Published 13. Oktober 2019.
Many tenants often have trouble getting their deposit back when they vacate a property. In legislation, there are special rules that the landlord must comply with. If the rules are not complied with, the landlord may forfeit the right to withhold your deposit. In this article you can read about what the deposit is and how to get it back.
What is the deposit?
There are many who confuse a deposit with prepaid rent. However, it is not the same.
Security deposit is the landlord’s assurance that you will not destroy the property. The deposit must not exceed three months’ rent.
Prepaid rent is a rent that is paid in advance and must not exceed three months. Prepaid rent can be used by the landlord if you as tenant terminate the lease. Then the prepaid rent will be included in the notice period, which you can deduct from the regular rent payments.
For example, if you terminate the lease on January 1, the landlord will be entitled to a notice period of three months, ie. until March 31, when the prepaid rent is then used. During this period (from January 1 to March 31), do not pay rent, as the landlord uses the prepaid rent.
What can the landlord require when moving out?
As a general rule, your landlord can only demand that you hand over the lease in the same condition as when you took it over, with the exception of ordinary wear and tear. Therefore, the landlord cannot demand that you hand over the property better than when you moved in. If you got the property freshly painted, it should also be painted when you vacate it.
However, please note that the rental law was amended on July 1, 2015. This means that the rules that you must hand over the property in the same condition as you got it (with the exception of wear and tear) only apply, if your lease is concluded after July 1, 2015.
Why choose BOLANDO?
At BOLANDO we are experts in tenancy law. We help hundreds of tenants every month and have a 98% success rate. Our concept is simple and fair; we always offer a free assessment of your case. If the case has potential, we can manage it for you. In managing your case, we represent you to the landlord. We will initially try to reach a settlement with the landlord. If the landlord disputes our claim, we will submit the case to the authorities. You only pay a percentage of the amount we win for you, or of the total expense you avoid having to pay. If we make no money for you, or we get no savings, it will cost you nothing. That way, you can start a case without risk but with professional help.
How can the landlord lose the right to claim money for repairs?
For leases concluded after July 1, 2015, landlords who rent more than one residential property must adhere to certain specific rules. Some of the rules must be complied with, even if the lease was signed before the rules were amended on July 1, 2015.
If the rules are not complied with, the landlord loses the right to claim money for repairs and thus also withholding of the deposit. These rules indicate that the landlord must:
• hold an inspection before moving in, as well as prepare a move-in report
• Have a relocation inspection when moving out, a report on the relocation inspection and a final statement of what expenses the landlord has accrued for repairs.
Are you unsure of your rights?
BOLANDO are experts in the Danish Rental Law. You can always get a free assessment from our legal advisers.
Facts about us
Moving in – before moving in
The landlord must hold a move-in inspection before the tenant moves into the home. If the landlord has not done so, the landlord usually loses the right to claim for repairs. This means that the landlord must repay your deposit and cannot send a settlement.
For moving in, it is important that you take pictures of the entire property. In particular, damages and defects. Write it all down! Within 14 days of moving in, you must send a defects list to the landlord. In the list of deficiencies, you must indicate what deficiencies you have found. Finally, attach the pictures that you have taken. It is important that you submit the list within 14 days of moving in.
Vacating – when you move out.
When you have ended the lease, the landlord must have a vacating inspection within 14 days of the relocation day. You must be advised of this inspection at least seven days before the inspection takes place. It is important to note here that the vacancy date is from the day the landlord becomes aware that you have left the property.
Typically, this will be when you hand in the keys to the landlord. But it does not have to be from the fact that you have handed in the keys to the landlord. What matters is that the landlord knows that you have moved. It is therefore important to write to the landlord when you have moved. That way you can prove that the landlord has been informed.
What happens if the landlord holds the vacating inspection later than 14 days after the relocation or advises me late?
If the landlord holds the inspection later than 14 days after the day of departure, he will forfeit the right to charge for making repairs.
The landlord also loses the right to charge for repairs if he informs you later than seven days before the evacuation inspection is held. However, it may be agreed that a shorter notice should be given. For example, if you are called in to the evacuation vision two days before the inspection and you still attend, it is considered an implied acceptance.
Moving out report
It is important to note that the landlord must also prepare a report on the evacuation inspection. Here, the landlord must indicate what damage has been found during the inspection.
The landlord can give you the report on the same day that the evacuation inspection takes place. You are not required to accept it. You are not required to sign it either.
If you refuse to sign, the landlord must send it to you within 14 days after the evacuation inspection has been held. We always recommend that you do not sign if you disagree with the content of the report. Take a picture of it and state that you refuse to sign.
What happens if the landlord does not submit the relocation report within 14 days?
If you refuse to sign the report, the landlord must send it to you within 14 days of the inspection date. If the landlord fails to send it within the time limit, he will forfeit the right to claim money for repairs, which means the landlord will have to repay your entire deposit. Therefore, he will not be able to demand that you pay for repairs.
What is a moving statement and what is the significance of my deposit?
Once your landlord has held the relocation check, he must prepare a relocation statement. It is important to note that the relocation statement is not the same as the relocation report. As mentioned earlier, a relocation report is a status of the relocation inspection itself, where the landlord notes any issues. This report forms the basis for the repairs to be done. Once the repairs have been completed, the landlord must make a final statement, which is called the relocation statement.
In the relocation statement, the landlord must state exactly what work has been carried out. For example, if money was spent repairing a stove because a button has fallen off, the landlord must, for example, write “broken button on stove”.
If the landlord has spent money on craftsmen, he must note what these craftsmen are used for and the hours used.
We often find that landlords add too much to the inventory by not complying with the specific requirements. If your landlord has written records on the statement that he cannot disclose or that is inconsistent with the relocation report, he may lose the right to claim money for the various items that he cannot confirm.
Are you unsure of your rights?
Do you have any doubts about your rights as a tenant in Denmark? Do you think your landlord is cheating you? Get a free and non-binding assessment of your case. If the case has potential, we can offer to manage it for you on a no-win-no-fee basis. You only pay a percentage of the amount we win for you, or of the expense you avoid having to pay.