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Old 11-22-2011, 03:34 AM
 
2 posts, read 9,004 times
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I might be having an issue with our apt. rental and am looking for some advice. We have lived in this complex for over 4 years now, we just signed a new 1 year lease on 11/1/11. The apt was remodeled a year ago including new carpet.

We have 2 small dogs and are very thorough about making sure they do not go on our carpet. I steam clean the carpets every month as well as run a UV black light weekly to sure up any mishaps our little guys might have had.

Ok so, up until now there have been 0 issues here. We have never missed a rent payment and like I said are now on our 5th year of renting. We were given a letter stating that during an air filter change the maintenance noticed some damage/stained carpet and they will be sending a carpet inspector here as well as doing a management inspection (the first in 4 years) to assess the damages. It also stated that we would be responsible to pay to replace the carpet in the apt (assuming if problems were found, even though it didn't say that). It also threatened eviction if we had to "be warned again of housekeeping problems". It was a very nasty and insulting letter considering we keep the apt very clean at all times and given our perfect history here.

I will also say there are no visible stains at all in our apt, none visible with a UV black light either but we have no issues replacing or cleaning things that are are possibly damaged when we vacate at the end of our lease, but we like it here and that could be some years down the road.

So my questions:

1.) Can we be forced to pay for new carpet while we live here?

I feel like its kind of silly for us to be forced to re-carpet the place at the START of our lease. What if something happens and the carpet gets damaged? I don't want to have to replace carpet now and and the end of our lease.

2.) If this is forced on us what was the point of a Security Deposit as well as a Pet Deposit? (we have paid both)


3.) Can they force eviction on us if we refuse to pay for new carpet now?

If they ask us to replace the carpet during our lease and we decline can they forcefully evict us?



Thanks
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Old 11-22-2011, 04:23 AM
 
Location: Southern California
3,116 posts, read 3,994,217 times
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Two things...

One, are you absolutely sure the letter was meant for you? Is it possible that the maintenance got the wrong apartment? I would wait to do anything, until after they inspect it - because if your carpet is as clean as you say it is, they won't find anything worth complaining about!

And two, are you sure they meant for you to replace the carpet now? While you're still living in the unit? They are definitely within their rights to make you pay for the damages, when you move out - but it would seem rather odd to make you pay for new carpet now, in the middle of a lease, if the carpet is as clean as you say it is?
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Old 11-22-2011, 04:36 AM
 
2 posts, read 9,004 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bouncethelight View Post
Two things...

One, are you absolutely sure the letter was meant for you? Is it possible that the maintenance got the wrong apartment? I would wait to do anything, until after they inspect it - because if your carpet is as clean as you say it is, they won't find anything worth complaining about!

And two, are you sure they meant for you to replace the carpet now? While you're still living in the unit? They are definitely within their rights to make you pay for the damages, when you move out - but it would seem rather odd to make you pay for new carpet now, in the middle of a lease, if the carpet is as clean as you say it is?
The letter has our name on it so yes it was meant for us. The carpet is clean, 3 of the 4 rooms are pet free and the hallway and last room are without blemish visible with the naked eye and with UV lights.

The letter seemed to insinuate that they would seek replacement immediately, I could be wrong about that though as it did not state that directly.

I expect them to find nothing wrong (not sure why this started in the first place) but I feel like they are going to try and extort money from us for no reason, like saying there is damage when there is none. What would I even do to protect myself against that?
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Old 11-22-2011, 06:54 AM
 
Location: St Thomas, US Virgin Islands
22,142 posts, read 26,279,267 times
Reputation: 22734
Don't jump the gun and tie yourself in knots worrying about all the worst case scenarios. Document everything you have to date, get a copy of whatever reports the, "carpet inspector" and the "management inspector" come up with and go from there. I think somebody in the property management office is maybe getting carried away with his/her title and badge! Good luck and keep the forum posted on what happens next.
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Old 11-22-2011, 10:22 AM
 
Location: Brooklyn New York
12,236 posts, read 11,742,373 times
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and yet again, another carpeting story by renters.

I don't understand why LL's keep installing carpets in tenants apartments. They do not last forever and will get dirty, it is just logical. A hung of material that cannot go into a washing machine, that gets walked on all day, every day can never stay clean, what do the LL's expect...the people to float....
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Old 11-22-2011, 10:40 AM
 
5,276 posts, read 5,373,804 times
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Sounds like you have pet urine stains in one room and the stains cannot be seen but possibly can be smelled? Maybe the maintenance person smelled it. This could go through to the pad even if you clean the carpet...as the smell could linger.

If you are steam cleaning each month and using a UV light, it is obvious your pets are going to the bathroom on the carpet. Another possiblility...maybe when the maintenance person was in your unit changing the AC filter, maybe one of the dogs decided to go potty on the carpet. Maybe they saw this and decided to come in there to inspect at a later date.
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Old 11-22-2011, 10:41 AM
 
Location: Boise, ID
5,472 posts, read 10,626,082 times
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The letter also mentions "housekeeping problems". Other than your carpet, if the rest of your house is also clean, which you indicated it is, then I would guess that the inspector possibly mixed up two units. Maybe inspected two the same day and got them mixed up in his head, so sent you a notice that should have gone to the other person. Just because it has your name on it, doesn't mean they didn't make a mistake.

They can't make you replace something that isn't damaged. And I can't imagine they would make you replace something during the time you are still occupying, unless not replacing it would cause damage to something else in the unit, or cause potential injury.

What does your lease say about damage? If you really do have damage, they may be able to make you up your deposit amount, but unless the damage is severe or ongoing, they probably can't evict you over it.

But carpet has to be prorated anyway, so as long as it isn't causing a hazard, even if it were stained, you should be able to make the choice to just live on it ugly, and if you are there for 5+ years on that carpet (you said it was new last year), then the LL would be expected to replace it when you vacate anyway.

Personally, I think you are stressing over nothing, and that it will work itself out when they come visit you. If you want to be proactive, and do something about it now, then I would say this: If you are a good housekeeper and keep the place that clean, I would call the landlord and tell them you feel there must be a mistake, and welcome them to come by unannounced for a surprise inspection any time they want to, to see the condition for themselves.
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Old 11-22-2011, 10:59 AM
 
Location: Boise, ID
5,472 posts, read 10,626,082 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nightcrawler View Post
and yet again, another carpeting story by renters.

I don't understand why LL's keep installing carpets in tenants apartments. They do not last forever and will get dirty, it is just logical. A hung of material that cannot go into a washing machine, that gets walked on all day, every day can never stay clean, what do the LL's expect...the people to float....
They can't last forever, but even with pets, with some basic care, they can last a long time. My parents built a house in 1990. When they moved out in 2002, the carpet still looked brand new. And we had 5 people and a cat. My carpet in my house is 8 years old and still looks brand new, and I have 2 cats. We have one rental property that we are on tenant #6 over a 8 year span, and the carpet never has been replaced and still looks brand new, because they all took care of it. But we have also had tenants destroy brand new carpet in only 3 months.

But the reason many LLs put carpet in is because it is the cheapest to replace. If you assume that tenants are going to destroy whatever kind of floor you put in anyway, why not put in the cheapest type possible?

We had a tenant just move out of a upper end rental unit with hardwood floors, and they are all badly scratched. The entire floor is going to have to be sanded and refinished. Multiply that by doing it every time a tenant moves out, and soon you have no hardwood left and have to replace it from scratch. So you have the cost to refinish each time, followed by the cost to replace the entire floor. Carpet is much cheaper.
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Old 11-22-2011, 11:10 AM
 
Location: Brooklyn New York
12,236 posts, read 11,742,373 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lacerta View Post
They can't last forever, but even with pets, with some basic care, they can last a long time. My parents built a house in 1990. When they moved out in 2002, the carpet still looked brand new. And we had 5 people and a cat. My carpet in my house is 8 years old and still looks brand new, and I have 2 cats. We have one rental property that we are on tenant #6 over a 8 year span, and the carpet never has been replaced and still looks brand new, because they all took care of it. But we have also had tenants destroy brand new carpet in only 3 months.

But the reason many LLs put carpet in is because it is the cheapest to replace. If you assume that tenants are going to destroy whatever kind of floor you put in anyway, why not put in the cheapest type possible?

We had a tenant just move out of a upper end rental unit with hardwood floors, and they are all badly scratched. The entire floor is going to have to be sanded and refinished. Multiply that by doing it every time a tenant moves out, and soon you have no hardwood left and have to replace it from scratch. So you have the cost to refinish each time, followed by the cost to replace the entire floor. Carpet is much cheaper.
YES, that does make sense. I think to save the whole "reasonable wear and tear" thing, there should be stated in the lease that the carpeting is the sole responsibility of the tenant.

A new carpet is layed down, (it would be nice if the tenant could pick the color also), each time there is a new tenant. That way it is brand new per tenant. If the carpet gets ruined, when the tenant moves there will be a new one for the next tenant. Carpet isn't really expensive like the above poster mentioned. Should the tenant live there for 40 years, then it is up to them if they want to clean it, replace it or live with it.
Plus, who want s to live in someone else's carpet any way, steam cleaned or not....
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Old 11-22-2011, 12:37 PM
 
Location: St Thomas, US Virgin Islands
22,142 posts, read 26,279,267 times
Reputation: 22734
Quote:
Originally Posted by nightcrawler View Post
YES, that does make sense. I think to save the whole "reasonable wear and tear" thing, there should be stated in the lease that the carpeting is the sole responsibility of the tenant.

A new carpet is layed down, (it would be nice if the tenant could pick the color also), each time there is a new tenant. That way it is brand new per tenant. If the carpet gets ruined, when the tenant moves there will be a new one for the next tenant. Carpet isn't really expensive like the above poster mentioned. Should the tenant live there for 40 years, then it is up to them if they want to clean it, replace it or live with it.
Plus, who want s to live in someone else's carpet any way, steam cleaned or not....
Hope springs eternal but save yourself worries and concomitant HBP by simply dealing with what you have to deal with right now which is - OH WAIT! NOTHING RIGHT NOW! Want to change the rules and regulations in your state, then register to vote and forge ahead. In the meantime, learn and understand what the laws are concerning landlord tenant obligations in your state. It's not that difficult to be prepared and knowledgeable.
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