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What is the useful life of interior paint in an apartment.

Fort Lauderdale, FL |

I had a tenant that just moved out after 1 1/2 & during tenancy put 144 nail holes in the walls, which walls were freshly painted when tenant moved in. Tenant badly filled a little over 1/2 of holes so the filling must be redone. Since the walls are so marked up & once the holes are properly filled & sanded, all the walls will look like they are diseased. Complete repainting will have to be done instead of patch painting, which is something I try to do as often as possible for a short tenancy like this one, since proper painting with decent paint and a licensed painter is no longer inexpensive. This repainting is going to cost about $900 by the time it's done. What is the average useful life of interior paint and can I charge a depreciated cost again tenant's security deposit?

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Attorney answers 1


You will need to file a claim against the security deposit within 30 days of the tenant leaving. If the walls were freshly painted and the damage requires a complete repainting, that is a valid charge against the security deposit for the full amount. You should take pictures before and after to show the work was required and performed. I'm not sure how you're getting to $900 if you are not using a professional painter. You cannot charge the tenant for your time unless you are a licensed painter.

This communication is not intended to create an attorney/client relationship. It is always recommended you consult an attorney in person to discuss your case. The Law Offices of Stage & Associates practices state-wide and represents homeowners and community associations. Please visit our website at

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