You want to feel at ease in your rental home. For many, this involves adding decorative elements that help to individualize a residence. Nevertheless, if you are a renter, your decorating decisions can have a significant impact on the amount of your security deposit that you receive returned.
Usually, the terms of your lease agreement specify what modifications you may make without the landlord’s consent. However, if you’re unsure, you can unintentionally make modifications that cause a reduction in your security deposit.
It is essential to understand what is permitted and what is not. Learn how to avoid losing your security deposit by making intelligent design decisions and avoiding costly repairs.
Causing Damage to the Property
Landlords frequently deduct security deposits because of tenant-caused damage to the interior design. It is essential to observe that the damage must be severe enough to necessitate repairs. For instance, if you mounted heavy artwork or shelves that left large holes in the walls, used adhesives that damaged the paint or wallpaper, or made other changes that caused physical damage to the property, the landlord may deduct the cost of repairs from your security deposit.
The amount of the deduction will be determined by the extent of the damage. To prevent conflicts over security deposit deductions, it is essential to carefully research your lease agreement and comprehend the specifications for decorating choices and property maintenance.
Failure to Restore the Original Condition
Let’s say your lease agreement said that you had to restore the property to its initial state at the end of the lease, but you neglected to do so after making alterations to the decor. In that situation, your landlord may utilize your security deposit to pay for the costs associated with restoring the property to its initial condition.
The ability to paint the interior of a rental home is one of the most frequently asked questions by renters. Given how simple it is to add your own style to a room or your entire house by changing the paint color, it makes sense why this is a popular worry.
However, you must first check your lease agreement or contact your landlord before picking up the brush. According to numerous leases, you are required to return the house in the same state that you found it in, including the wall color.
Violating the Lease Terms
If your lease agreement stipulated certain decor restrictions (such as no painting or nailing of items to the walls) and you violated them without the landlord’s permission, this could be grounds for withholding your security deposit. The provisions of your lease would have specified what was and was not permitted in terms of decoration. Many tenants do not consider the potential wall damage caused by mounting framed artwork, televisions, and other wall-mounted décor items. The security deposit refund might be affected by even a few nail holes in a wall, and the cost of repairs rises as the damage gets worse.
It’s critical to plan your decor with the final result in mind to protect your deposit. You could choose hangers without nails or avoid wall hangings altogether. Atop an accent table or cabinet, large pieces of artwork or televisions will function just as well and won’t cause any damage to the walls.
Excessive Wear and Tear
Wear and tear that occurs during tenancy is commonplace for rental properties. However, if your choice of furnishings causes undue wear and tear, such as when heavy furniture scrapes the floors, or if you fail to keep up with routine maintenance, the landlord may take a portion of your security deposit to pay for necessary repairs or replacements.
To prevent floor damage, it is advisable to enlist assistance when moving heavier furniture and to use protective material, such as a blanket or moving pad, underneath. Consider investing in felt cushioning for the bottom of your furniture if you frequently rearrange it to make rearranging your decor easier and less likely to cause damage.
Your landlord is permitted to use a portion of your security deposit to cover cleaning costs if your decor choices or general living habits leave the property in a state of disrepair or excessive dirtiness beyond normal wear and tear.
It’s important to keep in mind that you’ll eventually move out of a rental property, so when decorating, keep in mind that you’ll need to return the home or apartment to its original state. You are more likely to receive your entire security deposit back the less restoration work is necessary.
Check your lease agreement and, if necessary, your landlord’s reasons for withholding your security deposit. If you believe the deductions are unjustified or do not comply with local laws, you can legally contest them. Providing evidence of the property’s condition when you moved in and out can help you dispute the deductions. In addition, it is advisable to communicate with your landlord in order to comprehend their reasoning and possibly reach a resolution.