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  1. #1

    Default Landlord is Making Excessive Claims of Damage

    My question involves landlord-tenant law in the State of: Michigan

    I moved into a condo 2 years ago with the owner/landlord knowing I had several pets. When I saw the place, she remarked on how it was the original carpet so it wasn't in perfect condition, and that the paint colors were the wall colors from the previous owner. She was not present at the move-in inspection, she sent a friend who signed off on it as I documented some damage to the carpet, a large (I wouldn't call it a stain) square marking from her area rug in the main living area, damage to the corner of the carpet on the stairway from her dog, some damage to the walls (from her wall hangings, etc). Fast forward two years and she has now decided to sell the unit instead of re-renting it. I had cleaners and carpet cleaners in but no, the carpets weren't perfect...but I wasn't that worried, since it seemed reasonable that she would have to replace it anyways. I didn't put ANY color on the walls, nor hang anything of my own, so I didn't add any damage to the walls, nor did I paint. The only spot that I know I need to be accountable for is some damage to the 5x8 entry way of home, to the hardwood, due to some moisture that damaged the wood.
    I provided my mailing address prior to moving out and again the same day I dropped off the keys and garage door opener to her realtor. She sent me an email ranting about having to replace all the carpeting, deep clean, and repaint the entire place (she claims I painted two different walls dark grey and it required 3-4 coats of paint). After her long diatribe, she said the total cost to repair the place was $6,000 and that I was definitely not getting my deposit back, and to not bother contacting her.
    Several questions arise...firstly, the assessment of charges against my deposit was emailed, not mailed, and didn't have an itemized list of charges, just the generic total at the end. It didn't have the required statement of the 7 day required reply or the assumption is I agree to the charges. My question is, do I reply and dispute the charges, or wait the 30 days after vacating for a MAILED claim of damages with itemized charges? Do I request an itemized assessment or simply refute the entire amount? What is my best avenue to try to recover some of my deposit? Thanks in advance for any suggestions!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Behind a Desk

    Default Re: Landlord is Making Excessive Claims of Damage

    You completed a checklist when you moved in, describing any issues with the property, correct? Did you mark all of the pre-existing issues that you are describing to us on your checklist?

    You can start disputing your landlord's claims at any time.

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