Featured News 2013 About Security Deposits

About Security Deposits

Almost every renter in a house or an apartment has to pay out a security deposit before he or she can move into the new location. This is a deposit that you may get back at the end of your time renting the home or the apartment if you can prove that you are reliable and do not damage the property, fail to pay rent, or violate another part of your renter's agreement.

A landlord has the right to deduct money from your security deposit to pay for any maintenance or repairs that are a result of your errors. For example, if there are holes in the walls from hanging pictures, or if there are broken tiles or fixtures in the bathrooms, then these can also be paid for using money from your deposit.

A landlord can also use your deposit money to cover toilet misuse, broken walls, broken windows or window screens, excessive mildew or mold in the bathroom, broken or missing window blinds, appliances broken by negligence, animal stains on the carpet, paint removal, or excessively filthy bathtubs, showers, sinks and toilets.

Normally, faded paint and wallpaper, warped doors, dusting, broken lightbulbs, furniture marks on the carpet, dirty blinds and curtains, and broken plumbing are not damages that can be deducted from a person's security deposit. A landlord is also not permitted to deduct from a security deposit for replacement batteries in a smoke detector, pin holes in walls, warped windows, broken appliances that were not from misuse, and dents in walls that are from door handles.

If you moved out of an apartment or home only to receive a fraction of your original security deposit without any explanation, then you will want to talk with a real estate attorney, In most states, if a landlord does not return all of your security deposit when you move out and does not provide a written explanation of everything that was dedicated from your account, then you have every right to litigate.

In California, the landlord must provide receipts and repairs for any expenses that deducted more than $126 from an account. If a landlord violates this law, then it can facilitate a Wrongful Withholding of Security Deposit or a Wrongful Retention of Security Deposit lawsuit. If you do decide that you need to take legal action, then you may be able to recover all or some of your security deposit.

In some states, tenants are even allowed to request a move-out inspection by the landlord prior to leaving their apartment or home. This way, they can maximize the return of the security deposit. A tenant that is thinking of moving can have a landlord or a landlord's agent walk through the rental unit and make a list of any things that would be deducted from the security deposit if the tenant left the house as it was. By having a list, the tenant can come up with the necessary repairs himself and save the landlord from hiring a professional and deducting the costs.

If a landlord deducts money from your deposit to fix damages that were in the home when you moved there, then that can also be a serious situation that is worth challenging in a lawsuit. You will want to hire a real estate attorney and get evidence that prior owners caused the damages that you are now being penalized for. Don't hesitate to contact a local real estate attorney to represent you in your security deposit lawsuit today. Depending on which state you live in, your security deposit could be saved due to the right litigation!

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