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I was in a contract with a Section 8 tenant.  If anyone knows of the process of renting to someone on section 8 it is a bit lengthy. Scenario; she urged me to give her a lease agreement, I did, and when she signed the lease agreement she gave me part of the deposit, which she signed and agreed to.  We did not have the contract from HUD, yet.  The day of my home inspection she backs out, am I legally entitled to keep all or part of her deposit? She backed out one week prior to her move in date.

In California unless otherwise specified in your lease, you  would be entitled to keep the deposit unless you re-rent for that same month. Most states WILL NOT permit a landlord to collect double rent.
Within 30 days after tenants move out, the landlord must return the security deposit.
If the tenant who is currently in the apt caused the damage, he/she is responsible however, use of the deposit monies usually occur after the tenant has moved out. I'm not sure why a tenant who is remaining in the home would be willing to forfeit their deposit before moving out. I'm also confused why you would accept that not knowing what further damage will be caused by the time they actually move out. If you use that 995.00 for the current damages, how will any future damages be covered?
First take lots of photos, you will need to prove that this is beyond the normal wear and tear. Then keep the security to and send a deduction notice to the tenant so they know why you are keeping the security. Next you will need to send a demand for payment for owed money for damages, show photos and repair receipts. If they do not pay you will need to take them to small claims court for the rest of the money.
Gloria, Please make sure that only one browser window is open for this website, if there are multiple widows open it may not save correctly. Once you have made the changes and updates be sure to click Save & View Lease or finish and view Lease. This will build an updated version of the lease with the new information that you enter. If you need further help please contact our Live Support at the Live Chat Option at the top right of your ezLandlordForms Page. We hope this helps and look forward to helping you get everything that you need.
It is not legal to make the security deposit non refundable it is used to protect your property from damages and the remaining balance is returned. I would just make them pay one months rent for holding the property. or use a holding deposit that is non refundable. Check your area's laws regarding Holding Deposits. It is usually used with vacation homes but can work with situations like this.
I agree.. a holding deposit that is non-refundable is the way to go.
Do you have a signed lease?
You can always keep the deposit. But if she's current on rent and hasn't damaged anything, she can always take you to court to try to get it back.
Yes she owned me..thank u for answer im new n this business
Matthew M.    Thanks for the answer to Nancy C.   Would you be able to answer, why you as a Landlord are required to give a 30 day notice, but the tenant can skip it (per your answer) and still drag the Landlord to the court.  Anyone can drag the other to the court.  BUT, does the Tenant have reasonable cause to do so under Nancy's situation.   While Nancy not getting the 30 Day notice and left holding the bag (have the rental home,  not rented) as a surprise, would it not be reasonable for Nancy to have cause of action against the Tenant for his actions?
Sorry for the late reply. "Reasonable cause" is a very open-ended issue. What's reasonable to one party can be the opposite to another. In this case, there was more to the initial posting - tenant owed back rent as well as vacating without 30 day notice. So it would appear that Nancy would now end up shorted (owed back rent PLUS deposit). Therefore, assuming that the tenant still hasn't contacted Nancy (and why would she when she now owes Nancy more than just the deposit) it would be actually Nancy's decision should we wish to pursue the issue.
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