Resources > Housing > Damage Deposit
A Damage or Security Deposit is money a tenant pays to a landlord before the start of a tenancy. A security deposit can’t be more than half of the first month’s rent. The landlord holds the money until the tenant moves out. When a tenancy ends, a landlord may claim the security deposit for unpaid rent, damage, extraordinary cleaning costs or other obligation of the tenant. Many people refer to this money as a damage deposit.
A pet damage deposit is money a tenant pays to a landlord before bringing a pet into a rental unit. A pet damage deposit collected between June 30, 2010 and July 31, 2014 can’t be more than half of a month’s rent. A pet damage deposit collected on or after August 1, 2014 can be up to one month’s rent. Existing tenants who have already paid a pet damage deposit cannot be asked to pay the increased amount. The landlord holds the money until the tenant moves out. When a tenancy ends, a landlord may claim the pet damage deposit for damage or cleaning costs the landlord suffers because of the tenant’s pet. Landlords cannot charge a pet damage deposit for tenants who rely on a service animal.