Will I face problems for the bad state of my apartment when I move out? 8 Answers as of June 08, 2011

I moved out of my Apartment April 14 2011. Prior to moving in the leasing manager, myself, my husband & my mother in law performed a walk through of the apartment. It was noted in the file that there were stains in the carpet that were not able to be taken out prior to moving in. I cleaned the carpet Jan 31, 2011. We are being informed that we will get charged a fee to clean the carpet. Is this legal?

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Law Offices of Steven A. Fink
Law Offices of Steven A. Fink | Steven Alan Fink
Civil Code Section 1950.5 permits the landlord to withhold from the security deposit amounts necessary for cleaning and repairs. Did you have a professional service clean the apartment? Did they also note stains that cannot be removed? You cannot be charged for preexisting damage or spots. They can charge you to clean the carpeting if other areas were dirty. They have to provide you with an invoice showing they actually incurred the charges. The balance of your deposit has to be returned within 21 days after you move out.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 6/8/2011
Palumbo and Kosofsky
Palumbo and Kosofsky | Michael Palumbo
It is a civil matter. If you believe the landlord improperly withholds all or part of you security deposit, take them to small claims court.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 6/7/2011
The Coyle Law Office
The Coyle Law Office | T. Andrew Coyle
It is not legal, but if you don't have anything in writing stating that the carpet was stained when you moved in, it may be difficult for you to win in court. You may want to ask the leasing manager for a copy of all the documents from when you first moved in and see if you can find something in there that shows that the carpets were stained.
Answer Applies to: Illinois
Replied: 6/7/2011
Komanapalli Massey LLP
Komanapalli Massey LLP | Mark A. Massey, Esq.
They are entitled to use part of your security deposit to clean the apartment in order to restore it to the same state of cleanliness it was in at the time you took possession.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 6/7/2011
Law Offices of Timothy G. Kearney, LLC
Law Offices of Timothy G. Kearney, LLC | Timothy G. Kearney
Assuming the stains were present at the time of the move in and they are documented, and you did not further damage the carpet (excluding normal wear and tear) you should not be liable for the damage.
Answer Applies to: Connecticut
Replied: 6/6/2011
    Goolsby Law Office
    Goolsby Law Office | Richard Goolsby
    One problem you face is that the costs of suing the former landlord down the road might exceed the possible benefit. You might want to talk with a lawyer in your community or inquire about a small claims court. Good luck!
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 6/6/2011
    Frances R. Johnson
    Frances R. Johnson | Frances R. Johnson
    The short answer without knowing more is yes. If you have a dispute as to whether you're responsible for the cleaning that the landlord wants to charge you for, you can file a small claims court suit. However, if the issue is decided against you, you could owe the landlord his/her court costs.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 6/6/2011
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