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Security Deposits Are the Bane of Many Renters. Lawmakers Want to Change That.
Wall Street Journal ^ | January 18, 2020 | Will Parker

Posted on 01/18/2020 4:03:24 PM PST by karpov

A growing number of legislators are trying to eliminate a practice that has prevented many lower- and middle-income people from renting an apartment: the steep, all-cash security deposit.

With low-cost housing hard to come by in many states, state and city lawmakers are introducing bills that would give younger renters and others strapped for cash the choice to replace security deposits with insurance policies or installment plans paid overtime. These payments are usually equivalent to one or two months’ rent, which landlords require as a guarantee against damages.

Cincinnati on Wednesday became the first U.S. city to require that landlords accept alternatives to a cash deposit, including payment plans and insurance.

New York state lawmakers recently passed a measure limiting deposits to no more than one month’s rent. A member of the Virginia House of Delegates submitted a bill to give tenants options for how they pay deposits last week. Legislators in Connecticut, Alabama and New Hampshire say they plan to introduce similar bills.

Laws to ease costs associated with security deposits are part of a growing effort by lawmakers in a number of states to address the shortage of affordable housing and rapidly rising rents. Over the past year, California, New York and Oregon have introduced new limits on rent, while others have enhanced protections against evictions.

Average rents rose 36% nationally over the past decade, though rents rose more than twice that amount in hot markets such as Denver and Seattle, according to data provider Yardi Matrix. About a quarter of American renters pay 50% or more of their income in rent, according to listings platform Apartment List.

Many landlords are already pushing back against the security-deposit legislation. They say collecting all-cash security deposits at move-in is necessary to protect their assets

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Business/Economy; US: Alabama; US: Connecticut; US: New Hampshire; US: New York; US: Virginia
KEYWORDS: housing
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To: firebrand

In Japan it can be as much as 6 to 8 months rent just to move in. Not including utilities. When you move out, you get nothing back. We are talking some serious cash.

61 posted on 01/18/2020 5:17:02 PM PST by redshawk ( I want my red balloon. (
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To: firebrand

So you’re saying an oven is not a BBQ grill?
That’s harsh.

62 posted on 01/18/2020 5:19:04 PM PST by GnuThere
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To: dynachrome
I don't understand how they can say "all cash security deposit". That's BS. A bank check is used.

Perhaps these lawmakers should read the leases. According to lease agreements Security deposit is placed in a separate account. The tenant is notified of the account. When they move out they receive their security deposit PLUS the interest collected. SD is not the last month rent. It is used for damages.

We just had some tenants move out. The apartment was a mess, nail holes everywhere and heavy West Elm furniture left behind. The sofa itself was worth 1 1/2 month's rent, a Mongolian Lamb poof chair worth $400... and they had complained that the rent was too high. Meanwhile it cost the landlord 1k to move that furniture to the curb.

A security deposit is needed. Oh and lawyers are the worst tenants. THE WORST.

63 posted on 01/18/2020 5:20:03 PM PST by 1_Rain_Drop
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To: MrBambaLaMamba
"The government should force property owners to provide room and board to the less fortunate, everybody wins!"

That's called section 8. Every building can have one apartment in that program.

IN NYC, there's the SCRIE program where NYC pays part of the rent for senior citizens. That money is deducted from the landlord's Property Taxes. NYC used to apply it to the current year but this year they decided that they will deduct it next year.

64 posted on 01/18/2020 5:30:31 PM PST by 1_Rain_Drop
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To: TexasGator

I have when I’ve paid with a debit card.

65 posted on 01/18/2020 5:31:42 PM PST by mass55th ("Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway." ~~ John Wayne)
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To: silverleaf
That came about because charging renters for damage that was there became the norm during the depression and has never been addressed.

I have friends with rental properties and I have seen the way a place can be trashed.

Nonetheless the abuse on the side of landlords has been allowed to circumvent even the tiniest pretense of due process for a century.

What probably needs to be done is assign some bloated government entity (perhaps the county courthouse with maintaining photographic records.

Renter registers photographs of the property upon taking the lease and whenever damage which falls on the landlord occurs. Landlord registers photographs during the property inspections they are supposed to be doing. Both register photographs when the renter moves out.

Pain in the ass?
So what.

66 posted on 01/18/2020 5:36:44 PM PST by MrEdd (Caveat Emptor)
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To: karpov

Alternatives should be offered. And if landlords don’t offer them, then the law has to step in.

67 posted on 01/18/2020 5:36:48 PM PST by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives In My Heart Forever)
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To: Harmless Teddy Bear

I used regular dish washing detergent in my dishwasher once, mainly out of curiosity of what would happen. I’ll never do that again.

68 posted on 01/18/2020 5:39:17 PM PST by Newtoidaho (All I ask of living is to have no chains on me.)
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To: Rastus
#30: " knew a guy who put in a brand new electric oven and when the tenants moved out (having totally trashed the place), it turned out they had burned logs in the oven."

I totally believe it. I used to do part time handy-man work to supplement my income. I've seen it all. But that is a new one on me!!!

I was thinking of buying a couple of rental units to supplement my retirement, but it is too much work for so little profit.

Love that picture! That is a KEEPER!

69 posted on 01/18/2020 5:39:32 PM PST by Governor Dinwiddie (Guide me, O thou great redeemer, pilgrim through this barren land.)
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To: Governor Dinwiddie

My apartment is virtually trash proof.

Most of it is my stuff so I have incentive to maintain the property in good condition.

The landlord’s handyman had to fix my bed mattress board which broke which was made of the cheapest kind of wood.

The new board is solid wood and has stood up even to my standing on the bed. I’m happy now.

70 posted on 01/18/2020 5:46:09 PM PST by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives In My Heart Forever)
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To: KevinB
I may take a chance on someone with less than stellar credit if I get a meaningful security deposit. If I can't get a meaningful security deposit, they will have to go elsewhere.

Yep. Landlords will be less likely to take a risk if they know they're going to get stuck for damages. And as many people have pointed out, some birds just foul their own nests.

71 posted on 01/18/2020 6:07:04 PM PST by A_perfect_lady (The greatest wealth is to live content with little. -Plato)
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To: silverleaf

I hope you understand that tenants do this when they don’t trust the landlord to return their security deposit. We had to pay the last month’s rent and then we had to sue to get our security deposit back, as the apartment was left in excellent condition. We shouldn’t have had to do this.

The landlord probably thought because we were four women, we wouldn’t be able to unite and organize to fight him.

72 posted on 01/18/2020 6:13:06 PM PST by firebrand
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To: redshawk

I bet the Japanese tend to leave their rented apartments in pretty good condition. Regular wear and tear, but none of the uncaring neglect and abuse discussed in this thread.

73 posted on 01/18/2020 6:15:39 PM PST by Rastus
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To: silverleaf

And I hope you saw my first reply to this thread, comment 12, where I said one month was not enough in NYC, where it takes the landlord more than one month to get squatters out.

74 posted on 01/18/2020 6:18:57 PM PST by firebrand
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To: Rastus

Tenants should either post insurance or a sum sufficient to cover damages but not two months rent.

I think that’s perfectly reasonable. And if landlords can’t accept that, then they shouldn’t be renting out in the first place.

If you don’t trust tenants, any money they could post as surety doesn’t really matter.

75 posted on 01/18/2020 6:21:23 PM PST by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives In My Heart Forever)
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To: Rastus

A better maintained and cleaner apt the likes you’ve never seen. Though the non Japanese tend to not care as much and tend to be trouble.

76 posted on 01/18/2020 6:26:46 PM PST by redshawk ( I want my red balloon. (
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To: karpov

the only reason that landlords are asking for double security deposit, is that the states stopped permitting them to ask for last months rent.

77 posted on 01/18/2020 6:27:12 PM PST by Chickensoup (Voter ID for 2020!! Leftists totalitarian fascists appear to be planning to eradicate conservatives)
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To: firebrand

Wow same here. My complex has many from other countries. Someone has been flushing female pads that is affecting my toilet. They have seen moved out and had no problems with my toilet.

78 posted on 01/18/2020 6:38:10 PM PST by Patriot Babe
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To: devane617

In the apartment building with 36 units I live in we had one guy upon moving out because he was evicted for not paying rent. He kick a large hole in the front door from both sides. Another liked smoking dope and were evicted as well and left the place a big mess. Another the police kicked in the door due to drug dealing.

Another was a hoarder who had a trail from the front door to the kitchen and bath. He stored boxes of stuff in the shower. Another started a smoldering fire from a lit joint he forgot about. It fell onto the carpet and melted the carpet and the plastic under the bed. A minute more and the whole apartment would have been in flames. Smoke very thick and black.

79 posted on 01/18/2020 6:57:23 PM PST by minnesota_bound (homeless guy. He just has more money....)
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To: karpov

The attack on landlords is causing many to leave the business. I would expect their to be fewer and fewer homes for rent. Liberal governments see all landlords as bad people who take advantage of poor tenants. When in fact it is more and more the other way around. And it is always the landlords who pay the price.

80 posted on 01/18/2020 7:24:44 PM PST by Revel
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