Legal Question in Real Estate Law in North Carolina

Renters Rights Concerning Return of Security Deposit

In the state of North Carolina, what is considered normal wear and tear, specifically, of a residential rental property which the tenant is responsible for repair of upon the termination of the lease? What is the landlord responsible for repairing and what is the tenant responsible for? How long does the tenant have to dispute the deposit after the lease is terminated?

In the case that a renter did not sign a lease, can the landlord hold out on the security deposit?

Is the landlord responsible for checking the condition of the rental property when a person terminates the lease, but other renters remain? (i.e.- there are three people, one moves out and two are left) If the landlord does not check the property, are the remaining tenants responsible for the damage caused by the formar tenant?

Asked on 1/04/00, 8:33 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Kevin Byrnes Kevin P. Byrnes, Attorney at Law

Re: Renters Rights Concerning Return of Security Deposit

Normal wear and tear varies on a case by case basis

but if there're no stains on the walls or carpet, a

normal repaint and carpet clean would be landlord's

responsibility absent specific lease provision. As

far as the responsibilities of each party, the

question is too broad to answer in this forum. My best

guess on the length of time within which to seek

refund of the security deposit without looking up

the statute, is 3 years, but I wouldn't take that

to the bank. The longer you wait, the fuzzier your chances. All tenants are jointly

and severally responsible for all the liability of

a lease, written or oral. If less than all tenants

are responsible for damage, loss of security, etc.,

the fight is between tenants not the tenant and landlord.

This is true regardless of when fewer than all the

tenants leave, unless the parties agree otherwise,


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Answered on 1/05/00, 5:47 pm

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