How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Barrister Your Own Question
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 38198
Experience:  16 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years
Type Your Real Estate Law Question Here...
Barrister is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My tenants are trying to use their security deposit as the

Customer Question

My tenants are trying to use their security deposit as the last months rent. I'm quite sure the $900 security deposit will not be enough to fix the things they've done to my property such as using Kerosine instead of heating oil in what was a fairly new furnace. Can I make them pay the last months rent or do I have to sue them once they move?
Thank you,
***** *****
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Barrister replied 2 years ago.
Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I will try my level best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can.
The tenants would have no legal right to use the security deposit as rent unless you allowed it. The purpose of a security deposit is to cover physical damages, cleaning and any delinquent rent once the tenant has vacated.
So if they haven't paid the rent when due, your first step is to give them a 5 day notice to pay or vacate. If they don't pay within that period, then you can pursue a formal eviction against them in court and get a judgment and writ to have the sheriff physically evict them. . Then you can assess any damages, deduct it from the damage deposit, deduct any delinquent rent, and then pursue them in small claims court if there is a balance due.