WASHINGTON SECURITY DEPOSITS
A nonrefundable fee
cannot be called a "deposit." A refundable
damage or security deposit must be distinguished
from nonrefundable cleaning fees.
If a deposit or
nonrefundable fee is charged, the lease or rental
agreement must be in writing, and must include the
terms and conditions under which any deposit will be
returned. A deposit cannot be withheld for normal
wear and tear.
A written checklist or statement specifically
describing the condition and cleanliness of or
existing damages to the premises and furnishings,
including, but not limited to, walls, floors,
countertops, carpets, drapes, furniture, and
appliances, is provided by the landlord to the
tenant at the commencement of the tenancy. The
checklist or statement shall be signed and dated by
the landlord and the tenant, and the tenant shall be
provided with a copy of the signed checklist or
No such deposit shall be withheld on account
of normal wear and tear resulting from ordinary use
of the premises.
The landlord is
required to keep deposits in a trust account, and
must also provide the tenant with a receipt and the
name and address of the depository.
State laws place no limit
on the amount landlords can charge for security
deposits. When you give the landlord a deposit,
be sure to get AND keep the receipt EVEN if you give
the landlord a check or money order. The amount you
give should also be on the lease. Verify the correct
is on the lease.
INTEREST ON SECURITY DEPOSIT
Any interest earned on a
Washington Security Deposit belong to the landlord.
However, some cities
may have enacted their own laws with respect to
RETURN OF THE SECURITY DEPOSIT
landlord has 14 days after a tenant moves out to
return a deposit, or give a written explanation of
why it (or any part of it) was not refunded.
YOUR OLD LANDLORD YOUR NEW MAILING ADDRESS OR YOU
MAY LOSE SOME RIGHTS.
FAILURE TO RETURN THE SECURITY DEPOSIT
Notify the landlord, in writing, of their failure to
return the deposit.
The notice shall be
delivered to the tenant personally or by mail to his
last known address. If the landlord fails to give
such statement together with any refund due the
tenant within the time limits specified above he
shall be liable to the tenant for the full amount of
the deposit. The landlord is also barred in any
action brought by the tenant to recover the deposit
from asserting any claim or raising any defense for
retaining any of the deposit unless the landlord
shows that circumstances beyond the landlord's
control prevented the landlord from providing the
statement within the fourteen days