How to Get Back Your Security Deposit

by Isaac Benmergui, Esq on May 5, 2017

security depositSecurity deposits make moving from one rental to another expensive, and it’s hard to get a deposit back in many cases. Here are a few tips for getting that security deposit back in full.

First, plan ahead. When you move in, use removable hooks and putty to hang things up. They are easier to hang, and you’ll save yourself time trying to fill all the holes when you move out. Next, keep track of all those rental documents your landlord gives you. They will spell out exactly what you need to do to leave the rental in security-deposit returning condition, and you can also use it as a checklist when you are moving out. If you have roommates, make sure you move out together so that nothing is left to chance.

Take video. Landlords aren’t allowed to charge for regular “wear and tear” on a rental, but that term is slippery. Your best bet is to video everything on move-in and move out so you have photographic evidence that the blinds were already yellowed or that scratch on the mirror was already there when you moved in.

Contact your landlord in advance of planning your move to find out how much notice you have to give them. Even if your lease is up, many landlords consider renewing a forgone conclusion, so they require notice even before the lease ends. Not giving enough notice can also be cause for keeping that security deposit.

Confirm what all needs to be professionally cleaned, and keep all your receipts. Some rentals may require a complete professional cleaning, while others may only require it for carpets. Professionals will also be sure to catch details like cleaning floorboards and blinds, so it may be worth the investment anyway.

Have a mock inspection. A mock inspection with your landlord gives them a chance to point out problems so you can fix them before they cost you. Also make sure that you accompany you landlord on the final walk-through so that you agree on what the final figures are.

Call Miami Real Estate Lawyer Isaac Benmergui at 305.397.8547 and set up a no charge, no obligation consultation to discuss your case. We have over a decade of experience handling Real Estate and Civil Litigation cases throughout Miami and South Florida, and will use our expertise to help your case to the best of our abilities.

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