What repairs/maintenance is a tenant responsible for after moving out?

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What repairs/maintenance is a tenant responsible for after moving out?

My husband and I occupied a duplex for 7 years. We are being charged $2,000 for total carpet replacement and paint. Upon move-in, the carpet was already slightly worn. Property Manager claims replacement was necessary due to pet odors (we did obtain a puppy at the end of our lease that had accidents in the living room; I cleaned them diligently with a cleaner and occasional steam-cleaner). Our unit went 7 years without repainting and my husband and I were smokers (Lessor was aware of this). Shouldn’t my $800 deposit be more than sufficient after 7 years. wear and tear?

Asked on September 16, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Indiana

Answers:

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

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

It is not easy n this type of forum to asses the situation on what is or is not enough in an apartment.  You have a lot of issues here and some valid points to contest the claim.  First, if only the carpet in the living room was damaged is that the "total" replacement you mean?  Or is the landlord taking the opportunity to replace all?  Is it uniform in the duplex? It does not need to be.  Next, you were probably entitled to a paint job in there now and then.  Especially if you smoked and he knew it.  Smoke can leave a lot of damage to the walls.  What I am getting at is that there could have been mitigation by the landlord here.  Yo may need to wait until the landlord sues you for the money and bring the issues up before the Judge,  And next time do a walk through before you leave and get a sign off on the damages alleged.  Good luck.


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