Thursday, June 7, 2012

Lessons Learned

Ah, the joys of being novice renters...

Always, always, ALWAYS take pictures and do a thorough walk-through with careful documentation when you move in and out of a rental. More than 2 months after turning in our keys to our place in the Little Apple, we’re only just now done dealing with the headache that was our security deposit.

Despite leaving the place in mostly better condition than we found it and multiple walk throughs where we were told, minus some minor damage, things were great, our previous landlord never returned our money (or our calls… or responded to certified mail…) Once he got a call from a lawyer, we got an itemized receipt and check pretty quickly; however the check was for an insultingly low amount, and the itemized list was…. Wel, silly. Let me share some of the highlights…
$150 dollars for cost of dirt, to fill holes left by dog

True story, Erika digs. We did indeed leave some holes behind, but isn’t dirt supposed to be, uh, “dirt cheap”? Some price checking at the home store indicates that according to his claim, he had to purchase 6,000 pounds of dirt for those holes. Folks, that’s THREE TONS! I’m hiring our dog out for excavation!

$140 for hose, sprinkler and watering
Ok, I understand the need to grow some grass in all that new dirt, but since we weren’t provided lawn care supplies when we moved in, I don’t believe we’re responsible for leaving any behind for him upon move out. Also, forgive me if I’m wrong, but wouldn’t the lawn need to be watered no matter what shape we left it in?

$505 for carpet replacement and labor
“Landlord absorbed cost since carpet was not new when tenant moved in” Well sir, obviously the cost was not absorbed, since we got charged…. And the thing is, the carpet sucked when we moved in! They were going to replace it before we got there but only left it because we asked them to (who wants new carpet when you’re potty training a puppy? Not me).

$65 for… Clorox!
Seriously? Dude, wherever you buy your bleach, you’re getting ripped off…

This story does have a happy ending (for us, anyway, I’m sure the landlord would have a different opinion!). Thanks to CPT Fromage’s buddy who happens to be a consumer rights lawyer, another check is on it's way and we're getting back every penny we deserve. Not only that, but he made all of the phone calls, handled all the documents and saved us a lot of hassle. A big shout out to CB for all the help! We know better for next time!

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