Best Practices to Ensure the Full Return of Your Funds

  • By interactive
  • 06 Jul, 2017
Security Deposit Funds - New Tremont Apartments

5 Best Practices That Will Help You Recover Your Security Deposit Funds

On average, security deposits equal one to two months’ rent with additional fees to compensate for bad credit or cover potential pet damages. If you do not take the proper steps before, during, and after your lease term, you could lose the entire security deposit at move-out. Luckily, you can follow the best practices listed below to increase your chances of receiving your security deposit back in full at the end of your rental period.

Perform a Thorough Move-In Inspection

Before you move your furniture and belongings into your Quincy IL apartments, take the time to perform a thorough walk-through of the premises. Look inside and out, detailing every blemish and imperfection on your inspection form. Take pictures of the damage or wear and tear for an additional layer of proof if the property manager ever decides to question your notes. Keep a copy of your pictures and inspection report in a safe place for reference at move-out.

Understand Deposit Use Restrictions

You can arm yourself with knowledge about local security deposit use restrictions to determine if your property owner is operating within the letter of the law. In most jurisdictions, the security deposit funds can only be used to cover past due rent and utilities or take care of cleaning and repairs of the dwelling. If your property owner wants to use the funds for anything beyond the approved line items, you can appeal the decision and retain your funds.

Report All Problems During Your Residency

Your property owner or manager must repair all problems with the rental unit during your stay, but that is only possible if you promptly report the issues when they occur. If you fail to report, you could actually be held responsible for the damage and have the cost of repairs taken out of your security deposit. Therefore, it is in your best interest to report all issues, big and small, throughout each lease period to ensure the rental remains in optimal condition.

Clean Top to Bottom Using Move-Out Checklist

When you start cleaning up the rental unit before moving out, obtain a move-out checklist from your property manager to make sure each area is cleaned to their expectations. Work through the list from top to bottom, taking care to clean each area using approved tools, products and techniques. If the cleaning products you use damage any finishes, you may end up having to pay for their restoration or replacement in full.

Write a Demand Letter or File a Civil Claim

If you follow this list and do not receive your security deposit funds back as expected, you can file a demand letter or a civil claim. Start with the demand letter that details the landlord-tenant law violations that occur and ask that the property owner comply with your security deposit return request. If that does not work, you can file a claim with the local civil court system to acquire part or all of your deposit back.

With these best practices in mind, you have the best chance at recovering your security deposit in full, especially if you leave your apartment clean and in great condition at move-out.

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