Scare of Landlord Keeping Deposit

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Scare of Landlord Keeping Deposit

Postby Confuzius » 24 Jul 2012, 00:43

We are moving, found a new house, but our lease overlaps 1 month. No biggie, right? Just eat the one extra month of rent. BUT....

We have had an ongoing problem with our main AC unit. When we first moved in, our landlord bought a new one. However, he has not done maintinence on it (the cleaning that is supposed to happen at the beginning of summer) now the entire thing is filled with water, sounds like a gurgling bear when on, can only get the room down to 27 degrees with being on max ALL day. I originally posted the problem here:

http://www.forumosa.com/taiwan/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=110707&hilit=water+ac+hole

Landlord dealt with Carefour, who doesn't want to replace it even though it is still under warranty. So I brought over a repairman who was going to clean it, but my landlord refused to pay to clean it since the repairman said it may only be a TEMPORARY fix (which I thought maintenance was).

So now, we simply do not use it. We (wife and I) are both allergic to mold and have been having quite a bit of respiratory problems lately. Since we quit using this unit, they have been clearing up! But the landlord still refuses to do anything...

He blames us, says we "must use the ac wrong". WTF?!??! How can you use AC wrong? You turn the thing on, set it and voila! But he says we use it wrong. When I ask him how, he has no answer, just we "use it wrong" and refuses to do anything.

OK, so now to move and security deposit....

So I asked the landlord, nicely, since we have been patient with the AC thing (which has gone on for a over a month now...look at the date of my post, Jun 8) if he would let us out of the lease ONE month early since we found a new place-he refuses.

So, I was still thinking on paying our last month's rent, but my wife thinks we should not, since our LL is being a tool, blaming us for his lack of AC maintenance, who will then likely just keep our deposit plus have another month's worth of our money in his pocket-so better to be out 2 months than 3.

But is there an easy alternative? I would like to get my deposit back, but with how things are going I think my wife might be right, we should just bight the bullet, lose our 2 month deposit and not pay last month's rent (since, he is actually in breach of contract himself as the AC unit is written in the lease). So again, better to lose 2 months rent money than 3 since he is acting like this allofasudden. But is there a better way to go about doing this? Arbitration? I dunno, suggestions please! :pray:
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Re: Scare of Landlord Keeping Deposit

Postby Confuzius » 24 Jul 2012, 00:45

Oh yes, and as suggested in the other thread:

Icon wrote:I strongly reccommend you and anybody else to call their shuidien han or general repair guy or the service department of the brand of their AC -Panasonic, Hitachi, Teco- and have them clean/do a general sweep of their AC's before starting them on for the season. Sometimes, the machines clog from not being used, and fires may occur. Sometimes they won't start or will not deliver enough cold air, or drain too much power, in which case they may need a reinstallment of the special gas they use or something else.

Confuzious, I'd hate to see you get electrocuted. Please call the shuidien.


Our electric bill was 7000nt over the last 2 months due to the stupid AC. We have the bill as proof and even showed the lanlord.
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Re: Scare of Landlord Keeping Deposit

Postby Mucha Man » 24 Jul 2012, 00:58

Definitely don't pay the last month's rent but just tell the landlord this upfront as if it is no big deal. Actually it isn't, as many people, me included do this. Especially with a 3 month deposit (oh never ever pay one of those again) it is entirely reasonable.

So tell the landlord he can deduct the last month's rent from the deposit and that you'll collect the rest when you move out.

Edit: wait, you say you paid a two month deposit? Then at most you lose a month's worth.
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Re: Scare of Landlord Keeping Deposit

Postby maunaloa » 24 Jul 2012, 03:09

Your lease should state that "ordinary wear and tear" is excluded from items chargeable against the security deposit. Ordinary maintenance of appliances is the Landlord's duty.

Instructing the landlord to use the security deposit for the last month's rent is technically a default, but usually just an NSF charge, since base rent and security deposit are different accounts. So... request permission to use the security deposit for the last month's rent, and if the landlord agrees IN WRITING (email is fine), no default.
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Re: Scare of Landlord Keeping Deposit

Postby ironlady » 24 Jul 2012, 14:00

I have often found that asking gently about whether the landlord has reported the rent money on his taxes helps to shake things like retained deposits loose quickly. They do not want you letting the Tax Office know they are collecting rent money, because almost none of them pay taxes on the income.
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