Is it legal for my landlord to change the apartment to get my security deposit back? 7 Answers as of July 20, 2011After moving out of an apartment, can a landlord go in and rip up the carpet and start painting "before" doing a "walk-through with the tenant in order to determine if the tenant can receive their security deposit back?
Law Office of Jared Altman | Jared Altman
There isn't any hard and fast rule about that. Landlords are notorious for trying to keep security deposits and tenants are notorious for not paying the last month or two's rent and letting the Landlord apply the security. If your rent is up to date, then you should receive your security back if you left the apartment in somewhat the same condition as you got it, subject to reasonable wear an tear.
Answer Applies to: New York
Law & Mediation Office of Jeffrey L. Pollock, Esq. | Jeffrey Lawrence Pollock
One should do a walk-through before the lease ends. Once your term is over, you have no control anymore. That being said, the Magistrate would need to weigh the Landlord's credibility of repairing everything before photos were taken, etc. to determine who is entitled to the Security Deposit.
Answer Applies to: Pennsylvania
Law Offices of Steven A. Fink | Steven Alan Fink
Tenants cannot be charged for "ordinary wear and tear." Landlord is required by Civil Code 1950.5 to provide you with receipts and to refund balance of deposit within 21 days of your move out. If the apartment did not need new carpet or paint any you can prove it, file suit in small claims for twice the amount of the deposit.
Answer Applies to: California
Frances R. Johnson | Frances R. Johnson
The landlord should not, but that question is completely separate from your recourse. If you do not receive the amount of security deposit you feel you are owed, you can consult an attorney, or attempt to pursue the issue in small claims court without an attorney if the amount owed is less than $5,000.
Answer Applies to: Colorado