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Legalease
Legalease, Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 16289
Experience:  15 yrs residential & commercial leasing experience.
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In the state of Colorado if my tenant abandoned my rental

Customer Question

In the state of Colorado if my tenant abandoned my rental property and don't want to give back my keys, can I legally change the locks even if hey have payed rent?
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Expert:  Legalease replied 9 months ago.

Hello there -

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You can change the locks in this situation. IF the situation is fairly clear based upon the actions the tenant (they have cleared most of their items out) without the 30 days notice required under the landlord / tenant laws, then you can claim that he violated the rental agreement by not giving sufficient notice to you and he abandoned the tenancy and then go ahead and clean out any remaining items as well as cleaning the room itself. If there is any property of the tenant left behind of any arguable value, you should put it into storage on your property (if you can) and notify the tenant in writing that he has 30 days to pick up the remainder of his personal belongings or the belongings will be disposed of as you see fit.

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Finally, if you accepted a security deposit from him, the law requires that you write him a letter and mail it to him within thirty days after he leaves your house and if you intend to keep the deposit as additional rent or for damages, then in that letter you must set forth the reasons for retaining the money and if it is for repairs that are beyond normal wear and tear, you must set out each repair item in a "line item" format with each item of damage itemized and described with some detail so that the tenant will know what the item of damage was. You should set forth a specific amount to fix each item that was broken by the tenant in the letter (EXAMPLE: (A) Broken molding on window ------ $120 materials and labor) WHen you have all items listed, then you should deduct them from the security deposit and then send the remaining amount (if any) to the tenant.

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