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Old 07-12-2012, 01:04 AM
 
9 posts, read 4,234 times
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Default Trouble dealing with the landlord (Renting in LA)

Hi all, currently I'm renting an apartment in LA with my roommate and we are about to end our lease at the end of July. Last time we talked to the landlord about the deposit issue and he said he might charge almost 90% percent of money for changing the carpet and painting the wall. That is totally ridiculous. The facts actually are:

1. We actually have left some stains on the carpet but they are just minor compared to the area of the carpet. And we told the landlord that we would ask some professional company to deal with that. The landlord then just claimed that whatever we do he will ask HIS company to clean it again. Also the landlord said that there are dark areas on the carpet but actually the carpet was just like that when we moved in (photos can be proofs)

2.On June.29th we sent the landlord the 30-day written notice telling him the termination intention and our new address via certified mail return receipt requested. The landlord refused it and when we asked him about that, he simply said that he didn't see it (nice excuse, however we got the mail unopened back)

3.In the written notice we asked him to make a pre-moveout inspection which he also refused to do. According to CA law, we should have the right. Could that be good evidence to show the landlord is acting wrongly?

4.The landlord said we should not be present when the final inspection is made. Well, that seems improper but it also seems that this is ok in CA state law.

5.The landlord refused to sign anything (receipt, notice or other files except the orginal lease contract). I suspect that he wouldn't give us the receipt of receiving the keys when we return them. Also there's a column stating "Final inspection" in the original lease move-in inspection sheet part which has the content and signature area blank. If he refuses to make the inspection and/or sign on that sheet, will this be advantageous to us?

6. We highly suspect the landlord will hold the deposit wrongly. Is there anything we should do besides taking numerous photos on the day we move out?

We haven't stayed here for a long time and we are not familiar with the state law here. So any help/advice is highly appreciated!
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Old 07-12-2012, 09:54 AM
 
976 posts, read 887,392 times
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If you have not stayed there long and there are stains on the carpet that is not normal wear and tear. Looks like you will have to pay court costs on this one and I bet the LL has more money and a lawyer ready to go when you do.
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Old 07-12-2012, 11:47 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ms_Christina View Post
If you have not stayed there long and there are stains on the carpet that is not normal wear and tear. Looks like you will have to pay court costs on this one and I bet the LL has more money and a lawyer ready to go when you do.
Well, what if I ask some carpet cleaning company to deal with that? Is it okay for LL to clean it again?
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Old 07-12-2012, 11:56 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nezen View Post
Well, what if I ask some carpet cleaning company to deal with that? Is it okay for LL to clean it again?
Yes. You can hire any amateur off craigslist, or rent a really crappy carpet cleaner from your local supermarket and make the argument that you "got it handled professionally".

Personally, I would not accept a tenant hiring their own carpet cleaner guy. If they did, I wouldn't accept it and probably charge the tenant to get it cleaned properly again. My property, my carpet, my terms.

Your best argument here, is how old the carpet is. If the carpet was brand new when you moved in, and you damaged or stained it, you are really out luck, and will end up paying full cost for it. As you should.

If, on the other hand, the carpet was several years old when you moved in, then you are only liable for a fraction of the cost.
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Old 07-12-2012, 12:25 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CarlitosBala View Post
Yes. You can hire any amateur off craigslist, or rent a really crappy carpet cleaner from your local supermarket and make the argument that you "got it handled professionally".

Personally, I would not accept a tenant hiring their own carpet cleaner guy. If they did, I wouldn't accept it and probably charge the tenant to get it cleaned properly again. My property, my carpet, my terms.

Your best argument here, is how old the carpet is. If the carpet was brand new when you moved in, and you damaged or stained it, you are really out luck, and will end up paying full cost for it. As you should.

If, on the other hand, the carpet was several years old when you moved in, then you are only liable for a fraction of the cost.
The carpet was not new but I'm not sure how old it was as the LL only said it was not new.

Umm, your words seem not to be reasonable as the lease didn't specify the company but only claimed that the carpet should be cleaned by a professional company. Yes the LL can clean it using whatever he wants but we clearly should not pay for that if we can leave the carpet clean when we move out.
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Old 07-12-2012, 02:49 PM
 
Location: Back at home in western Washington!
1,234 posts, read 1,389,760 times
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You need to get a receipt from the "Stanley Steamer" guy (or whoever you hire) to take to court (I would make the guess that is where you are headed with this). That way, you can prove that you did have the carpets professionally cleaned. Not sure what benefit that will be to you if there are stains that don't come out though.
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Old 07-12-2012, 03:13 PM
 
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Just to clarify, is this LA as in Louisiana or Los Angeles?
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Old 07-12-2012, 03:26 PM
 
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Originally Posted by PacificFlights View Post
Just to clarify, is this LA as in Louisiana or Los Angeles?
Los Angeles
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Old 07-12-2012, 03:30 PM
 
9 posts, read 4,234 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sabinerose View Post
You need to get a receipt from the "Stanley Steamer" guy (or whoever you hire) to take to court (I would make the guess that is where you are headed with this). That way, you can prove that you did have the carpets professionally cleaned. Not sure what benefit that will be to you if there are stains that don't come out though.
Well what I'm concerned is that will that be helpful to us to win the case since their service also costs around $150 or so for an apartment of 400 sqft. or so.
Otherwise that seems to be double loss of money according to CarlitosBala's post.

Thanks for your advice anyway.
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Old 07-12-2012, 03:50 PM
 
4,919 posts, read 10,116,526 times
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In CA, i belive they allow a LL to charge for cleaning IF and ONLY IF the place is not returned in the same condition as it was accepted minus normal wear and tear. No matter how clean it is, any damagees can cause a dedcution!. So if the carpet was clean when you moved in, you need to return it in the same clean condition. If there are damages, cleaning isnt going to correct that so you are on the hook for the damages to the carpet. But if the carpet is cleaned by a professional and all you have is normal wear and tear but no damages, they can't charge you to reclean the carpet. However, if the lease specifically states that the carpet will be professionally clean and a dediuction of X dollars will be made from the deposit, by signing the lease, you both mutually agreed to that condition. That means the LL can charge the amount in the lease to professionally clean the carpet even if you already had it professionally cleaned. but its mutual which means they can only charge the amount in the lease for that professional cleaning and you are only obligated to return the carpet in undamaged condition but it doe not have to be professionally cleaned because they already agreed to do the cleaning.
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