Here is the information found in the Code of Virginia, in the Virginia Residential Landlord & Tenant Act, § 55.1-12 regarding an “Application Fee”.
According to § 55.1-1200, Definitions, of the Virginia Residential Landlord & Tenant Act, an “Application Fee” is any nonrefundable fee that is paid by a tenant to a landlord or managing agent for the purpose of being considered as a tenant for a dwelling unit.
In § 55.1-1203. Application; deposit, fee, and additional information, “A. Any landlord may require a refundable application deposit in addition to a nonrefundable application fee” and “C. An application fee shall not exceed $50, exclusive of any actual out-of-pocket expenses paid by the landlord to a third party performing background, credit, or other pre-occupancy checks on the applicant. However, where an application is being made for a dwelling unit that is a public housing unit or other housing unit subject to regulation by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, an application fee shall not exceed $32, exclusive of any actual out-of-pocket expenses paid to a third party by the landlord performing background, credit, or other pre-occupancy checks on the applicant.”