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Residential Property Management/Security deposit & last month rent...refund?


When we moved into the rental home we are now living in, we payed first and last months rent. A day after Christmas our landlords advised us that the property has been sold and we have until February 1 2015 to find another residence. My question is, since we paid the first and last are the landlords responsible to pay us the deposit. We have found another place to live, but feel we are paying rent for two homes .
Thank you

Hello Diane,

You did not say if the landlord is breaking your lease due to the sale, or did he give you proper notice to move out. In Washington State for instance, an owner of residential rental property must give a 20-Day Notice to terminate a rental contract if it is month-to-month. If the termination is during a lease then the renter has additional rights.

As for deposit? You say you paid "first and last months rent" but did not say if you paid deposit, so I will assume you did pay it. In my state, the tenant must move out before an owner or landlord can determine a settlement of deposit funds, in case the home is dirty then they can keep a portion of the deposit by showing due cause.

If you are referring to your last month rent you paid in advance? Then that should cover January rent so you can use your January rent that you would have had to pay for the new rental.

Please be aware, and I hate to say this but: A LOT OF OWNERS AND MANY LANDLORDS ROUTINELY DO NOT GIVE BACK DEPOSITS.... even if you do leave the place clean. We are different. We LOVE to give deposits back, and we give our tenants a cleaning list to guide them.

I am only licensed in Washington State and my comments are meant for residents of my state, but I do hope that this information does help you.

Kind regards,

Donald J. Leske Sr.
Webmaster & Licensed Broker
10909 Portland Ave. Suite-L
Tacoma, WA 98445
Office: 253.531.1010

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Donald J. Leske II


Advocate for Landlord & Tenant Rights. Based in Washington State as a Licensed Real Estate Broker and Property Manager. I am a Landlord but I am not a Lawyer. Ask any question dealing with the rental of residential properties, including; 1. Evictions. 2. Maintenance & repair issues. 3. How to set a fair rental price. 4. When to hire a property manager. 5. Selling and how to determine value. 6. Basic tax questions and Legal issues ok, but most will be referred to a professional in that field.


I have 30 years experience in Property Management with about 560 clients, plus I own my own Real Estate Brokerage ( with expanded experience & training in Short Sales, Foreclosure negotiations and rental property management. I write an informal online Real Estate News Magazine and am a member of NARPM, National Association of Residential Property Managers and have been quoted by News Agencies.


Rated and reviewed Editorials, Advice and short Articles at Trulia, Active Rain and All Experts online. Advice Contributor contributor
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ABR Certified, State of Washington Licensed Agent & Broker. Past member of BBB, Chamber of Commerce and Board of Realtors.

Awards and Honors
2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 Presidents Gold Award for high achievement, John L. Scott Realty. - "Shining Star Award" 2006 - 03/04/05/06 All Star of the Year Award for excellence.

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