get deposit back

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

get deposit back

I gave a landlord a deposit, with an application, as proof that I was interested in an apartment in Brooklyn. Now I have decided not to move.
I never signed a lease. Can I get that deposit back?

Asked on January 22, 2018 under Real Estate Law, New York


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Even if you did not sign a written lease, there was still an agreement between you and the landlord that you would rent from him--at that time (pre-written lease signing) an oral agreement. It was formed when you gave them the security deposit for a unit. If they reject you, you will get the money back and can sue them if you don't: they are not allowed to keep your money while denying you housing. But if they accept you, as stated, there will be an oral agreement for you to lease (until and unless they then replace that with a written lease). Under such an oral agreement, you would be a month-to-month tenant, which means you have to provide a month's notice terminating your tenancy; that in turn means you always owe at least one month's rent. If they accept you, they can take one month's rent out of your deposit, unless you otherwise paid it, then return the balance (if any) to you.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption