We were offered to either pay a normal deposit or nonrefundable deposit on an apartment. We chose the nonrefundable. We moved out of our apartment a year later. We just received a bill that has already been sent to a collection company for damages. However we moved out just over a month ago. Anyway they are claiming they had to replace carpet. Wouldn't the nonrefundable deposit count towards the bill?
Your lease agreement needs to be reviewed to know what you agreed to by paying a non-refundable deposit. Typically, non-refundable deposits concern pets due to the fact that landlords usually have increased clean up costs after tenants with pets have vacated their rental property. I suggest you bring your lease to an attorney for a full review of the terms and all the facts.
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There are a lot of issues with such deposits and whether they are allowed in a residential tenancy. You need to retain a tenant/renters lawyer to review the issue. Many times these are simply scams used by landlord and property management companies to circumvent Fla. Stat. 83.49 and are often illegal penalties.
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It's impossible to stay on line; so I agree, you should consult with a good local tenants lawyer to see what is going on here. The fact is, Section 83,49 Florida Statute (set out below) governs security deposit in residential Leases, and there is NO such thing in the statute (even for "pets"!) as a "nonrefundable deposit." If true, to me, on first glance, anyway, its a clear violation of the statute My guess is, some incompetent (or overreaching) property manager, or landlord drafted that lease.
Consult with a food local tenants attorney for a more thorough analysis.
Hope this helps.
83.49 Deposit money or advance rent; duty of landlord and tenant.—
(1) Whenever money is deposited or advanced by a tenant on a rental agreement as security for performance of the rental agreement or as advance rent for other than the next immediate rental period, the landlord or the landlord’s agent shall either:
(a) Hold the total amount of such money in a separate non-interest-bearing account in a Florida banking institution for the benefit of the tenant or tenants. The landlord shall not commingle such moneys with any other funds of the landlord or hypothecate, pledge, or in any other way make use of such moneys until such moneys are actually due the landlord;
(b) Hold the total amount of such money in a separate interest-bearing account in a Florida banking institution for the benefit of the tenant or tenants, in which case the tenant shall receive and collect interest in an amount of at least 75 percent of the annualized average interest rate payable on such account or interest at the rate of 5 percent per year, simple interest, whichever the landlord elects. The landlord shall not commingle such moneys with any other funds of the landlord or hypothecate, pledge, or in any other way make use of such moneys until such moneys are actually due the landlord; or
(c) Post a surety bond, executed by the landlord as principal and a surety company authorized and licensed to do business in the state as surety, with the clerk of the circuit court in the county in which the dwelling unit is located in the total amount of the security deposits and advance rent he or she holds on behalf of the tenants or $50,000, whichever is less. The bond shall be conditioned upon the faithful compliance of the landlord with the provisions of this section and shall run to the Governor for the benefit of any tenant injured by the landlord’s violation of the provisions of this section. In addition to posting the surety bond, the landlord shall pay to the tenant interest at the rate of 5 percent per year, simple interest. A landlord, or the landlord’s agent, engaged in the renting of dwelling units in five or more counties, who holds deposit moneys or advance rent and who is otherwise subject to the provisions of this section, may, in lieu of posting a surety bond in each county, elect to post a surety bond in the form and manner provided in this paragraph with the office of the Secretary of State. The bond shall be in the total amount of the security deposit or advance rent held on behalf of tenants or in the amount of $250,000, whichever is less. The bond shall be conditioned upon the faithful compliance of the landlord with the provisions of this section and shall run to the Governor for the benefit of any tenant injured by the landlord’s violation of this section. In addition to posting a surety bond, the landlord shall pay to the tenant interest on the security deposit or advance rent held on behalf of that tenant at the rate of 5 percent per year simple interest.
(2) The landlord shall, in the lease agreement or within 30 days after receipt of advance rent or a security deposit, give written notice to the tenant which includes disclosure of the advance rent or security deposit. Subsequent to providing such written notice, if the landlord changes the manner or location in which he or she is holding the advance rent or security deposit......MORE...
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