HOW TO GET THE MOST OF YOUR SECURITY DEPOSIT BACK

January 13, 2016 admin

Do you remember what you put down for your apartment’s security deposit? Do you want that money back when you move out? There are things you can do now, while living in your apartment, that will help you get most of your security deposit back. Some landlords can be heartless by nickel and diming your deposit away. We don’t want that to happen to you! Take a look at these helpful tips to get the most of your deposit back.


Let your property manager know things right away

Having a good relationship with your landlord is crucial. Let them know when something breaks or isn’t working well. This allows for quick repair and no further damage. Failing to report any issues can cost you and your landlord money. If you report something and your landlord doesn’t repair it, document when that conversation happened and take pictures. This bring us to our next point...


Take pictures and document, document, document

When you move in, take pictures like you are the paparazzi. Take as many as you possibly can and write down every possible imperfection you find. This way you can avoid getting any existing damages pinned on you when you move out. Your landlord should give you a document for recording these things. If you run out of room, don’t hesitate to grab more pieces of paper. You have the right to document your heart out!


Know the quirky lease rules

When I moved into my apartment, the manager said I would have to pay a repainting fee if I moved about before two years. What type of rule is that? I have to pay more to repair a place I stayed in less? Make sure you know these weird rules. It never hurts to look at your lease every couple of months to remind yourself.


Take preventative measures

Try to prevent damages from happening. This may involve putting grip liners in your cabinets to avoid damage to the wood, or avoiding rubber-backed rugs that may chemically react on your floor. These preventative measures will help reduce the little knicks you might get charged for.


Get written approval for changes

If you want to paint or modify your place make sure you have written permission from your landlord. Having a signed piece of paper can bail you out of any disagreements.


Handle your pets

Your pets are cute, but they have their own security deposits for a reason. They destroy things. Even if you have a perfect little pooch, they are still scraping your floors with their nails. Animals are a direct threat to the structure of your apartment like doors, carpets, and walls. The best thing you can do is to read your lease and make sure you know the proper pet rules of your building.


Clean like crazy

I recommend cleaning often and deep cleaning your apartment monthly. It is a small space, you can do it! Then your final clean won’t be so painful. Appliances can be very challenging to clean if you haven’t cleaned them in years. When you move out make sure to clean things you wouldn’t ever think of cleaning. Vents, behind the fridge, the inside of the oven, baseboards... all of these need to be spotless if you want your full deposit back.


Repair things before moving out

Repair any minor things that you damaged. If you dinged a cabinet door, you can use some wood putty and paint it. Add WD-40 to anything that squeaks. Buy new oven burner drip pans if yours have seen better days. These repairs will only cost you a couple dollars, but they would be a bigger fee if left to your landlord.


Give your new address

Make sure your landlord knows your new address to send your security deposit to. Make sure you have your landlord’s information too, in case you don’t get your deposit back or you have any questions. You might want to use them as a referral one day.


Know your rights

Some landlords might try to get away with things. I rented a home for a year with a fridge that had a missing weather strip for the freezer. The result was a high electricity bill. I didn’t know my rights! Know your rights by looking up your state’s laws.


Review your returned security deposit

Don’t just take the check and run. Look at the fees your landlord took out of your deposit. You can challenge these fees, but unless you have proof, you might not win.


Let’s recap

Nothing is better than getting your full deposit back. Take good care of your apartment everyday and know your housing rules. This will make you an amazing tenant that deserves their full deposit back.


Have any questions about your Arcade apartment lease?

We would be happy to answer them! Just give us a call at (314) 930-3813.