What should I do regarding charges after moved out of an apartment?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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What should I do regarding charges after moved out of an apartment?

I just moved out from an apartment. Due to some scratches on the kitchen appliances, they charged me the full price of all of them. All those appliances are working perfectly and look brand new except for the scratches.

Asked on May 31, 2017 under Real Estate Law, Pennsylvania


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

If the scratches are more than normal wear and tear and are prominent enough that, despite the appliances still working, they reduce the market value of the unit (e.g. someone would not be wiling to pay as much in rent for a unit with appliances looking this scratched up), the landlord could properly charge you for replacing them: the landlord is not required to accept a diminution of the value of its apartment, if the scratches are beyond normal wear and tear.
On the other hand, if the scratches were from normal daily use (the accululation of wear any appliance has over time) or, as you feel, do not detract from value, then the landlord should not have charged you. If you feel that the landlord charged you when he should not have, you could sue him (e.g. in small claims court, as your own attorney or "pro se") for the money; if you can show that he should not have charged you, you can get a judgment for some or all the money.

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