A security deposit is an amount you pay as the tenant of a new property along with your first month’s rent. Many landlords in Florida require their tenants to pay a security deposit before they are even given the keys to their properties. Nevertheless, they are refundable. A security deposit serves as a cushion for landlords against property damages that stem from the negligence of the tenant. It also helps to cover the cost of hiring a property management company.
Damages caused by the negligence of tenants range from broken door handles to damaged locks, broken toilet seats, smashed bathroom mirrors, and soaking the carpet with pet urine. When this happens, the landlord can deduct the amount needed to cover the damages from the security deposit according to the Florida landlord-tenant law.
If you are a first-time tenant or you are new in Florida, this article will show you other likely reasons your landlord may require a security deposit from you.
To Cover Unpaid Utility Costs
Although some utility bills are the landlord’s responsibility, most of them are yours. In a case where you fail to pay the bills required of you to pay as a tenant before moving out, the landlord has the right to deduct the appropriate amount from your security deposit.
It Covers For Lost Rental Income
In a situation where you abandon your apartment or break the lease agreement early, the lost income incurred by your landlord can be recovered from your security deposit.
Excessive Property Damage
Another important reason why a Florida landlord will require a security deposit from you is to safeguard themselves in the case of severe property damage. This fee can provide a financial cushion for them and help cover a good part of the expenses.
Before moving into a new apartment, carrying out a walk-through inspection alongside your landlord is necessary. This not only allows you to know the exact condition of the property beforehand but also allows the landlord to see damages that need to be fixed.
Excessive Cleaning Costs
Depending on the contract of your lease, your landlord can use part of your security deposit to cover cleaning after your move out of the apartment. In some contracts, some landlords clearly state how the property should be left when a tenant is moving out. If this standard is not met, they have the right to dip into the security deposit to cover the cost of cleaning.
When Can I Get My Security Deposit?
As mentioned above, the security deposit is refundable. Generally, you are expected to be paid your security deposit within 15 days of moving out. In a case where there has been a deduction, your landlord will have to notify you of this 30 days before the end of your lease. This notice should be sent via certified mail with a statement to keep all or parts of the security deposit. It should also come with a well-stated reason for this action. If you don’t find this reason valid or true, you can contest the deduction within 15 days of receiving the notice.
For more information about Florida security deposit law, visit https://myhomespot.com/
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