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Can I sue for bad faith retention? Landlord intentionally over charged us just so they could have a small claims case for rent.

Concord, CA |

Gave landlord last months rent via check on 10/25/12. Discussed depositing check on the 1st when rent is due. Since they lied about us on a tenant verification causing us to lose a different rental, we confronted them to ask why. They lied again. I have proof though. Since we confronted them, they deposited the check 3 days before the 1st causing NSF fee's. This appeared to be retaliation to the civil confrontation. We then chose to have them use our deposit to cover the last month. There would have been about $500 remaining. They sent a statement charging for Painting + supplies $146.56, Carpet and Tile cleaning $691 (which was only normal wear and tear with NO damages), and a over excessive payment of $300 for cleaning just so they could still file a claim for the last months rent.

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Attorney answers 1


There is a lot to sort out in your question. Practically, you need to file a counterclaim to the landlord's Small Claims action but I would also recommend that you consider taking the matter to mediation.

This is not a substitute for a consultation with a housing law attorney or housing advocacy organization in your community.