To Pay or Not to Pay – the confusion around damage deposits

Monday, March 27, 2006


Written by Candice Riley

So you have found a great place to move in to and you are about to sign the lease, but before you do, you think about all of the things that you need to consider when signing… so you ask a few questions.

Then as you are discussing the lease the landlord asks for a damage deposit…what do you do? This is something that is brought up a lot when students are looking to sign their leases. A landlord will ask for something called a damage or security deposit before the lease is signed so if there is any damage done to the place while you and your housemates are living there, your landlord can take the money out of the damage deposit. However, asking for a damage or security deposit is illegal! If you are covered by the Tenant Protection Act (TPA), then a landlord cannot ask you to pay a damage deposit and you can refuse to pay it if asked.

A landlord is responsible for expenses covering the maintenance and repairs to your place that are a result of general wear and tear, and if some damage occurs, such as a hole put in a wall, as a result of the tenants’ actions then the landlord has the right to ask for payment for those repairs. But a damage deposit is not necessary and potential tenants need to be aware of this fact.

What money can your landlord ask you for? Well, there are 2 sums that they can ask for: first month’s rent and a last month’s rent. The last month’s rent can not be used to cover any damage expenses – it really does have to be applied to the last month’s rent (and your landlord owes you 6% interest on it at the end of each year).

So be cautious when you are signing a lease and read information on what should and should not be included in the lease before you sign, visit the Neighbourhood Relations website. Moving off campus is a great experience so just make sure you make the most of your time and money!

| More


Back to Top

No comments

Share your thoughts

Bookstore First Year