3 Ways a Landlord Can Take a Security Deposit

Most think that when they pay a landlord security deposit on a rental property they will never get it back. However, there are only a few reasons a landlord can actually keep your deposit. The landlord must provide you with an itemized statement explaining how your deposit was used. Then, once you move out, the deposit plus interest must be returned to you. The deposit must be returned within 30-60 days, depending on the law in your area. There are a few things that a landlord can deduct from your deposit:

  1. If you fail to give the agreed required notice before moving out, you may forfeit some or all of your deposit, so be sure to provide your landlord with the required notice as well as a forwarding address as soon as you know you are moving. Check your lease agreement for specific dates.
  2. The landlord can keep some or all of the deposit to cover the cost of damages caused to the property by you or your guests. They are NOT allowed to keep the deposit to cover the cost of normal wear and tear.
  3. The landlord can keep a portion of the deposit to pay for cleaning the property if you did not leave it in good condition.
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