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Re: LL refuses to grant a walk-through

Posted by dave on February 05, 2002 at 18:17:10:

In Reply to: LL refuses to grant a walk-through posted by Carol on February 05, 2002 at 16:58:39:

California code:

1950.5. (a) This section applies to security for a rental agreement
for residential property that is used as the dwelling of the tenant.

(b) As used in this section, "security" means any payment, fee,
deposit or charge, including, but not limited to, an advance payment
of rent, used or to be used for any purpose, including, but not
limited to, any of the following:
(1) The compensation of a landlord for a tenant's default in the
payment of rent.
(2) The repair of damages to the premises, exclusive of ordinary
wear and tear, caused by the tenant or by a guest or licensee of the
(3) The cleaning of the premises upon termination of the tenancy.

(4) To remedy future defaults by the tenant in any obligation
under the rental agreement to restore, replace, or return personal
property or appurtenances, exclusive of ordinary wear and tear, if
the security deposit is authorized to be applied thereto by the
rental agreement.
(c) A landlord may not demand or receive security, however
denominated, in an amount or value in excess of an amount equal to
two months' rent, in the case of unfurnished residential property,
and an amount equal to three months' rent, in the case of furnished
residential property, in addition to any rent for the first month
paid on or before initial occupancy.
This subdivision does not prohibit an advance payment of not less
than six months' rent where the term of the lease is six months or
This subdivision does not preclude a landlord and a tenant from
entering into a mutual agreement for the landlord, at the request of
the tenant and for a specified fee or charge, to make structural,
decorative, furnishing, or other similar alterations, if the
alterations are other than cleaning or repairing for which the
landlord may charge the previous tenant as provided by subdivision
(d) Any security shall be held by the landlord for the tenant who
is party to the lease or agreement. The claim of a tenant to the
security shall be prior to the claim of any creditor of the landlord.

(e) The landlord may claim of the security only those amounts as
are reasonably necessary for the purposes specified in subdivision
(b). The landlord may not assert a claim against the tenant or the
security for damages to the premises or any defective conditions that
preexisted the tenancy, for ordinary wear and tear or the effects
thereof, whether the wear and tear preexisted the tenancy or occurred
during the tenancy, or for the cumulative effects of ordinary wear
and tear occurring during any one or more tenancies.
(f) Within three weeks after the tenant has vacated the premises,
the landlord shall furnish the tenant, by personal delivery or by
first-class mail, postage prepaid, a copy of an itemized statement
indicating the basis for, and the amount of, any security received
and the disposition of the security and shall return any remaining
portion of the security to the tenant.
(g) Upon termination of the landlord's interest in the dwelling
unit in question, whether by sale, assignment, death, appointment of
receiver or otherwise, the landlord or the landlord's agent shall,
within a reasonable time, do one of the following acts, either of
which shall relieve the landlord of further liability with respect to
the security held:
(1) Transfer the portion of the security remaining after any
lawful deductions made under subdivision (e) to the landlord's
successor in interest. The landlord shall thereafter notify the
tenant by personal delivery or by first-class mail, postage prepaid,
of the transfer, of any claims made against the security, of the
amount of the security deposited, and of the names of the successors
in interest, their address, and their telephone number. If the
notice to the tenant is made by personal delivery, the tenant shall
acknowledge receipt of the notice and sign his or her name on the
landlord's copy of the notice.
(2) Return the portion of the security remaining after any lawful
deductions made under subdivision (e) to the tenant, together with an
accounting as provided in subdivision (f).
(h) Prior to the voluntary transfer of a landlord's interest in a
dwelling unit, the landlord shall deliver to the landlord's successor
in interest a written statement indicating the following:
(1) The security remaining after any lawful deductions are made.
(2) An itemization of any lawful deductions from any security
(3) His or her election under paragraph (1) or (2) of subdivision
Nothing in this subdivision shall affect the validity of title to
the real property transferred in violation of the provisions of this
(i) In the event of noncompliance with subdivision (g), the
landlord's successors in interest shall be jointly and severally
liable with the landlord for repayment of the security, or that
portion thereof to which the tenant is entitled, when and as provided
in subdivisions (e) and (f). A successor in interest of a landlord
may not require the tenant to post any security to replace that
amount not transferred to the tenant or successors in interest as
provided in subdivision (g), unless and until the successor in
interest first makes restitution of the initial security as provided
in paragraph (2) of subdivision (g) or provides the tenant with an
accounting as provided in subdivision (f).
Nothing in this subdivision shall preclude a successor in interest
from recovering from the tenant compensatory damages that are in
excess of the security received from the landlord previously paid by
the tenant to the landlord.
Notwithstanding the provisions of this subdivision, if, upon
inquiry and reasonable investigation, a landlord's successor in
interest has a good faith belief that the lawfully remaining security
deposit is transferred to him or her or returned to the tenant
pursuant to subdivision (g), he or she shall not be liable for
damages as provided in subdivision (k), or any security not
transferred pursuant to subdivision (g).
(j) Upon receipt of any portion of the security under paragraph
(1) of subdivision (g), the landlord's successors in interest shall
have all of the rights and obligations of a landlord holding the
security with respect to the security.
(k) The bad faith claim or retention by a landlord or the landlord'
s successors in interest of the security or any portion thereof in
violation of this section, or the bad faith demand of replacement
security in violation of subdivision (i), may subject the landlord or
the landlord's successors in interest to statutory damages of up to
six hundred dollars ($600), in addition to actual damages. The court
may award damages for bad faith whenever the facts warrant such an
award, regardless of whether the injured party has specifically
requested relief. In any action under this section, the landlord or
the landlord's successors in interest shall have the burden of proof
as to the reasonableness of the amounts claimed or the authority
pursuant to this section to demand additional security deposits.
(l) No lease or rental agreement shall contain any provision
characterizing any security as "nonrefundable."
(m) Any action under this section may be maintained in small
claims court if the damages claimed, whether actual or statutory or
both, are within the jurisdictional amount allowed by Section 116.220
of the Code of Civil Procedure.
(n) Proof of the existence of and the amount of a security deposit
may be established by any credible evidence, including, but not
limited to, a canceled check, a receipt, a lease indicating the
requirement of a deposit as well as the amount, prior consistent
statements or actions of the landlord or tenant, or a statement under
penalty of perjury that satisfies the credibility requirements set
forth in Section 780 of the Evidence Code.
(o) The amendments to this section made during the 1985 portion of
the 1985-86 Regular Session of the Legislature that are set forth in
subdivision (e) are declaratory of existing law.

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