If you’re a tenant, it’s important to know your rights when it comes to damages at the end of your lease. But what if there are damages? Who is responsible for fixing them?
In most cases, it is the landlord’s responsibility to fix any damages that are noted in the lease agreement. However, there are some exceptions. For example, if the damages were caused by your negligence, you may be held responsible.
If you are unsure, here are seven steps you should take if there are any discrepancies between what the landlord is claiming and what you believe occurred.
1. Review your lease agreement.
The first step is to review your lease agreement. This will help you understand what is included in your lease and what isn’t. It’s important to know what your rights are as a tenant before you start negotiations with your landlord.
We suggest that you take the time to read through your lease agreement carefully so that you are fully aware of your rights and obligations. If you have any questions, it’s best to ask your landlord or property manager for clarification.
2. Take photos or videos of the damage
Once you’ve reviewed your lease agreement, it’s time to take some photos or videos of the damages. This will help you provide evidence to support your case. If you fail to take pictures, it may be difficult to prove that the damage occurred while you were living on the property.
To demonstrate the entire scope of the damage, we suggest that you shoot images or videos from a variety of perspectives. Take close-up photographs so that your landlord can notice all of the little features, as well.
3. Gather any receipts or documentation
If you have any receipts or documentation that prove you paid for the damages, be sure to collect them. This could include receipts for repairs, painting, or other work that you had done to fix the damage.
The reason why this is important is that it will help show that you made an effort to mitigate the damages. If you can prove that you tried to fix the damage, your landlord may be more willing to work with you.
4. Speak with your landlord or property manager
Once you’ve gathered all of the evidence, it’s time to speak with your landlord or property manager. We suggest that you arrange a meeting so that you can discuss the damage and what needs to be done to fix it.
If your landlord is uncooperative or unwilling to listen to your concerns, you may need to escalate the issue. In some cases, it may be necessary to contact a mediator or attorney.
5. Put your request in writing
If you’re having difficulty agreeing with your landlord, it’s time to put your request in writing. This will create a paper trail and help demonstrate that you’ve made a good faith effort to resolve the issue.
Your letter should be polite and professional. Be sure to include all of the important details, such as the date of the damages, a description of the damage, and any evidence you have to support your case.
6. Give your landlord a reasonable time frame
After you’ve sent your letter, it’s important to give your landlord a reasonable time frame to respond. This will show that you’re willing to work with them to find a resolution.
If your landlord doesn’t respond within the time frame you’ve given them, you may need to take further action. This could include contacting a mediator or attorney.
7. Consider taking legal action
If you’ve tried everything else and you’re still not able to agree with your landlord, you may need to consider taking legal action. This is usually a last resort, but it’s important to know your rights.
No one wants to deal with damages at the end of their lease, but it’s important to know what to do if it happens. By following these seven steps, you can ensure that you’re protected and that you get the resolution you deserve.