Tenants hired a ‘Rent-a-Center’ who damaged the flooring

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Tenants hired a ‘Rent-a-Center’ who damaged the flooring

Tenants rented a washer/dryer from a ‘rental’ company who installed them incorrectly and caused water damage. ‘Rental’ company insurance installed new flooring, but deducted the useful life which I had to pay. Can I charge tenants for the difference? I should not have had to pay for carpets.

Asked on February 13, 2019 under Real Estate Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

You are entiitled to an amount of money equal to the value of what was destroyed and/or the cost to replace, plus any other out-of-pocket costs you incurred. If you received less than that amount, you could sue the installaton company (assuming you did not sign any agreement that the insurance payment was compensation in full for the loss, or you would not sue the installaton company--if you did sign such an agreement, you are bound to its terms) for any unpaid amounts.
You can only sue the installer, since they the ones at fault. You can't sue the tenant, because the tenant did not do the installation; they are not at fault and did not install the machines incorrectly or cause the damage. Since don't hav any legal basis to sue, you also have no basis to otherwise charge them.

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