Security deposit use and abuse leads the list of litigation between landlords and tenants. So how can one avoid dispute and slide out of home safely? First, understand what monies can be deducted from deposits. Basics include unpaid rent, cleaning, and returning the premises to the condition as when first rented. Top deposit busters include: Rent: Prior to taking off, most states require a tenant to give written notice to the landlord. State notice requirements vary from 10 to 30 days, with written notice usually required to prevent misunderstandings about rent owed or date of departure. Some tenants assume that if their lease is up, they can simply leave. Not so fast, unless you want to leave some money behind. Unpaid rent is a common deposit deduction when forgetting to give notice–30 days' worth in some states–and may be kept by the landlord if no written notice was provided before exiting. It doesn't cost a thing to give written notice–and save misunderstandings ...
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