the fine jumps to $200.00 per day for uncorrected violation notices.  Also, if your rental property isn’t registered, you cannot start a court proceeding or an eviction against your tenant. So, it’s an important thing to do.

If you have any questions about property registration or how to register rental property, please contact us at HomeWorks Property Management We’d be happy to help you with your Baltimore County Property Management needs.


>> Continue Reading Part 3 of “How to Register a Rental Property” Here <<