Damage to property from renters friend

7 Replies

When our renter was moving out, his friend who was helping him move damaged the garage door of another unit.  The friend left his contact information but has not returned any phone calls. Can we withhold the damage from our renters deposit? We are located in Texas. 

@Joshua Harbor They fact that he damaged a different unit makes this tricky. I don't see how you could. If it were damage to his unit then I would say he is responsible.

You might want to call your local magistrate where this case would be heard if it came up and ask their opinion. If they say yes you can withhold from deposit, get the persons name and write down date and time of conversation.

DISCLAIMER: Not a judge/lawyer or even a resident of Texas. I actually live in Taxus...Bada Bing

I would leave a message on the previous tenants number.

"It has come to our attention that while you were moving from the property that one of your guests damaged a garage door. Our attempts at contacting them for resolution have gone unanswered. As I am sure you are aware you are responsible for your guests while they are on the premises. We are deducting an additional $265.18 from your security deposit to cover the damages to the door."

I would then send that same letter with the final itemized list and check. The only reason to call and leave a message is to light a fire under them.

Just my 2 cents and good luck

I'm thinking along the lines of @Mike Cumbie .  In Ohio we have 30 days to get an itemized list of deductions along with the remaining security deposit.  Certainly know your state laws regarding length and process.  The tenant is responsible for the actions of their guests.  Without question I would take it out of the deposit and send the itemized list of repairs done. 

If there are any doubts call your attorney on this one, and I'm not just saying that as a disclaimer.  There are plenty of goofy laws concerning security deposits that are not worth risking a couple hundred dollars for.  If you have to pay an attorney to give you the information you need hopefully its at a minimum and have several questions lined up to get your money's worth.  You would be paying for invaluable education in this case, not just an answer to one issue.

My lease says tenant is responsible for any guests or persons living there . The tenant who brought the dingbat over needs to work it out with his buddy and you need to take it from his deposit money .however this advise may not work for you depending on your specific wording in your lease and local tenant laws

Originally posted by @Joshua Harbor :

When our renter was moving out, his friend who was helping him move damaged the garage door of another unit.  The friend left his contact information but has not returned any phone calls. Can we withhold the damage from our renters deposit? We are located in Texas. 

In our leases we state that the actions of the guests of the tenants are the tenant's responsibility. Does your lease state something to this effect?