Under the Residential Tenancies Act, 2004 governing landlord and tenant rights and obligations in private leased housing, a landlord can refuse to return a deposit or a portion of a deposit in the following situations:
If a tenant has not given sufficient notice of their intention to leave,
If a tenant has left the property with unpaid bills or,
If a tenant has caused damage that is not due to regular wear and tear.
If your landlord has a good reason to hold a portion of your deposit, the balance should be refunded to you. For example, the landlord may not withhold your deposit because you hosted loud parties. However, if your contract prohibits loud parties or they create disruption and inconvenience to your neighbors, you may be evicted with due notice. The landlord cannot keep your deposit unfairly if you did not damage the property and paid your payments. If the landlord proceeds to refuse to return a deposit, you might inquire about his reasoning or a breakdown of the expenses incurred. You can also try negotiating with him; if that doesn’t work, you could seek assistance from the Residential Tenancies Board.
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