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Loren, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 34003
Experience:  30 years of real estate practice experience.
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I recently moved out of my condo. The place was "clean"

Customer Question

I recently moved out of my condo.
The place was "clean" according to the person I hired to clean it (usually trustworthy).
I notified the landlord 30 days prior to moving out, and I notified him that I had vacated the place the day I left (exactly 30 days after notification).
The landlord did not send me my deposit back.
According to my contract-lease document he had 30 days to notify me of any reason why he would not refund my deposit.
After several notifications and questions, and after 38 days he finally responded and sent pictures that showed what he called "damage."
After 45 days he sent me a demand letter saying he was keeping my deposit and is demanding an additional $950 to cover the "damages"
According to my contract, he only had 30 days to respond.
He missed that deadline.
Now he is trying to scare me into paying more for trumped up "damages"
How do I get my money back from this dishonest person?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Loren replied 1 year ago.

Good morning. I am Loren, a licensed attorney, and I look for ward to assisting you.

If the landlord has failed to either provide you with the security deposit or an itemized list of deductions within thirty days from moving out, the law may allow you to collect $100, three times the amount of the security deposit wrongly withheld, court costs, and attorney's fees. If the landlord improperly made deductions from the deposit you also have the opportunity to obtain the same damages and penalties. Section 92.109, Property Code.

You can sue in small claims court. Small claims court is designed to be "user friendly" so that you can present a claim without an attorney. Also, it moves much more quickly than regular court. You can get the necessary forms to start from the clerk of the court.

Expert:  Loren replied 1 year ago.

Did you have further questions? Have I answered your question?