How to get your apartment rental deposit back

Categories: Moving

So you are moving on from your apartment and soon it will be home to a new renter. But before that, your landlord will be coming in to inspect every inch of the apartment to see whether or not you will receive your security deposit back. You may have lived here for as long as a decade or as briefly as 6 months, but living in a home surely takes a toll on any place. Here are some tips on how to get your security deposit back.

think ahead and get rental security deposit back

1. Have foresight

Before you paint any walls or hang any pictures, study your rental contract in detail to know what you are and aren’t allowed to do. Use this as your guide as you live in your space.

2. Get rid of any evidence of furry friends

Do you have a furry animal? Even if you don’t think they shed, they do. Take a vacuum to the floors of any area where they have been, especially carpets! Then clean the floors as per the instructions below! You may also consider leaving the windows open for a while before moving out to allow some pet dandruff to leave the house. 

clean to get rental security deposit back

3. Clean it up

This is one of the most basic tips, but may be the most important. If you can show your landlord that you care about the place and cleaned it up for the new tenant, he may overlook the scuffs on the front door! To get your clean up done effectively and efficiently, clean after you pack your things, if possible. Mix warm water and a bit of all-purpose cleaner, and wipe down the entire kitchen, all floors, walls (if needed), and finally all bathrooms top to bottom. Be sure to use a cleaner that will not damage the surfaces and appliances you are cleaning!

Don’t forget the windows! Windows tend to have black grime on the inside of the frames. Many attribute this to be simply built up dirt, but in many cases it is black mold. Be sure to clean this up safely as not to expose yourself to any mold.

fix walls to get rental security deposit back

4. Fix up your walls

Did you hang up your favourite pictures in your apartment? The holes in the wall surely won’t impress your landlord, so try your best to patch up the walls if possible, and if allowed by your rental contract. If you are allowed to patch and paint, use a drywall repair kit to patch the hole over, and then paint the wall. If the holes are minimal and they weren’t strictly against your rental contract, you may be better off to leave them.

Don’t forget to check your rental contract for the rules on painting. Some may allow you to paint the walls, but only if you paint them back to their original colour before you move out!

5. Take all of your things

You may be tempted to leave anything you no longer need at your old apartment when you move, but this is a sure way to anger the landlord into keeping your security deposit! Take anything you don’t want to a donation centre or dispose of it in the garbage, or at your local waste management facility.

You may want to leave something that you think the next tenant may appreciate like the bar stools that you bought last year that don’t match your new place. In a case like this, you can check with your landlord to see if it’s okay, but in most cases, you are better off taking everything out.

It may seem like a lot of effort, but fixing the place up for the new tenant is both kind and rewarding if you can get a significant security deposit back. Take the time to cover these steps to increase your chances!