If our tenant damaged the countertop, can we deduct the amount from security deposit?

They damaged the countertop. We didn’t find out until they vacated. Now they have requested pictures. Must we provide them?

Asked on July 18, 2019 under Real Estate Law, Connecticut

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

1) Yes, you can deduct from the security deposit for the damage: that is what the deposit is for, after all--it is to provide security against and compenate the landlord for damage to his/her property.
2) You should provide the photos. While not specifically required to do--you only have to provide the estimate or invoice for the repair and a written description of why it is necessary--if they don't believe you and agree and sue you for their deposit back, you'll almost certainly have to provide the photos in court. So if the photos support you position, provide them now, to try and convince them of the appropriateness of what you did and head off litigation before it begins.


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