When can the landlord use the security deposit?

November 3, 2020

What can landlords deduct from a security deposit?

Renting an apartment is a process that is regulated by laws and legal rights. Both tenants and landlords need to know them. However, there are laws that still restrict landlords from collecting funds from tenants. Thus, tenants will pay only what is allowed by law.

In addition to paying for the apartment itself, there may be other costs - they are all determined individually between the parties. Often, future tenants, when moving into their new home, are faced not only with the standard monthly apartment payment and agent commission, but also with security deposit.

What fees can landlords charge?

According to the provisions of the current legislation, permitted "fees" are rent, deposits for a period of not more than 5 week for one object, which is subsequently returned to the tenant, deposits for violation of the lease agreement or the inclusion of additional conditions, taxes, etc.

The landlord has the right to demand additional contributions from the tenant or tenant if the tenants intend to have pets, are going to use the premises for commercial purposes, in case of an increase in the cost of utilities - payments for water, electricity, etc., if the landlord himself pays. This also applies to payment for other services - telephone line, television, Internet, etc.

If the tenant does not comply with the requirements of the current lease agreement, the landlord is also entitled to demand payment of:

  • Upon termination of the lease before the specified period.
  • In case of late payment of rent. You can charge additional payment no earlier than two weeks after non-payment of rent. The interest that can be withdrawn must not be more than 3% of the principal amount.
  • If the keys are lost.
  • When causing material damage at the facility, etc. The Lessor must prove the damage and prove all the facts documented.

What landlord can't charge a tenant for

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If the rent is paid in several payments, then it is forbidden to charge interest from the tenant. Payment by the tenant is possible only with his documented desire. You can not charge for the gardener's service, unless it was agreed in the rental agreement. More details about all restrictions can be found in the text of the law itself in official sources.

Is it possible to set a deposit for real estate and how to determine its amount?

Yes, the landlord or agent can ask for a deposit. The deposit serves as insurance for him to fulfill all the conditions of the contract on the part of the tenant. But the amount of bail should be limited. 

According to the law, it will depend on the amount of rent for the year. If the total amount exceeds 50 thousand, then the deposit should not exceed the cost of five weeks of rent. If it's more than 50 thousand, then the deposit will be the amount for six weeks of rent.

The cost of rent for the year can be based on several formulas - multiply the cost of rent for one month by 12 or multiply the cost of rent for one week by 52.

What threatens the landlord in case of non-return of the deposit?

Since the requirements are dictated by law, their violation is an offense. This entails at least a fine. Its size is up to 30 thousand. By a court decision, the punishment for non-compliance with the law may be the opening of a criminal case, imprisonment, work for the good of society. If the landlord has already had a fine over the past 5 years, and he receives another one, a criminal case will certainly be opened against him with a negative outcome.

The deposit should be kept in the tenancy deposit scheme during the entire rental period. After completing all checking out inventory procedures, the deposit will be returned to the tenant.

What to do?

In order not to find yourself in an unpleasant situation, you need to know your rights and obligations well and carefully monitor changes in legislation. 

If you want to save your time and avoid controversial moments , you can use the services of our professional inventory company

You can safely trust our staff - they will help you settle any issues related to your property, as well as advise you on issues of interest to you. All data about the landlord remains confidential and is protected by our company's privacy policy regarding clients.

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Frequently asked questions

How can you tell if the payment your landlord is asking for is legal?
All situations in which the landlord may demand payment are prescribed by law. You can read about all cases of legal pledges on our website above.
How to protect yourself and not lose the security deposit?
When renting an apartment with equipment or furniture, information about this should be indicated in the contract, and to receive the property, you need to fill out an acceptance certificate with the maximum number of details.Lawyers also advise having a receipt from the owner on receipt of monthly payments. The payment schedule can be drawn up as an appendix to the lease agreement in order to confirm the transfer of money in the event of a conflict.
If the landlord does not return the security deposit?
If tenants find themselves in a situation where they are accused of damaging the apartment or furniture, although they did not do this, the act of acceptance and transfer must record disagreement with the requirements presented, as well as indicate information about the owner’s failure to fulfill the obligation to return the deposit. Tenants can contact authorities to resolve the issue - depending on the accessibility of a particular service.
Should tenants contact court if the landlord does not return the security deposit?
The issue of recovery of the deposit is regulated in court by the claim of the tenant after a preliminary claim against the owner. The tenant must prove that the payment was withheld illegally. In accordance with the law, if the tenant did not damage the property of the owner, made payments in accordance with the schedule within the period stipulated by the contract, the amount of the security deposit is subject to return.
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