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Old 07-15-2010, 01:30 PM
 
4 posts, read 12,438 times
Reputation: 10

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Hi yall,

Looking for some advice here and any would be much appreciated. So the back story is I lived in this studio apartment downtown for 1 year and have moved out recently. I initially put down a $1100 security deposit. When I moved in the carpet was old and there was a large stain in the living area. I recently moved out of that apartment and I received a letter informing me that I would have to forfeit my entire deposit due to damages. I have attached the 3 photos of the damages that they assessed me for. Are these minor damages worth $1100 in deductions? If not what are my options in terms of trying to get at lease part of my deposit back?


thanks!

http://yfrog.com/592205mj
http://yfrog.com/jd22053j
http://yfrog.com/0s22054j

Last edited by tutu333; 07-15-2010 at 01:34 PM.. Reason: add
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Old 07-15-2010, 06:14 PM
 
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Did you sign anything or notify anyone upon move-in acknowledging the defects you saw? If not, then you may have a tough time proving your case.
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Old 07-15-2010, 08:55 PM
 
Location: Yardley PA
689 posts, read 2,147,060 times
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Agree with Tone ... unless you signed a checklist stating the condition of the house with the landlord upon move in, you are screwed (for lack of a better word).
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Old 07-15-2010, 08:55 PM
 
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No I did not but even if I do get charged for that damages seen in the photos...does that equate to $1100 worth of damages?
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Old 07-16-2010, 02:56 PM
 
316 posts, read 912,779 times
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Probably not, is it worth it for you to go to court over for you? That's what it comes down to for the most part. It may not cost $1100 to repair the apartment, but you may have to go to court to get it back.

And are you saying that none of that damage was your fault? That only some of it was? Or what? There are plenty of landlord-tenant laws out there to help you out, certainly ones for security deposits. In this area of the law, the burden falls heavily on landlords, because historically, they happily screwed their tenants over. Look into them and see your best options in your situation. One place to call is your state representative (maybe your city councilman) - if this is a pattern for your landlord, they would likely know (if they are doing their jobs that is).

Its hard to tell from the pictures - Is what you have in your apartment actual damage or normal wear and tear from living there? Normal wear and tear isn't cause for a landlord to keep the security deposit. Did your landlord notify you in writing about not returning the security deposit AND outline what the damages are? Is that how you got the pictures?

Also, were you a good tenant? Did you pay your rent? Did you leave with notice? Did you have any time left on your lease that went unpaid when you moved out? Basically, would your landlord counter-sue you for something else if you did take him to court?
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Old 07-19-2010, 09:46 PM
 
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The landlord did mail me a notice with a list of damages a month after I moved out. I got the photos after I called and requested that I see the damages they are describing since apparently all the damages had already been fixed. During my 1 year stay I was the perfect tenet. Always early on rent and zero problems. I'm pretty sure there is nothing they can counter sue me for. I admit that I prob did spill that bit of juice which ruined about 1ft x 1ft area of the rug and also those nail holes in the wall but I just not seeing how that adds up to 1100 in damages. They basically used the opportunity to replace all the rug in the apartment on my dime.

So I guess my ultimate question is: is it worth my time and effects to try to take them to small claims court or should I just throw in the towel and more on.
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Old 07-19-2010, 11:10 PM
 
Location: South Philly
1,943 posts, read 6,426,940 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tutu333 View Post
So I guess my ultimate question is: is it worth my time and effects to try to take them to small claims court or should I just throw in the towel and more on.
You don't need to go to small claims court - Philadelphia has a landlord/tenant court. Just google it.

So, i doubt the damage you might have caused to the carpeting was worth $1100, OTOH, are you sure that's all the damage you did?

My last tenants were a nightmare. They kept asking me about the deposit and I said, "guys, i'm really not sure, there is a lot of stuff messed up over here and I've only started to get estimates for it." The one tenant was incredulous and wanted me to show him everything so he met me over there and I showed him the giant burn mark on the brand new countertop where someone had put down a hot pot and just left it there. Then I showed him the big stain and sagging drywall from where his window AC unit had been dripping inside the house. Then I showed him the giant stain in the ceiling over the kitchen. There was a giant weed growing inside the downspout so every time there was a heavy rain the water backed up and leaked into the kitchen. Per most leases you're supposed to notify your landlord when something is leaking. Because it had been leaking for so long the damage in the kitchen was pretty extensive and because the weed had been growing for so long it took root in the masonry and wound up costing me $1000 to fix.

Their deposit was $900.

Before I had even finished showing him all the things they had broken he said, "OK, OK, I get it" and walked out hanging his head. He's lucky I didn't come after him for the other $1000.
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Old 07-20-2010, 07:20 AM
 
4 posts, read 12,438 times
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Thanks!
Yea the damages they assessed mostly includes new carpet and installation which they said costs 900. The rest is for holes and trash removal.
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Old 07-20-2010, 10:28 AM
 
Location: stuck
1,322 posts, read 3,878,726 times
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if nothing else learn from this experience.....always let the landlord know about any damages upon moving in!! there all scumbags!
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Old 07-21-2010, 11:26 AM
 
Location: Between Philadelphia and Allentown, PA
5,077 posts, read 13,615,360 times
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Also agree with others. When my daughter moved into her first place, I told her to take pictures of the carpet and everywhere. As it were, when she told the lanlord she would not be renewing her lease he tried to say her carpets were dirty when in fact she had photos from the day she picked up her keys. If you don't have any proof on your side, you may as well kiss that money gooodbye.
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