How to Protect Your Security Deposit as a Tenant in Colorado
As a renter, you pay your security deposit in good faith and you may be counting on getting it back at the end of your lease term to help you move. Unfortunately, sometimes there are disagreements between landlords and tenants in Denver, Boulder, and other communities across Colorado, and security deposits are a common cause. Read on to find out how to protect your security deposit as a tenant in Colorado. If you do find yourself unable to agree with your landlord about the security deposit, contact Flaxman Law Group at 970-999-0530 for a free, no obligation consultation with a landlord-tenant dispute attorney in Colorado.Stay Compliant With the Lease Agreement
One way to protect your security deposit as a tenant in Colorado is to make sure you understand your lease agreement before signing it. Do what is expected of you as a tenant, including paying rent on time, and there is less cause for your landlord to withhold part of your security deposit.Document Everything
Before moving in, inspect the rental property and document its condition by taking lots of photographs or videos of each room. Write down and photograph damages or issues. This protects you from being held responsible for pre-existing damages. If you do have a hard time getting your security deposit, having photos in place can help your Colorado landlord-tenant dispute attorney prove your case.
If you communicate with your landlord about any issues, such as repair requests, keep it in writing and keep copies of any emails or letters. Keep copies of checks or other proof of when you paid rent, too.Complete a Move-In and Move-out Inspection
Conduct a move-in inspection with your landlord or property manager. Walk through the property together and make note of any damages, defects, or areas in need of repair. This inspection helps establish a clear baseline for the property's condition.
When you move out, complete a move-our inspection with your landlord or property manager. This can be an early indication as to whether your landlord believes there is any damage on the rental. Take photos as well. If there is any damage caused after you move, you'll be able to prove you weren't responsible.Maintain the Property
Keep the rental clean and tidy, address any repairs that are your responsibility, and report any needed repairs to your landlord promptly. Regular maintenance and care can reduce the chance of damages and enhance your chances of a full refund of your security deposit.Provide Notice of Move-Out
When you decide to move out, give your landlord with written notice, within the timeframe required in your lease agreement. This allows the landlord to plan accordingly and get another tenant, which may mean they're less financially motivated to withhold your security deposit.Get the Rental Into Great Shape Before You Move Out
Carefully clean your rental before you move. Clean the floors, appliances, fixtures, and bathroom. Repair any holes in the walls, scuffs on the paint, and as much of any damage you see as you can. The neater the rental, the better your likelihood of receiving your full security deposit.Request an Itemized Statement
If your Colorado landlord does withhold part of your deposit, request an itemized statement that includes the reasons for the deductions, along with any supporting receipts or paperwork. Review the statement to determine if the deductions are reasonable.
Your landlord may provide estimates from contractors in Denver, Boulder, or other communities if he or she is alleging damage. Take a look at these estimates to see if they seem reasonable.Don't Hesitate to Get Legal Help
If you're renting in Denver, Boulder, or any community in Colorado, there are laws designed to protect you. Contacting a lawyer can help you protect your rights and help you seek to recover your deposit.
If you feel your landlord is trying to withhold your security deposit illegally, contact the Denver offices on Flaxman Law Group by calling 970-999-0530 to set up a free, no obligation consultation with a Colorado landlord-tenant dispute attorney.