My question involves a security deposit in the State of: CA
We are renting out a single-family home in California. An interested party gave us a $4000 cashiers check to hold the property until their move-in date. They were informed via e-mail and in-person that the check would be non-refundable if they did not move in as scheduled; otherwise it would apply to their security deposit.
They did not sign a lease at the time of deposit, telling us the delay was because the husband was out of town. They assured us in writing (e-mail) that they intended to rent the property, but then proceeded to go back and forth with over lease details. Now, two weeks before move-in, they say they do not want to sign the lease to rent the property and want their money returned.
What (if any) of the original $4000 holding deposit are we entitled to keep? It will likely take 30 days to rent the property; the monthly rent is $5000. Thank you!