I'm an expert on the law due to all the TV court shows I watch. I graduated summa cum laude from the Judge Joe Brown-J. Cheever Loophole TV Law and Beauty School. (It's a joke) Pro bono, here's advice about one of the toughest aspects of moving: getting that security deposit back.
First, take pictures. Take pix when you move into a rented house or apartment, and take a bunch of pix when you leave. It behooves you to show the move-in and move-out conditions of the rental. If the apartment had a new carpet upon taking up residence, when you vacate five years later, you do not owe the owners a new carpet. Five years of wear-and-tear is okay. Big stains are not.
I have been both a renter and a landlord. Both sides need to be fair. Many cases involve a tenant who leaves a huge mess, or the space filled with junk that needs to be hauled away. If you don't want to move that huge couch, or find an e-recycling facility for that broken washing machine, what makes you think your landlord wants to do it? Just because you went to grade school with the property owner, you'd be surprised how quickly old bonds break down. Don't “disrespect” your landlord. (By the way, Junk King charges for the size of the load you are removing. They have great rates for large or small pick ups. We'll haul away that couch for you.)
Most landlord/tenant deposit disputes can be avoided. Be reasonable, whichever side you are on. If you painted your bedroom black, and the landlord needs to repaint the area several times to bring it back to the move-in white, well, expect to get charged for painting. But normal wear and tear is just that. You aren't responsible to replace the old fridge with a new one. But if you left it full of lamb chops, and then the electrical service got turned off, come on. Show some responsibility. (By the way, Junk King hauls away the worst messes. The only thing we don't handle are hazardous materials.)
In the years spent as an unattorney, rarely does anyone come out the winner in these cases. Landlords counter sue bad tenants for damages, or bad landlords owe treble damages for being unresponsive. Check the laws in your state, and, if you are moving, take pictures of everything--moving in or out.
Remember, you needn't get stuck with a mess, or leave a mess. Call Junk King. We're fast, green, and we do all the work.