What to do if my landlord is trying to keep my entire deposit?

UPDATED: Apr 9, 2012

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

What to do if my landlord is trying to keep my entire deposit?

After moving out my landlord sent me a disposition of deposit stating he was keeping all $1700 ($1300 security + $400 pet) I asked for more detail and he told me that for his brother was who he hired to clean the house. He charged me $36 an hour for labor and charged me $50 for a house inspection they did while we were living there. Additionally, they said the pet deposit was non-refundable. Finally, because we weren’t out until 4 pm on the first, they were going to charge us the whole rest of the months rent. Is this legal?

Asked on April 9, 2012 under Real Estate Law, California


Eric Ridley / Law Offices of Eric Ridley

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Most of the answers you need should be included in your lease. Check to see. Typically, your landlor cannot withhold for th eentire month, unless s/he was unable to re-rent the property over that entire period of time. 

With regard to the labor charge and the inspection, see if your lease provides for those. $36/hr for cleaning is not unreasonable, but it's a bit high. I would be more concerned about the rent. IF he put someone into the property at any point during that month, s/he is not entitled to retain rent for the period when someone else was paying it.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption