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Security Deposit

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BUSINESS
By George B. Laurent | November 28, 1993
"I returned the keys when my lease was up, but the landlord has ignored my calls and hasn't returned my security deposit.""My tenant moved without proper notice, but is demanding the return of his security deposit."Questions and complaints about security deposits are among the most common. Almost every landlord requires a security deposit, and most tenants are concerned about not getting it all back.According to Maryland law, a security deposit is money, usually equal to one month's rent, which is taken in advance to protect the landlord from lost rent or physical damage.
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BUSINESS
By Jamie Smith Hopkins, The Baltimore Sun | October 14, 2012
Online listings offered the Northeast Baltimore home for rent at a bargain price. The problem? It's not for rent — it's for sale. And the owners had nothing to do with those ads. This sort of scam proliferates on websites and in rental advertisers, perpetrated by con artists who want to separate renters from their security deposits. Real estate agent Rusty Miller, who represents the owners of the Cedmont home, said his office has fielded more than 100 calls and emails in the past 11/2 months from people interested in renting it — and who fortunately did enough poking around to find his name.
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BUSINESS
May 31, 1998
Dear Mr. Azrael:I'm having a nightmare problem with a condo that I rented out through the Coast Guard.The tenant (and child) moved out last month, and left me with around $5,000 worth of damages (per estimates I've gotten from contractors).I now have no rental income.My real estate agent can't even list it in the horrible condition it is in -- stained carpets, a hole in the porcelain bowl of the toilet, burn marks through a towel rack, holes in the wall, a sliding glass door that needs to be replaced, etc.I would appreciate any help you might be able to give.
BUSINESS
By Eileen Ambrose, The Baltimore Sun | September 23, 2011
For Eddie Germino, being unemployed for a time last year worked to his advantage in a dispute with his Maryland landlord. Germino, 27, had moved out of the house where he had lived with other students. Now he was trying to get his security deposit back. "Since I had so much free time," he says, "I was able to do all the legal research and make all the calls and write all the letters. " And his efforts paid off. A court ordered the landlord earlier this year to pay Germino $2,700 — three times his original deposit.
BUSINESS
October 25, 1998
Dear Mr. Azrael:You stated [in a previous column] that the security deposit [for an apartment] must be kept in a separate bank account for the tenant and returned within 30 days with a 4 percent interest per year.Are you quoting Maryland law?Most banks, including mine (Columbia Bank), consider an account dormant if no new transactions occur during the year, and only have an interest rate of 2.47 percent, yielding 2.50 percent.Do you suggest the security deposit be placed into a 12-month certificate of deposit?
NEWS
By Larry Carson | April 19, 2009
A public dispute between the Grassroots Crisis Intervention Center and its landlord over a $4,834.80 security deposit has been settled before going to trial, both sides confirmed. Grassroots, which argued that it should get the entire amount, got $4,000, and Bruce Taylor, who rented a house at his family's former psychiatric hospital to the nonprofit while its new building was under construction, kept the rest. Taylor's family operated the former Taylor Manor Psychiatric Hospital, now run by Sheppard Pratt.
NEWS
By Nancy A. Youssef and Nancy A. Youssef,SUN STAFF | September 23, 1999
A 29-year-old Columbia woman cheated eight potential townhouse renters out of their security deposits, collecting more than $10,000 in less than two months, Howard County police charged yesterday.Police said the woman put several advertisements to rent a townhouse in the 5100 block of Columbia Road in the Howard County Times in August. The ads listed different telephone numbers and numbers of bedrooms, varying from three to four. In at least one ad, an asking price of $1,300 a month was listed.
NEWS
By Marina Sarris and Marina Sarris,Staff Writer | August 4, 1993
State Del. Leslie E. Hutchinson knowingly gave her landlord a bad $1,500 check drawn on an empty bank account belonging to her uncle's campaign committee, her attorney confirmed yesterday.But, lawyer Richard M. Karceski said, the Essex lawmaker never intended the check to be cashed."It was her understanding it was a closed account at the time she wrote the check," he said, but "it was never intended to be a check. It was never intended to be a negotiable instrument. It was a promise that the rent would be paid."
BUSINESS
July 5, 1998
A few weeks ago I addressed the concerns of landlord who sustained damage to her property from a tenant. The suggestions made to her -- and other landlords -- for future reference were to carefully check a prospective tenant's references and credit history, as well as to require a reasonable security deposit for protection.Well, the mailbag received a scolding from Charles Linkowich, who suggested that investigating tenants offers no guarantee that it will prevent a rental unit from being "destroyed" by them.
BUSINESS
By Eileen Ambrose, The Baltimore Sun | September 23, 2011
For Eddie Germino, being unemployed for a time last year worked to his advantage in a dispute with his Maryland landlord. Germino, 27, had moved out of the house where he had lived with other students. Now he was trying to get his security deposit back. "Since I had so much free time," he says, "I was able to do all the legal research and make all the calls and write all the letters. " And his efforts paid off. A court ordered the landlord earlier this year to pay Germino $2,700 — three times his original deposit.
NEWS
By Larry Carson | April 19, 2009
A public dispute between the Grassroots Crisis Intervention Center and its landlord over a $4,834.80 security deposit has been settled before going to trial, both sides confirmed. Grassroots, which argued that it should get the entire amount, got $4,000, and Bruce Taylor, who rented a house at his family's former psychiatric hospital to the nonprofit while its new building was under construction, kept the rest. Taylor's family operated the former Taylor Manor Psychiatric Hospital, now run by Sheppard Pratt.
NEWS
By LAURA VOZZELLA | November 12, 2006
One day you've got a mansion, a driver, a primo gig. The next: "No house, no car, no job." That's how Bob Ehrlich summed up his situation on the radio a couple days after his Election Day defeat. It's not as bleak as it sounds. For one thing, the Ehrlichs made sure they didn't get used to the "artificial life" of Government House. "The big joke around here is we have great chefs and I live on energy bars and Rice Krispies," the governor told The Junkies on WHFS Friday. Which isn't to say Ehrlich doesn't appreciate the stately digs where his family spent the last four years.
BUSINESS
August 24, 2003
Many tenants as well as landlords don't know that Maryland law imposes strict obligations on handling security deposits on residential leases. A landlord who fails to comply with the law may be liable to the tenant for up to three times the security deposit withheld plus reasonable attorney's fees. Here are some frequently asked questions about security deposits: What is the maximum amount a landlord can charge as a security deposit on a residential lease? A security deposit cannot exceed two months' rent per dwelling unit, regardless of the number of tenants.
NEWS
By GREGORY KANE | August 25, 2002
JAMES KRAMON gets a slight twinkle in his eye when he tells about his experience as an assistant U.S. attorney. "One of my responsibilities was prosecuting lawyers," Kramon said, not bothering to conceal the smile on his face. "I hold my colleagues to high standards." So you figure this Kramon guy is not your ordinary lawyer. He delighted in prosecuting other attorneys and now, as if that weren't enough, he's written a book about his profession. What's it called? Why, You Don't Need a Lawyer, of course.
NEWS
By Walter F. Roche Jr. and Walter F. Roche Jr.,SUN STAFF | July 30, 2002
When Peter Kasprzyk and several other students from Poland and Slovakia arrived in Harford County in late June to work for the McDonald's restaurant chain, they said they'd been told they would make a lot of money, "more money than you could imagine." But Kasprzyk couldn't buy an item from the dollar menu with his first paycheck. It was zero. That's because he and four fellow students were being docked for $2,000 monthly rent on a two-bedroom apartment they share in Abingdon that normally goes for $750 in a longer-term lease.
NEWS
By Lisa Goldberg and Lisa Goldberg,SUN STAFF | August 10, 2001
A former Columbia woman who sublet the same townhouse to more than a half-dozen different couples, singles and roommate groups but later pulled out of each agreement - and kept their security deposits - was sentenced yesterday to six months in prison. Traci Guzman Hall, 30, pleaded guilty in June 2000 as part of a plea arrangement to one count of felony theft stemming from a series of rental agreements made during July and August 1999, all for the same townhouse in the 5100 block of Columbia Road.
BUSINESS
June 28, 1998
Dear Mr. Azrael:I have tenants who have given me only two weeks' notice to leave my rental unit. My rental agreement requires 30 days' written notice for a month-to-month lease.Rent is due on the first of the month. They stayed in the rental until the fourth of the month before moving. They did not pay rent for that month.My question is, can I charge them for the full month's rent and deduct that amount from their security deposit? There is no provision in my rental agreement for prorated rent.
NEWS
By Patrick Gilbert and Patrick Gilbert,Evening Sun Staff | May 16, 1991
Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke has rescinded a short-lived administration policy that would have required community organizations to pay a security deposit on wooden booths and stages borrowed from the city for neighborhood festivals.The mayor announced the policy change yesterday, saying that many neighborhood organizations had expressed concerns about being able to afford the security deposit."We didn't realize that such a modest cost would become such a major burden on neighborhoods," the mayor said.
BUSINESS
July 2, 2000
Dear Mr. Azrael: I own a condo, which has had three different tenants in the last four years. The condo is 14 years old and was occasionally used by members of my family during business trips mainly as a "bedroom" for the first 10 years. Last month, I made a visit to the condo for the first time since it had been rented. It has been unoccupied since January. To my horror, the condo was in poor condition with some very visible damage. I immediately called the agent who was handling the unit and told her to take it off the market.
NEWS
By Nancy A. Youssef and Nancy A. Youssef,SUN STAFF | September 23, 1999
A 29-year-old Columbia woman cheated eight potential townhouse renters out of their security deposits, collecting more than $10,000 in less than two months, Howard County police charged yesterday.Police said the woman put several advertisements to rent a townhouse in the 5100 block of Columbia Road in the Howard County Times in August. The ads listed different telephone numbers and numbers of bedrooms, varying from three to four. In at least one ad, an asking price of $1,300 a month was listed.
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