Security deposit confusion

3 Replies

Hi Guys,

I have a question about a security deposit. A tenant whose lease is almost up owes a small additional amount of rent (a lesser amount than the security deposit) for part of his last month. Does the security deposit (or at least, the security deposit minus the outstanding rent minus cost of any repairs) have to be returned to him within the legal timeframe (of 45 days in this case) if the remaining rent has not been paid? Or, can the security deposit be held onto until the tenant pays the remaining rent? The state in question is Virginia, but I haven't been able to find an answer online.

Doesn't the first paragraph of this answer that? I read it as- Return what is left in the deposit after what they owe is deducted.

disclaimer: This is not legal advice.

Doesn't your lease cover that in the security deposit section? What it can and cannot be applied to? If not, I'd add it in there. But, to me, thats just common sense. You get to deduct for repairs or back rent owed. The tenants know it too. They aren't dumb enough to push it either.

I can't imagine any state saying you have to return the security deposit even if the tenant has unpaid rents that are still owed. Why would you send them money and then turn around and sue them in court for back rent? That would be the very definition of nonsensical...... Not to put it by the govts out there but still.

This business is usually pretty safe to use common sense. Tenants don't have the money or time to do something like go to court for a couple hundred bucks. Not when you can turn around and countersue for the same amount in back rent and the judge will end up giving them nothing anyway. The court case filing fee will be out of pocket for them then too.....