Behind on Rent? Need a Security Deposit?
Click here to apply for emergency rental assistance through Dane County CORE.
The Tenant Resource Center maintains information on community resources that may be available to provide eviction prevention funds, security deposit funds, and other emergency financial assistance. See our brochures in pdf format:
- Eviction Prevention and Security Deposit Assistance in Dane County (Stay Tuned! This brochure is being updated for the latest information.)
Many may be interested in a referral to one of the many agencies, faith groups, community groups, nonprofit groups, and individuals that provide assistance to those in crisis. Many of these local services can also be found through United Way's First Call for Help, 2-1-1.
We Help Tenants, Landlords and Service Providers
The Tenant Resource Center offers free information to Dane County tenants, landlords and service providers interested in learning more about their rental rights and responsibilities. Unfortunately, our funding for services outside Dane County was cut during the administration of Governor Scott Walker and has not been restored. While we would like to provide our services to everyone in Wisconsin, these budget cuts prevent us from doing so. With your help, we can resume serving all Wisconsin residents. Please consider making a one time donation, or a monthly donation to help us expand and keep our services free!
For the fastest help on common housing issues, please browse the links below:
- Apartment Safety
- Carpet Cleaning
- (Renting with a) Criminal Conviction or Arrest Record
- Credit Reports
- Debt Collection
- Ending A Lease (subletting, moving out early, death of a tenant, illegal lease clauses, etc)
- Fair Housing Laws
- Landlord Entry
- Landlord Retaliation
- Moving Out of One Apartment and into Another (cleaning, checking out and in, helpful basics)
- Pets and Service Animals
- Preparing to Rent (choosing where to rent, paying fees, disclosures, etc.)
- Tenant Property / Property Left Behind
- Roommates and You
- Security Deposits
- Repairs in Wisconsin
Madison and Fitchburg-Specific
- Parking in the City of Madison
- Quick & Dirty Guide to Renting in Madison (rental basics for Madison, choosing an apartment)
- Repairs in Madison and Fitchburg (heating, pest infestations, appliances, lawns/grounds, fires and floods, etc.)
If you can't get your questions answered from our online resources, please contact us:
Housing Counseling Services:
Monday - Friday | 9am - 4pm
- Housing Questions (Dane County): (608) 257-0006
- UW-Madison Office: (608) 216-2321
- En Español: (608) 257-0006 x 1
- Lus Hmoob: (608) 257-0006 x 2
Sample Letters for Tenants
- Roommate Agreement
- Breaking a lease
- Wrongfully withheld security deposit
- Landlord references to submit with application
- Requesting repairs
- Requesting heat be turned on in unit
- Requesting heat be repaired
- Reply to eviction notice over non-payment of rent
- Reply to eviction notice over rules violations
- Disputing an eviction notice
- Responding to a verbal conversation
- Applications to new landlords when your old landlord is giving a bad reference
- Applications to new landlords when renting with a criminal history
- Applications to new landlords when you owe money to your old landlord
- Applications to new landlords when you have bad credit history
Forms for Tenants
- Check-In Form
- Check-Out Form
- Rent Payment Agreement
- Roommate Agreement
- Security Deposit Payment Agreement
- Sublet Agreement
- Non-renewal of Month-to-Month Tenancy
- Termination of Tenancy by Mutual Agreement
Useful Blog Posts for Tenants
Check blog posts for any location-specific information as housing laws may differ!
- "Get it in Writing"
- "How to Write a Letter"
- "Negotiation 101"
- "Small Claims Court Tips"
- "Reading Your Lease"
- "Joint and Several Liability"
- "CCAP: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly"
- "Dealing With Unwelcome Guests"
- "Landlord References"
- "Renting with Disabilities"
- "Normal Wear and Tear"
- "Constructive Eviction"
- "Winter No-Go Clauses"
- "Non-Standard Rental Provisions"
- "Is Your Heat On?"
- "Security Deposit Myths Debunked!"
- "Domestic Abuse: For Tenants"
- "Landlord Entry: Dispelling the Confusion"
- "Eviction Notice Responses"
Laws, Statutes and Ordinances
- Wis. Stat. 704
- Wisconsin Administrative Code ATCP 134
- Wis. Stat. 799
- Madison General Ordinances
- Fitchburg Ordinances
- Recent Legislation