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Tips for Getting Your Security Deposit Back

When you rent a place to live, you provide the landlord with a security deposit. And if you didn't damage anything, you should get that money back.

Eric Raptosh Photography/Workbook Stock/Getty Images

Moving stinks. There's the hassle of packing, blackmailing friends to help you and trying to dig months of gunk out of the caulk in the shower. That doesn't even take into account the literal stink of moving: That particular aroma that you and your helpers will start emitting after a few hours of box moving and truck loading.

Then there's the less physical hassles of moving. Not only do you have to find a new place, but you have to wrap things up at your old one. That means getting together with your landlord and getting your security deposit back.

Your security deposit is that giant wad of cash (or nice-sized check) your landlord took from you when you moved in. Your landlord, or whoever manages the property, is supposed to hold the money until you move out. If you damaged something beyond normal what could be expected beyond normal use, the security deposit is there to cover its repair or replacement.

But here's the thing: If you didn't damage anything, you get that money back. Of course, like most things related to moving (Put stuff in boxes! Transport to a new location! Repay friends who helped with beer!) it's not always that simple.

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