What to do if my landlord has told me that she will keep money from my security deposit to pay for carpet cleaning when I move out?

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What to do if my landlord has told me that she will keep money from my security deposit to pay for carpet cleaning when I move out?

My lease states that the security deposit will not be used for regular “wear and tear” and does not mention carpet cleaning; the carpeting isn’t stained. Is that legal?

Asked on September 23, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Nebraska

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

It is difficult to give guidance with out seeing the condition with one's own eyes.  But if the carpet is really no worse for the wear then you have to follow the law in Nebraska in sending the landlord a security deposit refund request letter. Include your apartment number, your forwarding address, the amount of the security plus interest if applicable under the law in your state, and your new address for the return with in 14 days. The bad faith retention of all or any portion of a rental deposit by a landlord in violation of sections 76-1483 to 76-1488 shall subject the landlord to liquidated damages in an amount not to exceed one and one-half months' rent and reasonable attorney's fees.  Take lots and lots of pictures. Good luck.


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