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CalAttorney2, Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 10244
Experience:  I am a civil litigation attorney with experience representing both landlords and tenants in residential and commercial property disputes.
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Forced to pay deposits one year before lease is up and

Customer Question

forced to pay deposits one year before lease is up and apartment isnt finished what ave can we take on this matter
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 1 year ago.

Dear Customer,

I am sorry to learn of this situation.

  • RE: Deposit - this is governed by the terms of your lease agreement - unfortunately, there is no cap on security deposits in WA state, but your landlord is limited in what the deposit can be used for, and how you can demand the return of your deposit.
  • RE: Damages/defects in your unit. If the landlord has not made repairs to your unit in over a year despite written requests for him to do so - you may want to consider suing him for breach of written contract in small claims court. You can find information on how to sue in small claims court on the WA Courts website here:
    • Short of filing a lawsuit, you can try to mediate the dispute with them - contact your local bar association and request referrals to mediators, a third party neutral can often help you reach a mutually agreeable resolution. Use the bar association's referrals to contact a mediator or two, the mediator will then contact the other party to set up a mediation session, and you can go from there - hopefully resulting in a formal or written settlement agreement, and save yourself the time and expense of litigation. (You can also include the dispute over the security deposit issue in the same mediation session).