Last Month's Rent

Don't assume that the deposit will cover the last month's rent unless the landlord agrees.

A landlord may want you to pay a sum of money called “last month’s rent” before you move in as a form of insurance against your leaving without giving the proper amount of notice. If you’ve paid for the last month in a payment clearly labeled “last month’s rent,” you obviously don’t have to pay for the last month. But if that's not the case,    and you want to use the deposit for the last month’s rent, you need to ask the landlord and get his okay in writing.  It's a risky move to assume you can skip paying your last month’s rent, figuring that the landlord will just take it out of your deposit.Here's why:

  • Forcing the landlord to deplete the deposit to cover rent leaves him with less money to use should he need to make repairs or replace missing items in your unit. Even if you leave the place spotless, your landlord won’t appreciate being manipulated this way. Don’t expect a good reference when your next landlord asks about you as a tenant.â
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