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lmvfree

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Posts: 6
Reply with quote  #1 
How do you determine what to charge for cleaning charges from security deposit?

IE: dirty fridge-guess it is molasses spilled all thru it
dirty oven, dirty burners-caked on black under the burner covers on electric stove
carpet stains
tub caked on with soap scum all white and brown
dirty toilet-black under seat
dirt and soap scum on bathroom sink
dryer link on floor and walls where dryer was
floors not cleaned with spill marks from something that require more than mopping (more like hands and knees scrubbing)
those kinds of things....is it a dollar amount per hour or what?  I live in Maine
OHlandlord

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Posts: 3,811
Reply with quote  #2 

I don't have Maine on my list so I'm not sure if you can charge for your own labor there.  Check with a local LL association to see if you can.  If so, charge the same amount per hour for your labor as you would pay someone else to do the job.  If you are not permitted to charge for your own labor, hire someone else to do the job and get a receipt for what you paid them to do it.  Subtract that amount from the deposit.  On the deposit statement, make sure you itemize cleaning charges by listing exactly what needed done (not just "clean kitchen", but in detail "mop sticky kitchen floor, degrease cabinets, clean filthy stove & fridge, wash down walls, etc.).  Make sure you list all jobs done, the number of hours it took, and how much an hour they were charged.  And if someone else did the work, list their name or business.  Make sure you take numerous photos of the aftermath of the tenants' stay in your unit, especially anything that you will charge them for, so you can prove in court that the work was required.

lmvfree

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Posts: 6
Reply with quote  #3 

As far as charging for the labor, I do not own the property, do not file the taxes on the property ONLY manage it.  THe property is not in our names, it belongs to a trust and we are the trustees-the managers and the Trust files the income tax.  So keeping whatever from the security deposit DOES NOT go to me anyways, it stays in the trust or in the rental account.  The accountant has told us that we can charge a fee to manage the property but we don't as the trust is our daughters. 

OHlandlord

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Posts: 3,811
Reply with quote  #4 

Since you don't own the property, you should be able to charge for your labor.  A manager of an apartment building could charge for their (or their maintenance man's) time or labor.

lmvfree

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Posts: 6
Reply with quote  #5 
Has anyone ever used or viewed the forms, one is on the landlord.com site in the forms that can be purchased (but you can view pretty much to get the picture) for the charges related to security deposit and cleaning amounts per item and there is another one here:http://www.thelpa.com/free/charges.pdf



Do these seem reasonable in costs to anyone that has run into having to go clean and patch screw holes and rent cleaners etc?

OHlandlord

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Posts: 3,811
Reply with quote  #6 

I've seen those forms, but the charges don't seem to be appropriate in all categories IMO.  Some charges are too high, others are too low for my area.  And judges in some states would have a problem with just charging a blanket amount for each type of damage.  Some states have a liquidated damages law where you can only charge the amount you pay for repairs.  Your best bet is to charge for the exact amount of any invoice for repair from a contractor, or an hourly charge + supplies for your own labor (if your state allows you to charge for your own labor).  If your state does not, the best course of action is to hire someone (relative, teenager, cleaning lady) to do the work.  Itemize that person's labor and pay the wages, deducting that amount from the deposit.  This way, there can be no dispute over the deductions from the deposit.

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