We continue to see more and more disputes between Landlords and Tenants when it comes time to refund the security deposit. I would like to piybt out a few things both parties can do to avoid common problems
If you are a tenant in a property that has been foreclosed upon it is important that you understand your rights. It is also important for tenants and landlords to work together throughout this process. Whoever obtains new ownership will in all likelihood want the tenant to get out right away. However the Tenant has up to 90 days to stay in the property. They must continue to pay rent and follow the terms of their original lease agreement. The California Code of Civil Procedure was amended by SB1149 to provide tenant’s additional rights. If you are a tenant in a property that is going through foreclosure you should contact an attorney to understand your rights. You can also visit www.lawhelpcalifornia.org for additional information.
- Tenants with a lease have a right to stay until yhe end of the lease, but the lease may be terminated on 90 days notice by a purchaser who will occupy the property as their primary residence.
- Tenant with expiring month to month leases are entitled to a 90 day notice to quit before the new owner can start an unlawful detainer.
In today’s challenging economic landscape tenant’s and owners are looking to save every penny they can. We have had several questions come up recently regarding how to handle a tenant’s security deposit. This is as agood as time as any to bring everyone up to speed on how security deposits should be handled and what the rules are regarding security deposits.
All too often we see owners try to keep portions of a tenant’s deposit. This is probably the number one complaint in property management. We try to avert this by making sure all parties are on the same page when the lease is signed. Having a clear and concise lease agreement can avoid headaches later. We also suggest that owners deliver the property broom clean. This means that the owner has thouroughly cleaned the unit from top to bottom. Clean the carpets, windows, baseboards, everything. Take photos to document it and you will be on your way to having a haslle free experience.
California Law allows owners to collect up to two months rent for unfurnished units and three months rent for furnished units. This includes any pet deposit or anything else. We typically encourgae owners to lump everything together and call it a security deposit. Not last month’s rent or a pet deposit. If you call, $500.00 a pet deposit and the tenant moves out and doesn’t pay the rent you may have to return the pet deposit since that is what is was. The pet didn’t damage anything.
Use Of Deposit
Landlords are limited in what they can use the security deposit for.
1) The compensation of a landlord for a tenant’s default in the payment of rent.
(2) The repair of damages to the premises, exclusive of ordinary wear and tear, caused by the tenant or by a guest or licensee of the tenant.
(3) The cleaning of the premises upon termination of the tenancy necessary to return the unit to the same level of cleanliness it was in at the inception of the tenancy. The amendments to this paragraph enacted by the act adding this sentence shall apply only to tenancies for which the tenant’s right to occupy begins after January 1, 2003.
(4) To remedy future defaults by the tenant in any obligation under the rental agreement to restore, replace, or return personal property or appurtenances, exclusive of ordinary wear and tear, if the security deposit is authorized to be applied thereto by the rental agreement.
When it is time to move out a tenant has the right to request that the landlord inspect the property 14 days before they leave. During this pre-move-out inspection the landlord should let the tenant know if they see any obvious deductions. The tenant then has the right to remedy these items before they move-out. Once the tenant has vacated the premises the landlord should inspect the home and thouroghly document any possible deductions. Take pictures and male a list of any repairs that need to be done. The tenant has a right to copies of all invoices of any repairs that will be done.
- Landlords have up to 21 days to return a tenants deposit.
- Most cities do not require landlords to pay interest on a deposit.
- Landlords can’t deduct for Normal Wear and Tear
You can download our landlord tenant handbook or email us for a free copy.
Fannie Mae announced Sunday that it will help renters living in foreclosed properties owned by the company. Fannie Mae stated they would sign new leases with the tenants living in the property’s they have foreclosed on. This is a major step forward that could protect thousands of renters from eviction. The mortgage giant stated they would allow the renters to live in the home while it is up for sale or would provide them with cash to help facilitate the transition to a new property. This policy is set to go in effect by January 9, 2009. With the announcement it is expected that Freddie Mac will soon adopt a similar policy