Tenant damage is a common occurrence that landlords often deal with. Sometimes, this situation usually warrants them to take money from tenants’ security deposits.

However, it’s vital to understand other situations and regulations concerning this. This information will help you conclude what acceptable charges are for tenant damages and different ways to go around them.

As a landlord, you need careful planning, a valid lease, and awareness of the local rules that control how you can use security deposits. This article will look at valuable information on security deposits and ways to decide on reasonable charges for tenant damage.


Ways To Determine Reasonable Charges For Tenant Damages

Charges For Tenant Damages

Every landlord and landowner are having different norms. And on basis of these norms, you have to calculate what should be your tenant’s damages amounts. Read it and let’s see the tenant damage charge list.

1. Inspect The Property Before The Tenants Move In

This is an essential circumstance that must exist before the tenant moves in. Checking the property makes it easy to hold tenants responsible for the harm. You can employ the services of a property manager to inspect the property for tenant damages.

This move-in inspection records the state of the rental home when a tenant moves in and any issues that may already be present.

2. Keep A Comprehensive Record

You must keep a thorough record of the property’s current state to determine what damage the tenant caused. The most incredible tool for this process is a move-in and move-out inspection for tenant damages checklist. Both parties may easily compare how the apartment changed during the lease using these beginning and ending checklists.

During the inspection process, it would be clear whether the tenant had damaged something.

A property assessment is typically finished within 48 hours of the tenant leaving. This is crucial because if tenant damage is found, you have a limited time to deduct it from the deposit and submit supporting proof before the deposit must be refunded.

This is where a checklist comes in handy. It’ll help you conduct a move-out inspection, which aids efficiency and record-keeping.

Related Resource: How To Attract Quality Millennial Tenants

Difference Between Normal Wear, Tear, And Damages

As a landlord, you should recognize that your investment property will experience increased wear and tear. This means they are exempt from renter charges, and you’re responsible for necessary repairs. If you want to know if the tenant is responsible for water damage or not.

To decipher between them and damages, below are some differences you should know:

  1. The tenant damages are results from abuse or neglect, while normal wear and tear is caused by everyday use
  2. Examples of wear and tear include unstable doorknobs, cabinet doors not shutting all the way, and re-caulking of the shower. On the other hand, damage consists of cracked tiles, carpet spots, and big drywall holes.
  3. Unauthorized colors and scuff marks on hardwood and linoleum floors are another instance of normal wear and tear. Tenant damages include flooded bathrooms, broken doors, and chipped or broken countertops.
  4. Sun-faded blinds and curtains are examples of wear and tear. The curtains are either ripped or missing due to damage.

When To Use A Security Deposit

Use A Security Deposit

Security deposits are paid before tenants move in or take possession of a property. These deposits are used to pay the landlord back if a tenant damages defaults on a lease, causes damage to the property, or abandons the rental unit with unpaid rent due. 

They are frequently equal to the monthly rent. Landlords need to recognize the right situations to use a security deposit. Below are a few you should know:

1. Failure To Pay Rent

Most jurisdictions permit landlords to take all or part of the security deposit to reimburse the costs if the tenant vacates the property with tenant damages and the balance of rent owed.

Rent payment is a requirement of the lease; as a result, nonpayment is viewed as a breach of the agreement. Therefore, landlords might be permitted to keep a portion of this security deposit if a renter doesn’t pay their agreed-upon rent requirement.

2. Unpaid Utility Bills or Other Bills

Property owners may keep a portion of the deposit money to pay back utility companies or other overdue rent-related expenses, including monthly parking fees with tenant damages.

3. Lease Defaults

If a tenant breaches the conditions of the lease, you may keep the entire deposit or only a part of it, depending on the terms of the lease. However, before moving forward, you should clarify any relevant local legislation for tenant damages.

4. Extreme Cleaning

A thorough cleaning is customary as part of the regular procedure of turning over a property. However, the landlord may try to keep some of the tenant’s damages and deposit money if the renter leaves behind garbage or personal items or makes the property require costly, thorough cleaning. Again, before trying to retain cleaning fees, owners should check for any applicable municipal or state legislation.

5. Tenant Damage

Neglect or abuse can lead to property damage, which can occasionally be quite expensive. As you already know, bathroom floods, shattered doors and cracked or chipped worktops are just a few instances of possible tenant damages.

Cases like these usually warrant landlords using a security deposit to repair these damaged places.


Setting a reasonable charge for tenant damages can be technical and uncomfortable. But with the right information, it’s achievable. First, thoroughly inspect the property before renting it to new tenants. An inspection checklist also helps you know how much damage has been caused. Finally, remember to check the security deposit laws of your city.

You should also familiarize yourself with the differences between damage and wear and tear. Understand that the rules governing security deposits can differ from state to state.

All these assist you in tailoring your intended charges in accordance with your state’s security deposit laws. Avoiding expensive tenant disputes requires being responsible with security deposits and keeping thorough records.

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Arnab Das is a passionate blogger who loves to write on different niches like technologies, dating, finance, fashion, travel, and much more.

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