Saturday, May 4, 2013

5 Tips to Protect Your Security Deposit!

5 Tips to Keep your Security Deposit Protected!
A Property Manager gives their best tips on how to get back your security deposit.

If you are planning on moving out of your rental home, follow these 5 easy tips to get the most refund from your security deposit check.

1. Carefully read your lease agreement when you move in and 90 days prior to your lease expiration.
This will help you abide by all lease terms, give proper move out notice, and ensure you receive your security deposit. Know what your expectations are and know what the landlords expectations are.  Seriously, just read it all!

2.  Florida law requires that notices to and from a landlord to be in writing.
Always put things in writing and keep copies of all correspondence. Prior to moving in, identify the items in writing that you need be fixed. Put this in writing and make it as part of your lease agreement.

FL law also requires that your landlord provide in writing to you information about your security deposit.  Make sure you receive this and refer to it throughout your tenancy.

FL statutes and your lease agreement may advise you to mail your 30 day notice to vacate via certified mail at the post office.  Make sure to abide by all applicable rules, laws, and lease agreements.  (Side note: Each state's laws vary.)
Take photos of any damages or wear throughout the home! 

3.  Upon move in, fully inspect & document the interior and exterior of your home.
Do a thorough walk through of the home:  flush all toilets, run all faucets, check inside closets and sheds, close and open all windows, etc.  Fully document the property condition and return your move in inspection to the landlord as soon as possible with a date stamp, time, and signature accepted by landlord. Take plenty of photos, videos, and clearly document the property condition upon move in (and again upon turning over the keys when you move out!)

Document any carpet stains, tears, etc. 
4.  During the tenancy, make sure that you document any damages or new discrepancies throughout and around your home or apartment.
Report any necessary items to landlord immediately to safeguard the property and protect your deposit. Take photos and keep a log.  Return a copy to landlord at move out along with your move in inspection documentation.

5.  Hire a cleaning company to do your move out. And if your lease requires, hire a professional carpet cleaning company.
Let's face it:  Moving is hard! You have to organize, prioritize, pack, schedule, clean, pack some more, work, clean, etc. I'm tired just thinking about moving again.

You have to realize how much work is involved and how little time there is to complete the large list of chores involved in moving your home and family.  You have months, sometimes years of dust, dirt, and memories built up in this house. Expect to spend $75-$400 for a good deep cleaning, apartment or house cleaning. It takes hours to scrub baseboards, walls, windows, move appliances and clean under them, scrub mildew from showers and grout, etc.

A Good carpet cleaner will address issues like the darkening
around the corners and pet odors!
After months and years of traffic and dirt, your carpets need to be professionally cleaned. If your lease requires a professional carpet cleaning company, you must have this service done and provide a receipt in order to avoid charges from your deposit. If you have pets, you may be required to use a pet enzyme to treat odors when cleaning the carpets. The cost for professional carpet cleaning ranges from $50-$300 with an average cost of about $150 per home.

You will be a lot happier spending that money on a professional cleaning company and concentrating your efforts on unpacking and organizing your new home!

If you are looking for a good carpet cleaner in the Pensacola area, call our friends at Abreeze Specialties (850) 261-8866!

For more information regarding security deposits, read our blog here on Florida Landlord & Tenant laws regarding security deposits. If you have a question for us, contact us below.

If you are in need of a Pensacola Property Manager, visit our website for more information.

Thanks and have a great day,
Realty Masters of FL~ #1 in Pensacola Property Management
4400 Bayou Blvd. #58B, Pensacola, FL 32503
Call us at (850) 473-3983
Over 45 Pensacola Rental Homes at
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