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Deposit in a lease

Verified 01 janvier 2020 - Directorate for Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister)

Empty rental

The landlord may require the payment of a security deposit to cover possible failures of the tenant (unpaid rent or charges, completion of rental repairs...). The amount of the security deposit, its payment and its return are regulated by law.

Rent to be paid monthly

If the owner requires a security deposit, it must be indicated in the lease..

Its amount must not exceed 1 month rent, excluding charges.

  FYI : the amount of the security deposit cannot be increased (revised) during lease or lease renewal.

Rent payable in advance for a period exceeding 2 months

No security deposit can be claimed from the tenant if the rent is payable in advance for a period exceeding 2 months (rent paid quarterly for example).

However, if the tenant requests the benefit of the monthly rent payment, the landlord may require a security deposit.

The security deposit must be paid to the landlord at the time the lease is signed, directly by the tenant or through a third party, i.e.:

In the event of a cash payment, the tenant may request from the landlord, by any means, a receipt specifying that the amount remitted is remitted in respect of the security deposit.

Rules to be respected

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Apartment (shared accommodation)

Compliant site status

Time

At the end of the lease, the security deposit must be returned within a maximum period of 1 month. But its amount can be reduced by deductions or provision.

The deadline starts from the day the tenant returns the keys, who can hand them over:

  • in the hands of the owner or his agent (the real estate agent),
  • or by registered letter with request for notification of receipt.

Deductions

A deduction is the amount that the owner is entitled to keep. These may include, for example:

  • unpaid rent or charges,
  • costs related to damage or rental work.

The landlord must justify the withholding on the security deposit by providing the tenant with documents. Examples include: statements of places of entry and exit, photos, statement of bailiff, estimates or invoices, letter of complaint of unpaid rent remained unanswered.

Charges

If the charges are recoverable, the owner shall make a provisional account order. He can keep a reserve until the annual order of the accounts of the building. Provision must be made in support of supporting evidence.

It may not exceed 20 % of the amount of the security deposit.

The final adjustment and the return of the balance (net of deductions) must be made within one month of the final approval of the property accounts.

However, nothing prevents the tenant and the owner from immediately closing all accounts without waiting for the approval of the accounts of the condominium.

Non-compliant site status

Time

At the end of the lease, the security deposit must be returned within a maximum period of 2 months. But its amount can be reduced by deductions or provision.

The deadline starts from the day the tenant returns the keys, who can hand them over:

  • in the hands of the owner or his agent (the real estate agent),
  • or by registered letter with request for notification of receipt.

Deductions

A deduction is the amount that the owner is entitled to keep. These may include, for example:

  • unpaid rent or charges,
  • costs related to damage or rental work.

The landlord must justify the withholding on the security deposit by providing the tenant with documents. Examples include: statements of places of entry and exit, photos, statement of bailiff, estimates or invoices, letter of complaint of unpaid rent remained unanswered.

Charges

If the charges are recoverable, the owner shall make a provisional account order. He can keep a reserve until the annual order of the accounts of the building. Provision must be made in support of supporting evidence.

It may not exceed 20 % of the amount of the security deposit.

The final adjustment and the return of the balance (net of deductions) must be made within one month of the final approval of the property accounts.

However, nothing prevents the tenant and the owner from immediately closing all accounts without waiting for the approval of the accounts of the condominium.

House (individual accommodation)

Compliant site status

Time

At the end of the lease, the security deposit must be returned within a maximum period of 1 month. But the amount can be reduced by deductions.

The deadline starts from the day the tenant returns the keys, who can hand them over:

  • in the hands of the lessor or his agent (the real estate agent),
  • or by registered letter with request for notification of receipt.

Deductions

A deduction is an amount remaining to the lessor. These may include, for example:

  • unpaid rent or charges,
  • costs related to damage or rental work

The landlord must justify the withholding on the security deposit by providing the tenant with documents. This may include, for example, statements of places of entry and exit, photos, statement of bailiff, estimates or invoices, letter of complaint of unpaid rents not answered.

Non-compliant site status

Time

At the end of the lease, the security deposit must be returned within a maximum period of 2 months. But the amount can be reduced by deductions.

The deadline starts from the day the tenant returns the keys, who can hand them over:

  • in the hands of the lessor or his agent (the real estate agent),
  • or by registered letter with request for notification of receipt.

Deductions

A deduction is an amount remaining to the lessor. These may include, for example:

  • unpaid rent or charges,
  • costs related to damage or rental work

The landlord must justify the withholding on the security deposit by providing the tenant with documents. This may include, for example, statements of places of entry and exit, photos, statement of bailiff, estimates or invoices, letter of complaint of unpaid rents not answered.

Disputes against deductions

Challenge the bill for the refurbishment of his old dwelling

National Institute of Consumer Affairs (INC)

Tenant approach

If the security deposit is not returned within the prescribed time limit, the tenant must give notice to the owner to return the security deposit by registered letter with notice of receipt.

Request refund of unreturned security deposit

Directorate of Legal and Administrative Information (Dila) - Prime Minister

If the landlord refuses to repay the security deposit despite this, the tenant can initiate a conciliation procedure (optional and free step):

In the event of a failure to reach a settlement, disputes relating to the security deposit must be brought before the protection litigation judge within 3 years of the day on which the security deposit should have been paid.

Right to interest on late payment

In the event of late return of security deposit, interest on late payment shall be due to the tenant.

If no refund is made within the prescribed period, the security deposit due to the tenant shall be increased by an amount equal to 10% of the monthly rent (excluding charges) for each month of delay started.

This mark-up shall not apply if the delay is caused by the fact that the tenant has not transmitted to the lessor the address of his new home.

Furnished rental

The landlord may require the tenant to make a security deposit to cover any breach of his or her rental obligations (for example, the regularization of rents and charges or the performance of rental repairs).

Lease signed from 27 March 2014

Rent to be paid monthly

If the lessor requires the payment of a security deposit, its amount:

  • must be indicated in the lease,
  • must not exceed 2 months rent, excluding charges.

  FYI : the amount of the security deposit may not be subject to any ongoing review or renewal of the lease.

Rent payable in advance for a period exceeding 2 months

No security deposit can be claimed from the tenant if the rent is payable in advance for a period exceeding 2 months (rent paid quarterly for example).

However, if the tenant requests the benefit of the monthly rent payment, the landlord may require a security deposit.

Lease signed before March 27, 2014

The deposit amount is free.

It can be 1 or 2 months or even longer depending on what is provided for in the lease.

The security deposit must be paid to the landlord at the time the lease is signed, directly by the tenant or through a third party, i.e.:

In the event of a cash payment, the tenant may request from the landlord, by any means, a receipt specifying that the amount remitted is remitted in respect of the security deposit.

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"Collective" housing (example: condominium

Compliant site status

Time

At the end of the lease, the security deposit must be returned within a maximum period of 1 month. But its amount can be reduced by deductions or provision.

The deadline starts from the day the tenant returns the keys, who can hand them over:

  • in the hands of the owner or his agent (the real estate agent),
  • or by registered letter with request for notification of receipt.

Deductions

A deduction is the amount that the owner is entitled to keep. These may include, for example:

  • unpaid rent or charges,
  • costs related to damage or rental work.

The landlord must justify the withholding on the security deposit by providing the tenant with documents. Examples include: statements of places of entry and exit, photos, statement of bailiff, estimates or invoices, letter of complaint of unpaid rent remained unanswered.

Charges

If the charges are recoverable, the owner shall make a provisional account order. He can keep a reserve until the annual order of the accounts of the building. Provision must be made in support of supporting evidence.

It may not exceed 20 % of the amount of the security deposit.

The final adjustment and the return of the balance (net of deductions) must be made within one month of the final approval of the property accounts.

However, nothing prevents the tenant and the owner from immediately closing all accounts without waiting for the approval of the accounts of the condominium.

Non-compliant site status

Time

At the end of the lease, the security deposit must be returned within a maximum period of 2 months. But its amount can be reduced by deductions or provision.

The deadline starts from the day the tenant returns the keys, who can hand them over:

  • in the hands of the owner or his agent (the real estate agent),
  • or by registered letter with request for notification of receipt.

Deductions

A deduction is the amount that the owner is entitled to keep. These may include, for example:

  • unpaid rent or charges,
  • costs related to damage or rental work.

The landlord must justify the withholding on the security deposit by providing the tenant with documents. Examples include: statements of places of entry and exit, photos, statement of bailiff, estimates or invoices, letter of complaint of unpaid rent remained unanswered.

Charges

If the charges are recoverable, the owner shall make a provisional account order. He can keep a reserve until the annual order of the accounts of the building. Provision must be made in support of supporting evidence.

It may not exceed 20 % of the amount of the security deposit.

The final adjustment and the return of the balance (net of deductions) must be made within one month of the final approval of the property accounts.

However, nothing prevents the tenant and the owner from immediately closing all accounts without waiting for the approval of the accounts of the condominium.

"Individual" accommodation (example: flag

Compliant site status

Time

At the end of the lease, the security deposit must be returned within a maximum period of 1 month. But the amount can be reduced by deductions.

The deadline starts from the day the tenant returns the keys, who can hand them over:

  • in the hands of the lessor or his agent (the real estate agent),
  • or by registered letter with request for notification of receipt.

Deductions

A deduction is an amount remaining to the lessor. These may include, for example:

  • unpaid rent or charges,
  • costs related to damage or rental work

The landlord must justify the withholding on the security deposit by providing the tenant with documents. This may include, for example, statements of places of entry and exit, photos, statement of bailiff, estimates or invoices, letter of complaint of unpaid rents not answered.

Non-compliant site status

Time

At the end of the lease, the security deposit must be returned within a maximum period of 2 months. But the amount can be reduced by deductions.

The deadline starts from the day the tenant returns the keys, who can hand them over:

  • in the hands of the lessor or his agent (the real estate agent),
  • or by registered letter with request for notification of receipt.

Deductions

A deduction is an amount remaining to the lessor. These may include, for example:

  • unpaid rent or charges,
  • costs related to damage or rental work

The landlord must justify the withholding on the security deposit by providing the tenant with documents. This may include, for example, statements of places of entry and exit, photos, statement of bailiff, estimates or invoices, letter of complaint of unpaid rents not answered.

Tenant approach

If the security deposit is not returned within the prescribed time limit, the tenant must give notice to the owner to return the security deposit by registered letter with notice of receipt.

Request refund of unreturned security deposit

Directorate of Legal and Administrative Information (Dila) - Prime Minister

If the landlord refuses to repay the security deposit despite this, the tenant can initiate a conciliation procedure (optional and free step):

In the event of a failure to reach a settlement, disputes relating to the security deposit must be brought before the protection litigation judge within 3 years of the day on which the security deposit should have been paid.

Right to interest on late payment

In the event of late return of security deposit, interest on late payment shall be due to the tenant.

If no refund is made within the prescribed period, the security deposit due to the tenant shall be increased by an amount equal to 10% of the monthly rent (excluding charges) for each month of delay started.

This mark-up shall not apply if the delay is caused by the fact that the tenant has not transmitted to the lessor the address of his new home.