Monday, February 25, 2008

speaking of f'ing people

we got royally fucked by our landlord in regards to our initial deposit.

our deposit was close to 1500 dollars and he sent us 499!!!


we lived there for 2 and a half years. he is trying to charge us for prepping the place to paint it, repainting it, carpet cleaning (he said we would be the last tenants on the carpet), a part in the stove plus labor to fix it (it broke while we were living there- he said he wouldn't fix it, so we didn't either), additional cleaning (which he had already called me prior to moving out and said that the place looked perfect), and whatever else he made up.

i am now on a mission. this is complete bullshit. it would be one thing if i didn't clean the place at all, or totally did some half ass job, but i didn't. i fucking busted my ass cleaning that piece of shit place. i cleaned for 6 solid hours one day and then i went there everynight after work for a week and a half. so, if anyone has any helpful links that i can include in the package i am putting together for him in rebuttal to every single thing he is charging us for, i'd appreciate it. and thanks!

mission my ex landlord sucks donkey balls and is a complete prick is on!!!

17 comments:

Theresa said...

Using the terms "you represented that.....(i.e., that we would be the last tenants to use the carpet, which can only be interpreted to mean that you were going to replace it and therefore I would not be responsible for having it cleaned.)...and I relied on that representation.

You can email me if you need help, however, I'm not familiar with CA Landlord/Tenant law.

norcalgirl28 said...

Three words....Small Claims Court. Nine out of ten times they cave and send you the check. I am amazed that he withheld that much after you lived there that long. "normal wear and tear" throw those words in too. Painting and carpeting are his choices, not your fault.

Dana J. Tuszke said...

That is such bullshit, Jen! I think you should kick his balls in, but that's just me. Did you take photos of the place after you cleaned it? I would send those to him and quote his words that he said the place looked perfect. I think the guy just thinks you're not smart enough to counter back. And we all know that's not true. I say go get him!

Jill said...

Small Claims Court if he will not deal with you on it. Most states you cannot charge for normal wear and tear UNLESS it is in the fine print somewhere on the rental agreement. Sometimes they figure your not going to fight it but if you do as some one said, they will cave in.

jennster said...

theresa. i emailed you. lucky you. lol

norcal- this written response is step 1. if we don't get what we want, small claims is the next step for the maximum we can get him for.

dana- i think he is ball-less. sad, but true.

jill. word.

Linlee said...

Bastard!

MelissaLBC said...

This might help (I had the same issue with my old landlord): According to California State Law, Civil Code Section 1950.5 (g)(2)(4), a landlord is required to provide you with copies of the receipts or invoices for any services over $125 that he deducts from your deposit. So if he has no receipts, he can't charge you! And Civil Code Section 1950.5 (b)(3) states that a security deposit cannot be used for cleaning a rental unit that is as clean as it was when you moved in. No proof that it wasn't clean and he can't charge you (its even better if you have pictures)! As for the paint, if the unit was not freshly painted prior to your occupancy according to Civil Code Section 1950.5 (e), you are not liable for damages that may have been caused by previous tenants or by normal wear and tear. You can find the codes online, I think it was under tenants rights on the state of CA webstie.
The kicker - at the end of my letter I said "Copies of the California Civil Codes are included for your review and we are open to any discussion you wish to have regarding this refund request or the items we have outlined above. If we do not hear back from you by December 20, 2006, we will proceed with taking action through the County of Los Angeles Small Claims Court."
Good luck, I got my whole deposit back without going to court. Oh, and send your letter by certified mail!

MelissaLBC said...

I also just found this (it's not law, but a recommended guideline):
"The California Landlord’s Law Book, Vol. I, pages 15-20 states that the amount deducted from the tenant’s security deposit for repainting is based on the length of the tenant’s stay in the unit. If the tenant lived in the rental unit for two years or more, the tenant should not be charged for any repainting costs."

jennster said...

melissa- i have done just that. i have a 5 page letter written and ready to go! i included the california civil codes that i referenced at the end of the letter, with website addresses and the end of the letter informs me that we will be going to court to pursue the full extent, with landlord bad faith penalties on top of that, if he does not comply. :)

MelissaLBC said...

Good for you!

Alison said...

What a bastard!

Jenna said...

I think someone already mentioned it, but smalls claims court, baby. There is this little known law that landlords don't seem to follow called "normal wear and tear" for those that have occupied a space for more than two years. You are entitled. That fee should only be 50 bucks. Husband and I went through this a while back, but they can't screw you like that.

margalit said...

Perhaps your landlord is unfamiliar with the terms "normal wear and tear" which you're entitled to as a tenant. Which means if you haven't cause actual damage, like a hole in the wall, he CANNOT withold your money legally. Since he was, small claims court is the way to go. Hopefully you have before and after photos.

In my state, landlords are required to:

Put your security deposit into an interest bearing account, notify you as to where the account is located, and pay you the interest yearly unless you agree to let it acrue (which is to your advantage).

Return your security deposit IN FULL within 30 days, deducting only costs for damage, not normal wear and tear.

If your landlord does NOT return your security deposit within 30 days, you can sue in small claims court for treble damages. Yup, three times the amount of your deposit. This keeps landlords a bit more honest about security deposits.

Check with your local tenants union, talk to any attorneys you know, then sue the bastard.

Don Mills Diva said...

OMG - I would be furious! Please keep us updated on the success of your mission.

Anonymous said...

How long did it take him to give you your deposit back? (the one you have recieved)

jennster said...

anon- it took him 22 days.

he claims he didn't have our fwd address, but i left it for him on a piece of paper because he had requested i do so.

Heidi said...

OMG you will totally prevail. In California the tenants rights are pretty hard core and if you look, I bet you'll find a renter's board in your area that offers FREE legal help with this kind of thing.

My hubby and I went through hell with our last landlords - eviction notices after notice given to them and all - but we got every cent back.