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Landlord refusing to return deposit, despite written agreement

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  1. #131

    Join Date
    Feb 2019
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    191

    Presumably it's only a criminal offence if the contract hasn't expired yet?

    If they are determined to hold your deposit, and you move out and keep the keys, couldn't they break in 1 day after contract finishes, and probably even bill you for the repairs?


  2. #132

    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Hong Kong
    Posts
    6,146
    Quote Originally Posted by ehayan
    Could I report to police, making a criminal case, If landlord keeps ignoring calls mails and messages, while holding the deposit even without disclosing how much was the damage?

    I used to talk to the Secretary of the landlord. Though kept asking co- inspection on the last day ir earlier, The Secretary kept asking me to leave the key to a real estate agent and the agent asked to do to the management office as he is out of HK. (Feeling not comfortable) but let the key to the management office and asked the Secretary and the agent to do inspection together anytime they want.

    No reply and got a WhatsApp message after 13 days, one day before the deposit return deadline, that they need 2 weeks for the repainting etc due to the bad condition, not from normal wear and tear. They took pictures of scratches in the store room but most of them could be easily removed after normal repainting for a new tenant.

    They were quite difficult and far away from cooperative so dropped email that let me know the additional cost from my obvious misusing. But another 3 weeks are passing and now the Secretary did not answer any call or message or mail. Even no reply to rental receipt issue Request....

    Afraid the guy had a plan to scam the whole from the beginning. In this case, could i report to police?

    Many thanks,

    Andy
    This is not a police matter. It's a matter before the courts.

  3. #133

    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    Hong Kong
    Posts
    6,146
    Quote Originally Posted by GentleGeorge
    Presumably it's only a criminal offence if the contract hasn't expired yet?

    If they are determined to hold your deposit, and you move out and keep the keys, couldn't they break in 1 day after contract finishes, and probably even bill you for the repairs?
    You have legal possession of the flat until you hand back the keys. If you are refusing to pay for rent and holding the keys then the landlord is more encouraged to come to a resolution with you.

    It's a game, and if you are trying to be nice, you'll be seen as a sucker and easy money to take, for the landlord.

  4. #134

    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Posts
    573
    Quote Originally Posted by MandM!
    You have legal possession of the flat until you hand back the keys. If you are refusing to pay for rent and holding the keys then the landlord is more encouraged to come to a resolution with you.

    It's a game, and if you are trying to be nice, you'll be seen as a sucker and easy money to take, for the landlord.
    Once the lease has expired and you have ended the lease by physically leaving the premises the owner is entitled to possession and that includes changing the locks and deducting the cost from your deposit.

    Alternatively, if you remain in possession then you are liable to continue paying rent at least until you surrender possession to the owner (possibly longer depending on circumstances) AND may also be liable for any additional losses which the owner may incur.

    (And, yes, I have had this explained to me by a HK lawyer specialising in tenancy matters.)

    If the amount is less than HK$50,000 Small Claims Court is the forum for making a claim. If larger, then the Lands Tribunal.

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