Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Security Deposit Issue -- My Tenant Violated the Lease by Having a Pet

Collapse
X
  •  
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Security Deposit Issue -- My Tenant Violated the Lease by Having a Pet

    My tenant who recently moved out just complete a year lease under which there was no pet deposit made. In July, the tenant had a dog in the unit that attacked another dog on the condo property (police were called, report filed, no legal action against me).
    The dog was a breed not allowed by condo bylaws, regardless of whether or not a pet deposit was paid. After the incident, I told the tenant the dog had to leave immediately, and it did.

    Two months later, the tenant had two more dogs in the unit (her mothers dogs), periodically, one of which was also a breed not allowed by condo bylaws. Again, I told her no more dogs, as A) there was never a pet deposit paid and B) the kind of dogs she had put me at risk of being fined by the condo association.

    I also sent her a letter warning her that she was in violation of the terms of the lease. After that, apparently there more no more dogs in the unit.

    Her security deposit is $950 and I have to pay $150 to repair a hole in the wall from her TV.

    The lease states: if landlord permits pets by granting permission to tenant in writing, then Tenant agrees to have property treated for ticks and fleas by a professional exterminator upon termination of this lease (regardless of pet deposit) proof to be provided for return of security deposit. tenant agrees to abide by any and all local laws and ordinances applicable to pets and will not allow it to become a nuisance at any time.

    So, the question is: by having a pet, she violated the lease. Is that the same as being in "default"? If so, can I retain any or all of the deposit for the pet debacle? I intend to withhold at least $150 for the hole int he wall.

    Thanks so much!

  • #2
    re: Security Deposit Issue -- My Tenant Violated the Lease by Having a Pet

    I'm not sure if it's escaped your attention, but you provided, in your own lease, a provision for pets, by stating what you put forth here on this forum. By doing so, you gave permission for pets.

    You have no case.

    You have violated the lease by claiming a pet is acceptable, but then putting it upon the tenant to either have a pet or not.

    How can you prove the hole in the wall was a direct result of the pet?

    Comment


    • #3
      re: Security Deposit Issue -- My Tenant Violated the Lease by Having a Pet

      Maybe you misread the part about the hole in the wall. The hole is due to a TV that she hung up. It has nothing to do with the dog situation, I was just including that as an explanation as to what part of the deposit I intend to withhold.

      Also, the part about granting permission in writing is under Rules and Regulations and states "If landlord permits pets by granting permission to Tenant in writing....." (which I didn't).

      Further, even if that statement served as permission in and of itself, the pet DID become a nuisance, thereby violating the "agreement" for pets.

      Comment


      • #4
        re: Security Deposit Issue -- My Tenant Violated the Lease by Having a Pet

        Originally posted by Unregistered View Post
        My tenant who recently moved out just complete a year lease under which there was no pet deposit made. In July, the tenant had a dog in the unit that attacked another dog on the condo property (police were called, report filed, no legal action against me).
        The dog was a breed not allowed by condo bylaws, regardless of whether or not a pet deposit was paid. After the incident, I told the tenant the dog had to leave immediately, and it did.

        Two months later, the tenant had two more dogs in the unit (her mothers dogs), periodically, one of which was also a breed not allowed by condo bylaws. Again, I told her no more dogs, as A) there was never a pet deposit paid and B) the kind of dogs she had put me at risk of being fined by the condo association.

        I also sent her a letter warning her that she was in violation of the terms of the lease. After that, apparently there more no more dogs in the unit.

        Her security deposit is $950 and I have to pay $150 to repair a hole in the wall from her TV.

        The lease states: if landlord permits pets by granting permission to tenant in writing, then Tenant agrees to have property treated for ticks and fleas by a professional exterminator upon termination of this lease (regardless of pet deposit) proof to be provided for return of security deposit. tenant agrees to abide by any and all local laws and ordinances applicable to pets and will not allow it to become a nuisance at any time.

        So, the question is: by having a pet, she violated the lease. is that the same as being in "default"? If so, can I retain any or all of the deposit for the pet debacle? I intend to withhold at least $150 for the hole int he wall.

        Thanks so much!
        The clause in your lease is immaterial to the case at hand. Because of the way it is worded, the tenant would only be liable for flea & tick treatment IF LL permitted pets by granting tenant permission in writing. OP did not grant permission at all, in writing or otherwise, making this a moot point if she is going by what her lease states.

        The way to justify tenant liability in this case is to go by standard LL/Tenant contract law that gives LL the right to charge tenant and use the security deposit funds to repair/restore the rental unit to the same condition in which it was originally rented to the tenant. That would apply whether or not tenant had a pet, whether or not a pet deposit was paid.

        If a flea & tick treatment is necessary to restore the rental unit, then charging to do it would be justified. (Adversely, if it is NOT necessary, then LL cannot justify charging for it just because tenant had an unauthorized pet.)

        The hole in the wall is a no-brainer. If caused by the tenant, then the repairs are fully deductible from the security deposit. But simply violating the lease by having an unauthorized pet does not justify keeping any or all of the deposit to compensate for the "pet debacle". To deduct the expenses from the security deposit for the pet issue, OP must have incurred some kind of financial damages (condo assn fines, for example) that require reimbursement in order to be made whole.

        OP should be sure to keep complete records and documentation of any and all actions taken to restore the unit, including invoices, work orders, receipts, and inspection reports. If the tenant takes issue with any deductions, OP will need them to back up those deductions.
        "If it ain't in writing, it never happened."
        "A lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part."
        "You can never make the same mistake twice, because the second time you make it, it's not a mistake, but a CHOICE."

        Comment


        • #5
          re: Security Deposit Issue -- My Tenant Violated the Lease by Having a Pet

          I just want to add that if you don't wish to allow pets, remove that clause entirely and insert "no pets" into the clause. The way your lease is currently worded is unnecessary if you don't allow pets.

          Comment


          • #6
            re: Security Deposit Issue -- My Tenant Violated the Lease by Having a Pet

            The OP didn't say that he/she didn't allow pets entirely. The post only said the tenant had no registered a pet nor paid a pet deposit. The OP may allow certain pets, but not any breed that is restricted because of condo bylaws. The clause is standard in most lease and says only that pets are permitted IF the LL gives written permission.

            I agree with sandyclaus on this. You cannot make any tenant forfeit a deposit for any reason. You can do a proper itemized accounting of the deposit showing all legitimate deductions. If the carpets now need cleaned to remove pet odors and dander, that is a legal deduction. If the unit needs to be treated for fleas or ticks, that would be a legitimate deduction. Likewise, if walls need washed to remove pet accidents, woodwork needs repaired because of scratching, or the door needs repainted to cover scratches - these would all be lawful deductions. As long as the deduction is necessary to return the unit to its prior condition or to repair damages, you can subtract for this on the itemized deposit statement. Remember to take dated photos of the damages and have repair/cleaning receipts to prove the work was done and required.

            Comment

            Previously entered content was automatically saved. Restore or Discard.
            Auto-Saved
            Smile :) Stick Out Tongue :p Wink ;) Mad :mad: Frown :( Big Grin :D Confused :confused: Embarrassment :o Roll Eyes (Sarcastic) :rolleyes: Cool :cool: EEK! :eek:
            x
            Insert: Thumbnail Small Medium Large Fullsize Remove  
            x

            the color of a blueberry is... (write the answer twice with an "@" between the words)

            widgetinstance 213 (Related Topics) skipped due to lack of content & hide_module_if_empty option.
            Working...
            X