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2WatchOverU

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Posts: 5
Reply with quote  #1 
Hi everyone,
 I have a few questions to ask, I have a tenant who gave me a move out notice a lil over a month ago. We did a walk through the day after the end of the 30 day notice without the tenant and very little had been done. All the furniture was gone but cleanup was a no no with the exception of vacuuming the carpet and they may have tried to shampooed, but not well. The original stove from the kitchen was sitting in the backyard with the door removed and laying on the ground another stove was in the kitchen. When she was asked about this she said she replaced it with another stove because two of the back burners weren't working. She also ask for more time to clean the house again. She finally gave me the keys to the house today ...(9 days) after the original move out date that she requested. And she was expecting the refund on the security deposit the next day. When I told her that it wasn't going to be possible to do a refund the next day she gets upset. I mean we don't have any idea if the stove they left in the kitchen works or not ..... the power has been turned off, so there's no way to test it.
Anyway .... how long do I have to figure out the total on deductions and return the security deposit in the state of Virginia...? And do I have to send any type of notice  to the tenant before I finish my deductions ? And I'm sure they can be charged for the 9 days late move out pass her requested move out date notice ?
OHlandlord

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Posts: 3,814
Reply with quote  #2 
VA gives you 45 days to itemize damages and return the deposit,  Those days don't start until she turns over keys and delivers possession to you.  You should charge her prorated rent for any time she still had possession of the unit (until she gave you the keys back).  She is unrealistic to expect deposits to be returned with a couple of days.  Just let her know you will itemize all damages and return the deposit to her forwarding address as required by the VA Code 55-248.15;1.

Take photos of the place and the stove sitting outside.  If the stove was an electric one, she merely had to clean the contacts for those 2 burners to get them to work again.  Non-functional electric burners are almost always a case of food and grease on the contacts.  Sometimes these contacts also get slightly bent and have to be put back in place.  But it is rare for the burners to actually go bad.  They are solid.   (And if they do, any used appliance store can sell you new or used functional ones to snap in for a couple dollars.)  There was no reason to replace the stove.  Did she take hers with her?  And left yours sitting out in the elements all this time?  Probably won't work if it's been in the rain and snow.  Pests, insects, and rust will have made it inoperable.  Charge her for a good used one if it doesn't.  She should have just contacted you to have it fixed instead of tossing it out.  You or any used appliance repairman could have fixed the burners in 10 minutes.

Make an itemized statement of all charges from her deposit, mark it a bill if it comes to more than the deposit amoiunt, or return the rest if less, and mail it to her forwarding address within those 45 days.  If no forwarding address, mail it to the rental address.  When it comes back, file it away unopened as proof you sent it.

2WatchOverU

Registered:
Posts: 5
Reply with quote  #3 
Thanks OHLandLord,
 The deal with the stove will never sit well with me so thanks. Yes the stove was an electric and she did leave the other stove, But it really doesn't appear to be in good shape and with the electricity turn off we may not be able to find out if it work before we have to give her the deposit back ! 

There are other questions I have,

(1) As a landlord in the state of Virginia am I able to charge against the deposit for any cleanup or repairs I do myself ? 

(2) If I charge for the time between her move out date and when she actually gave me the keys, should I take what was the amount for monthly rent and divide it by 30 (the avg amount of days in a month) then multiply it by 9 (the number of days past her move out date) ?

(3) Also she seems to have a problem giving me her forwarding address, is it required that she do so ?

OHlandlord

Registered:
Posts: 3,814
Reply with quote  #4 
If necessary, haul it to another unit of the neighbors on a dolly to check it out.  You need to know if she left you a working unit or a junker.  If this one is a much worse one, you could charge her for the difference in the depreciated values.

1.  I haven't found my paper yet on this.  Check your state law or with a local LL group or chapter or REIA to find out if you can charge for your own labor.

2.  Exactly.  To prorate:  Rent / 30 days x the number of days of hold over.

3.  Mention that you need that address as you are required to send her deposit back to that address according to state law.  If she fails to, prepare the itemized statement and mail it to the rental address marked "Forwarding Address Service Requested".  See the upsp site for more info on this, but it will give you their forwarding address if they give it to the post office.  If it isn't forwarded, it will come back to you.  File it away unopened as proof that you mailed it in time.  A few states say you have no liability to refund the deposit if no forwarding is provided.  Check to see if your state is one, although I don't think it is.

haynesm

Registered:
Posts: 64
Reply with quote  #5 

If I remember right in MO we can charge twice the monthly rental fee for holdover periods. Check this out with your state statutes.  Of course you need something in writing that they were going to be moved out by a certain date for this to come into play.  On a m2m I believe it would be automatic. Not sure.

2WatchOverU

Registered:
Posts: 5
Reply with quote  #6 
Thanks guys,
  I have couple more thoughts .... but only one comes to mind at the moment .... "hate it when that happen". Well here goes; would it be against the rules if I changed all upcoming rental agreement to "non refundable security deposits" ......?
OHlandlord

Registered:
Posts: 3,814
Reply with quote  #7 
Don't ever use"non-refundable" and "security deposit" together.  You are in violation of all state laws if you do.  Why are you asking?

If you are asking if you can just make all security deposits non-refundable - no!  That is not allowed.  You are asking them to waive their right to a refund of a deposit (which is by definition refundable).  All state laws say you cannot make them waive their rights.  You can't just take these deposit and plan to keep them, even when there is no damages to a unit.  Illegal.

If you are asking if you can charge a non-refundable fee for something (like a pet) that depends on your state law.  But call it a non-refundable "fee" and not a deposit!
2WatchOverU

Registered:
Posts: 5
Reply with quote  #8 
Thanks OH,

  This is kinda new to me and I'm just trying to feel my way around the clutter. It has also come to my attention that the full "security deposit" was never paid by the tenant to the tune of ($250.00) short. My mom "the owner" went over the receipts and confirmed it with the tenant to be true .... "the tenant acknowledge this to be true", and the tenant claim it to be an oversight on her part as well. Now I have to figure out how to regain or compensate for that amount or make a way for it in the deduction process .........."any ideas will be greatly appreciated ?  Thanks for the help and I hope I'm not over working you ......
OHlandlord

Registered:
Posts: 3,814
Reply with quote  #9 
That's simple.  Forget about the money they didn't pay and just credit them for the deposits they did pay.  You make the deposit itemization in 2 parts. On the top you mark "CREDITS".  Then list dates and amounts of the actual deposits with a total of how much they paid in deposits in all.  Then underneath you mark "DEBT" and list all items you ill be charging them for.  Total those.  Then you subtract.  If they still have a balance you enclose a check for that amount.  If they have a debt owed, you mark it as a bill owed within 30 days payable to the owner at XXX address.
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