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Old 04-07-2011, 11:51 PM
 
3 posts, read 17,903 times
Reputation: 11

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So when my husband and I moved into a new place. When we gave notice we went through the proper route and sent a written 30 daybnotice via certified mail. We got a return receipt that our landlord received our notice. All was in order for our move out.*

Now this gets a bit confusing, but a little history on the apartment. When we moved in a friend owned the building, so we moved in without a deposit, then the building was sold. In the 10 years we lived there the new owner never asked for a deposit to give a deposit. So when we moved out we left the apt clean (vacuumed, cleaned the bathroom & kitchen, etc.) although we didn't scrub the place. The carpet had a little damage too and will need replacement. We moved out on the 31st and left the keys behind and thought we were done. Well on the 4th our landlord texts us (super professional) and says he was "out of town", wants to collect the keys and wants to do a walk through of the apartment to return our deposit if all is in order. We went and did a drive by of our apartment and the blinds were open. Clearly someone had been there. I think it was a trick, so we ignored him.

Then yesterday he called my husband and left a voicemail asking where we are in the process of moving out. WTF?! We moved out on the 31st. What should we do to make sure we are not screwed. *

My questions:

1) are we responsible for the 10 yr old dirty nasty carpet even though we don't have a deposit?
2) are we on the hook for these additional days even though we clearly left on time with the keys and all?*

I'm freaking out!!! Thanks for your help!
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Old 04-08-2011, 07:19 AM
 
11,414 posts, read 10,859,412 times
Reputation: 17419
I agree with you...something is very confusing in your communication with this guy.

Instead of texts/voice mails....you need to meet with him in person to clarify everything. And when you meet with him, take a copy of the 'move out' notice and the 'return receipt' to confirm your move-out date.

Not sure why he would consider giving back your deposit since you never paid one in the first place.

Did you ever have a written lease? Or has everything been verbal?

I wouldn't think you'd be responsible for 'general wear' of the carpet, and especially since you've lived there for ten years; however, I'm not clear on what you stated as a 'little damage'.

Again, best for you and your husband to make arrangements to meet up with him at the apartment to clear up everything.
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Old 04-08-2011, 07:29 AM
 
Location: NJ
17,579 posts, read 43,302,640 times
Reputation: 16210
When you say you "left the keys behind" what exactly does that mean? Who did you leave the keys with?
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Old 04-08-2011, 11:55 AM
 
Location: Boise, ID
8,047 posts, read 26,576,167 times
Reputation: 9406
If you lived there for 10 years, you should have no responsibility for the cost of the carpet, since 5-7 years is usually considered standard life of carpet, and it has to be prorated for expected remaining life.

You might be responsible for additional cleaning, depending on the condition you left it in (what does "we didn't scrub the place" mean?). We expect our tenants to basically leave the property in move-in condition. We clean 2-3 hours at no expense to them, but anything over that is a tenant expense.

Keys should have been returned to the owner. There has to be an actual relinquishment of possession. In most cases, leaving the keys at the house is not sufficient, unless accompanied by a conversation with the owner that you are out, and are leaving the keys there.

At this point, you still have not relinquished possession, and haven't returned the owner's attempt to contact you, so yes, he may be able to hold you responsible for additional days.

Finally, not having a deposit does NOT mean you are not responsible for damage you do. It just means you pay it at move out instead of at move in.

*Edit* I should say that your landlord may not be interested in collecting extra days from you. The "where are you at in the move out process" call may just be because you ignored his first attempt at contact.
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Old 04-10-2011, 10:43 AM
 
26,987 posts, read 43,286,003 times
Reputation: 15273
Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanmommy View Post
So when my husband and I moved into a new place. When we gave notice we went through the proper route and sent a written 30 daybnotice via certified mail. We got a return receipt that our landlord received our notice. All was in order for our move out.*

Now this gets a bit confusing, but a little history on the apartment. When we moved in a friend owned the building, so we moved in without a deposit, then the building was sold. In the 10 years we lived there the new owner never asked for a deposit to give a deposit. So when we moved out we left the apt clean (vacuumed, cleaned the bathroom & kitchen, etc.) although we didn't scrub the place. The carpet had a little damage too and will need replacement. We moved out on the 31st and left the keys behind and thought we were done. Well on the 4th our landlord texts us (super professional) and says he was "out of town", wants to collect the keys and wants to do a walk through of the apartment to return our deposit if all is in order. We went and did a drive by of our apartment and the blinds were open. Clearly someone had been there. I think it was a trick, so we ignored him.

Then yesterday he called my husband and left a voicemail asking where we are in the process of moving out. WTF?! We moved out on the 31st. What should we do to make sure we are not screwed. *

My questions:

1) are we responsible for the 10 yr old dirty nasty carpet even though we don't have a deposit?
2) are we on the hook for these additional days even though we clearly left on time with the keys and all?*

I'm freaking out!!! Thanks for your help!
Maybe he wants to return A security deposit and has no clue you never paid one
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Old 04-10-2011, 03:42 PM
 
Location: California
3 posts, read 17,774 times
Reputation: 10
The 'rules' all depend on where you live. I think it's important to know exactly how your state defines ending a tenancy. In some places, your tenancy does not end until you surrender your keys- which means handing them to the landlord, not just leaving them on the counter. Most landlords understand 'normal wear and tear excepted'. Obviously, the carpet wasn't new. There should be a walk through because you don't want to be charged for damage you didn't create. Your landlord is trying to go by the book. He has a specific amount of time in which to send an itemized accounting to you of what if anything needs to be repaired after you left. It probably would be best if you contact him and straighten things out.
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Old 04-10-2011, 07:29 PM
 
2,688 posts, read 6,951,941 times
Reputation: 4173
Lightbulb Well...keep it simple...

Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanmommy View Post
So when my husband and I moved into a new place. When we gave notice we went through the proper route and sent a written 30 daybnotice via certified mail. We got a return receipt that our landlord received our notice. All was in order for our move out.*

Now this gets a bit confusing, but a little history on the apartment. When we moved in a friend owned the building, so we moved in without a deposit, then the building was sold. In the 10 years we lived there the new owner never asked for a deposit to give a deposit. So when we moved out we left the apt clean (vacuumed, cleaned the bathroom & kitchen, etc.) although we didn't scrub the place. The carpet had a little damage too and will need replacement. We moved out on the 31st and left the keys behind and thought we were done. Well on the 4th our landlord texts us (super professional) and says he was "out of town", wants to collect the keys and wants to do a walk through of the apartment to return our deposit if all is in order. We went and did a drive by of our apartment and the blinds were open. Clearly someone had been there. I think it was a trick, so we ignored him.

Then yesterday he called my husband and left a voicemail asking where we are in the process of moving out. WTF?! We moved out on the 31st. What should we do to make sure we are not screwed. *

My questions:

1) are we responsible for the 10 yr old dirty nasty carpet even though we don't have a deposit?
2) are we on the hook for these additional days even though we clearly left on time with the keys and all?*

I'm freaking out!!! Thanks for your help!
Call, text or email the LL and advise you were out on appropriate day and the keys had been left on the counter, that you had paid no deposit upon move-in...10 years earlier and any damage should be considered normal wear and tear after that length of time (if in fact it is 'normal' wear and tear...no holes/broken windows etc). That otta do it.
Koale
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Old 04-10-2011, 07:57 PM
 
4,805 posts, read 21,787,332 times
Reputation: 5005
The answers to your questions:

1)Residential carpet is usually recognized as having a 10-year lifespan, so at this point yours is really at the very end of it's valuable life. However that does not mean your obligation is waived. You still must return it in the condition in which you received it, less wear and tear. Wear and tear would consider flattened or crushed pile, perhaps threadbare density. Stains, however, would be your responsibility to clean.

2)This one gets fuzzy. A walk-thru and turning over of keys is part of the standard move-out process. If you didn't inquire about this with your landlord at the time you gave notice, then you could be responsible for the extra days. Leaving the keys on the counter generally is not sufficient.

I speculate that the reason the LL called is that he came back into town, went over to your unit, saw that it wasn't cleaned to his satisfaction (opening the blinds in the process) and is calling to find out if you intend to come back to finish cleaning or not). I'm not sure what kind of 'trick' you think the LL is trying to play, but avoiding his calls is only going to cause more problems for you. In most places the LL has a fixed number of days to complete the walk-thru and provide an itemized list of damages they intend to charge you for. If you refuse to accompany him, you basically forfeit your right to disagree with this list.

Note also, a landlord chooses to require a deposit as a bit of insurance in case you damage the unit, so they don't have to fight or go through hassle to be reimbursed for repairs. If a LL chooses to waive a deposit, they take on the risk that they may have to pursue you to get that reimbursement. But it does NOT mean that they waive the right to charge you for repairs, or that your responsibility is less. I just want to point this out because in your post you seem to think the lack of deposit somehow changes your obligations.
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