A young man rented his first apartment for two years. When he moved out, his landlord made up excuses to keep his security deposit, but he was about to be taught a lesson about lying!
It’s All Good
OP (Original Poster) was a young man renting his first apartment, where he lived for two years. During that time, he had no problems, and he had always paid his rent on time.
Using Online Banks
At the time, OP used an online bank to pay his rent that didn’t issue checkbooks for use by their clients. What they would do instead was print a check for an amount specified and mail it to the recipient on behalf of their client with a 90-day period before the check was rendered invalid.
Is Anyone There?
For two months after OP had moved out, he kept trying to get into contact with his landlord because he wanted his security deposit back. He called and texted his landlord, but the landlord never got back to him.
The security deposit equated to one month’s rent, so it was something he wanted to get back.
Waiting Things Out
Having had enough, OP decided to return to his old building and wait. He chose the first day of the month because he knew his landlord would always show up then to get rent from his tenants.
A Sob Story
When OP confronted his former landlord, he was told that the reason the landlord hadn’t gotten back to him was that he had been in the hospital due to a heart attack. He also told OP he wouldn’t be getting his deposit back because the cupboards were dirty, and there was a little mold above the shower.
A Careful Tenant
OP knew this was a lie because he had cleaned every surface of the apartment. Not only had the apartment been clean, but there was no damage to the drywall or paint inside the apartment either.
Know Your Rights
OP could have challenged the landlord in court, but he was young and didn’t know how to proceed, so he decided to let it go. It had been his first apartment, and he didn’t understand the renter’s rights.
Now You Need Me?
A couple of months had passed when OP heard from his landlord again. This time, the landlord told him that one of his rent checks had bounced.
Not This Again
OP told his landlord that was “impossible” because the funds were put on hold as soon as the bank printed the check. Therefore, the checks couldn’t bounce.
Not the Full Truth
The landlord changed his story when OP told him about the checks, and the truth came out. The landlord blamed his secretary, saying that she had dropped the check behind her desk and hadn’t found it for more than 90 days.
Isn’t That a Shame?
OP told his landlord that he should have told him right away so he could have had the check canceled. It would have then been possible to reissue a check to the landlord for the rent.
You Snooze, You Lose!
OP then reminded the landlord that he had kept his security deposit, so OP didn’t feel “inclined to help him” or do him any favors. He then hung up on the landlord, never hearing from him again.
What Redditors Think About the Issue
Redditors were glad his shady landlord paid the price but pointed out that not every state has the same laws, so people should be careful.
One Redditor said, “I don’t rent anymore, thank God, but it just dawned on me that I live in a state with zero renter protections, and I never got my deposit back despite always going above and beyond to make the place look like it was when I took possession. Looking ahead, if I ever have to rent again, I’d find out in advance from my neighbors if they ever got their rent check back. That way, if the answer is a prevailing no, I’d give my 45-day notice and just not pay the last month’s rent.”
Another Redditor pointed out, “Every place I’ve ever rented, I’ve not paid the last month’s rent and let them keep the security deposit, and it’s never worked out bad. Finally moved into my own property last year where I constantly up the rent, never fix anything, and spend my evenings painting over all skirting boards and window ledges with thick white gloss paint.”
Bad Landlords Hurt Everyone
Many Redditors pointed out that this kind of shady behavior made all landlords look bad, and renters rarely win disputes.
One Redditor pointed out how the laws work, saying, “In some states, landlord abuses are paid out at twice or triple what they ‘took’ to protect the tenant and make the offenses less easy to carry out. Most landlord-tenant laws are weighted in favor of the landlord, but sometimes, it’s nice to see the little guy win.”
What do you think about what OP did to his landlord? Was he justified in not paying for that month to make up for the deposit that his landlord stole?
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This post first appeared as His Landlord Cheated Him Out of His Security Deposit, Lying About “Dirty Cupboards and Mold.” So, as Payback, He Decided to Teach Him Why One Shouldn’t Lie and “Screw Over” Their Tenants! on Quote Ambition.