If you’re a renter, chances are you’re pretty familiar with the concept of an apartment security deposit. Most landlords require money up front—often the amount equal to one month’s rent—that they will hold for the duration of the lease.
This cash is a bit of an insurance policy for the property owner. Once the tenant’s lease is up and it’s time for them to leave, the landlord can use that security deposit to cover the cost of anything that needs fixed. If they don’t need all of it, then the money is supposed to be refunded to the tenant.
Every Landlord Is Different
Some landlords have checklists with dollar amounts, so the tenant can document the apartment’s condition when they move in and out. This way, they’re not left with paying for damage that was already there when they moved in.
Many landlords will ask their tenants to clean the place up when they move. Others will just put some of the deposit money towards a professional cleaner.
No matter the lease terms, tenants can usually get at least a portion of their security deposit back if the property is clean and doesn’t have any major damage when the lease expires. But apparently, some landlords look for any reason they can find to avoid giving that money back.
$300 Lost Because Of A Pea
Unfortunately for a woman named Matilda on TikTok, she had a landlord that wanted to keep every penny of her security deposit. Even though she cleaned up her apartment upon move-out and left it in good condition, she wasn’t able to get all of her money back.
In a video clip, Matilda explains that her landlord had a few “issues” with the property when she moved out. She says that she was given a few reasons as to why she didn’t get her $300 back.
Matilda’s video clip begins with the text, “Rating the reasons we’re not getting our full deposit back.” She then shows a pic of her freezer with a single pea left behind and writes, “Must have been hard to clean that up.”
Next, she shares an image of a bottle of Febreeze that was left on the floor. To that, she writes, “Maybe they didn’t like the smell.” Matilda was also penalized due to a “small piece of paper on the floor.”
The last reason she didn’t get her money back remains a mystery because the pic the landlord sent was too blurry. “Don’t even know what this is supposed to be,” Matilda concludes.
Whatever it was, it cost her $300.