Photo by PoPville flickr user Olaf Zerbock
We’ve recently moved out of a rental unit in a Columbie Heights row home. We’ve been just shy of harassing our property management company to respond to our inquires regarding the status of our security deposit. Our Property Manager has not responded to us in over a month and if he does not follow up within next few days we are conferring legal action. I’ve been looking up statutes and it looks like if he fails to notify or pay us within 45 days we can demand release of the entire amount of the security deposit, according to DC regulations. Here’s the relevant rule:
309.3 Failure by the owner to comply with § 309.1 and § 309.2 of this section shall constitute prima facie evidence that the tenant is entitled to full return, including interest as provided in § 311, of any deposit or other payment made by the tenant as security for performance of his or her obligations or as a condition of tenancy, in addition to the stipulated rent.
He was also supposed to give us notice of the inspection, according to this rule (and this rule also says the landlord can inspect the unit 3 days before or after termination of residency – obviously we’re way beyond that).
Apparently you can take landlords to small claims court for this type of thing for only $50 or so, which may be worth it to get around $700 per each of the three tenants for the security deposit. Here’s some info on DC security deposit claims. I also wonder if just threatening this sort of legal action would get him in gear?
Any advice would be appreciated!”