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Why might you need to keep your tenant's security deposit?

Many Queens landlords require their tenants to place a security deposit on their apartment before allowing them to move in. Property owners often have their renters pay a security deposit in order to cover their costs if a tenant doesn't comply with their lease. If they don't, then a landlord may not have to return a tenant's security deposit. Let's look at some examples.

Your rental agreement should detail what constitutes a timely rent payment. If your tenant stops paying on time, then they may be in breach of their contract. You, as the landlord, may be able to keep their deposit and apply it to their outstanding rent.

Most tenants have to do a walkthrough of a unit and sign off on the condition before being allowed to rent it. If your tenant leaves your property in a different condition than you handled it over to them, then you may be able to withhold their security deposit to use for cleaning or repair expenses.

Landlords tend to have their tenants sign leases so that they can better anticipate when to advertise and how to budget their money. You, as a landlord, may choose to withhold a tenant's security deposit simply for moving earlier than you expected.

Another reason why you may want to hold on to your tenant's security deposit is if they have any lingering fees that they've failed to pay. Landlords often do this if there are metered utility costs that a tenant neglects to cover.

Landlord-tenant issues often start as small, easily resolvable concerns that seem to quickly spiral out-of-control. It's when the New York court system gets involved that things can get quite costly. If you have a problem renter, then you should get a landlord-tenant disputes attorney involved right away. This will help you stay on the right side of the law and protect your rights.

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