Posted by Frank Chin on August 01, 2001 at 08:10:18:
It would be better if you have a rental application that spells out what happens in the case the person changes his mind. Do you??
I also try to get the person the sign a lease immediately, rather than to wait a week, to July 30, just 2 days before the beginning of August to tell you this.
I would tell him that I’ll try to rent it out as soon as possible, and take into account lost rent, additional ad expenses etc that you would have to deduct from the deposit, if and when its returned. I would mention that at this point, people will be renting up as of September 1st, they have to give notice. You LOST your most valuable week, which is the last week of the month noodling around with this guy.
Then, if you have to give deposits back just because someone changes his mind - why bother even taking it?? Deposits are to protect you from losses when someones changes his mind at the last minute, like finding a cheaper or better place other than yours. I’m sure that’s what happened here.
In the HOT New York City market here, I DON’T accept deposits, as I have multiple applicants. So I have the applicant sign the lease within TWO days of my accepting him, or its on to the next applicant. I have them pay at the month and a half deposit money, plus the first months rent at lease signing, or its on to the next applicant.
In another thread some time back, I mentioned that I don’t even collect the $25.00 or so credit check fee so I can quickly pick and choose from among the applicants and have the apartment tied up quickly.