• Go to page :
  • 1 2 3
  • Text Only
As a landlord and knowing the judges in my area, you would be on the hook and this is a lock for the landlord. You showed the "pictures" to a "professional estimator and contractor", and he gave you a quote without physically seeing the damage? I wouldn't allow a tenant's contractor to work on my property. I have contractors I work with that I can rely on that know my properties.

It seems like the general opinion is Option #1 (let's leave aside the question whether this is covered by Lease or not).

My question - what is the downside of Option #2? There is some hassle and fee involved but there is also possibility of the small claims judge siding with me and asking Landlord (Property Management company) to pay back some of the money along with punitive damages (CA 1950.5(l)). Any possibility of negative impact to credit history?

Thoughts? Any experience?

For reference:
1. Pay the full amount and be done with it.
2. Pay the full amount and then sue in small claims court to recover the extra/unjustified amount

SUCKISSTAPLES said:   If I scratch someone's car I can get a $6 tube of touch up paint and do a good job repairing it-

No you can't. If you could, you'd be rich. Like a guy around here that does paintless dent repair. Supposed to be making $500,000 a year.

CptSavAHo said:   Also, you kept mentioning 'waiting for it to go to collections', that most likely can't happen until you're sued and a judgement rendered.

I am looking into this. I would be willing to fight the charge in court if it's not going to impact my credit history. If I lose, I will pay the full amount.

How does the landlord know you did it?

MorrisBoy said:   It seems like the general opinion is Option #1 (let's leave aside the question whether this is covered by Lease or not).

My question - what is the downside of Option #2? There is some hassle and fee involved but there is also possibility of the small claims judge siding with me and asking Landlord (Property Management company) to pay back some of the money along with punitive damages (CA 1950.5(l)). Any possibility of negative impact to credit history?

Thoughts? Any experience?

For reference:
1. Pay the full amount and be done with it.
2. Pay the full amount and then sue in small claims court to recover the extra/unjustified amount

Seriously ? You're going to pay the bill then sue the landlord based on your argument the bill is too high?

Unless you obtain discovery showing they paid only $xxx to repair it and provided you an inflated estimate , just to fleece you, don't count on getting anything . Of course the ll may just settle to get rid of your annoyance

I'm just another idiot posting on FW but I don't see how this isn't car insurance related. You hit someone's property. If the landlord had half a brain he would ask for your car insurance info. I'd pay what he is asking. If he files an insurance claim you will pay way more in premiums in the long run.

Is it out of the realm of possibility the LL contacts the police and says it was a hit and run or that you refuse to give insurance info when this is clearly a property damage situation?

It sounds to me that through the LL's ignorance he is letting you off easy. The longer you string this out the more time you give him to post of FW and get adice to sue you/contact police/file insurance claim etc...

For some reason it sounds to me you think that the LL can only pick one option when he has two. One, this is security deposit claim and the other car insurance claim. Nothing says he can't do both.

You're not thinking the big picture here. But what do I know...

PS
You hit a balcony. How do you know what is cosmetic or not?

Were there any signs posted saying "LOW CLEARANCE" if not, maybe the landlord was negligent.

atikovi said:   Were there any signs posted saying "LOW CLEARANCE" if not, maybe the landlord was negligent.

Does a driver not have a responsibility not to hit a fuc*ing building?

Counter sue for his apartment hitting you truck... its America, anything is possible.

If you could get your estimate from in person instead of from pictures, that might be better.

saladdin said:   atikovi said:   Were there any signs posted saying "LOW CLEARANCE" if not, maybe the landlord was negligent.

Does a driver not have a responsibility not to hit a fuc*ing building?


I'm assuming the OP was on a driveway not on the sidewalk or lawn. Just entered the parking garage at the mall for dinner and a sign said, LOW CLEARANCE, and had a steel bar suspended from chains so any over height vehicles would hit that before the building.

If the OP's truck could have hit it, why couldn't somebody else have done the damage earlier that day with another truck?

jerosen said:   Al3xK said:   jerosen said:   Its damages done by the tenant to the property. "the property" isn't going to be defined only by the unit the tenant rented but will include the entire complex.

I think this line is the crux of the confusion. I believe it actually is defined explicitly by a unit, along with your renters insurance specifically covering the unit only.


If what you're saying is right, alternatively couldn't damage with an unknown source to the roof of another unit be taken out of everyone's security deposit since they can't pin it on one person?


Where would it say in writing that security deposit ONLY applies to the interior of your unit?

I don't think that that the CA law would limit deposit use to cover only the confines of the interior of your rental. Does it say that?
And I don't imagine landlords would write the lease in a way that would limit deposit uses.

But its not reasonable to charge someone for damages with an unknown source. However here the source of the damage is known and the OP admits to it.


Jerosen, over and over, you are engaging in fallacious reasoning. The specific fallacy is the "negative proof" fallacy. If you have a position you wish to support, it is your duty to provide an adequate basis to support your conclusion. These, "clearly X is true, prove me wrong" arguing is pure horsehockey for petes sake. Fallacious sophistry is strictly for the birds my friend. If you believe California law supports your position regarding damage to the balcony, find a specific court case and/or statute on point please my friend.

* I would sue the landlord for failure to return your security deposit. I think you will win on the grounds that the truck damage is not related to your tenancy. I believe in California the landlord will be ordered to pay a $500 fine.
* The damage by the truck should be covered by your car insurance. Tell your car insurance company to deal with it.

When you damage your own property, you can exercise Fatwallet principles to save money on the repair.

When you damage someone else's property, expect to pay full retail.

This is the way it works, there is no around it unless you don't care about your credit score and being sued. This guy can very easily ding your credit most likely since he probably ran a credit check on you before you moved into the place. Just pay the bill and drive carefully. Be glad the truck company isn't asking you for money as well. Or are they?

FinancialAnalyst said:   When you damage your own property, you can exercise Fatwallet principles to save money on the repair.

When you damage someone else's property, expect to pay full retail.

This is the way it works, there is no around it

That sums it up

1) I'm still not understanding how you hit a balcony with a vehicle, but just to humor me, let's say it's instead of the balcony, it's the decorative fountain out front. Most people would avoid it, those that don't, pay.

2) Not sure how dirty you have to leave a place to need a $200 cleaning fee?? I've never paid over $40, as I do my due diligence to make sure I left it as I found it.

Maybe #2 is the reason he's not giving you any slack on #1.

Most likely, the landlord will keep your money and not fix the damage. Don't pay anything, and wait to be sued or collected. In court, the judge usually wants to see around 3 estimates and pick the middle one. You will most like pay less in court.

Do you even have car insurance at all? Your car insurance should cover this...

TheDealMaker said:   Most likely, the landlord will keep your money and not fix the damage. Don't pay anything, and wait to be sued or collected. In court, the judge usually wants to see around 3 estimates and pick the middle one. You will most like pay less in court.

Do you even have car insurance at all? Your car insurance should cover this...


My ignorant guess is OP was concerned about security deposit and never considered car insurance claim. But the insurance claim is 100x worse then the silly deposit problem. I really think OP thought he would get out of paying by some loophole and never considered this a "property damage car insurance claim" type of thing.

I'll just reiterate, a half dumb LL would go the car insurance angle. That's where the money is. Guaranteed pay out at full retail repair price while dinging the OP's CLUE report and, I would guess, pretty good chance of winning any court case.

But I'm am idiot, SIS is the smart one of the family so I'd follow any and all advice he gives.

i need everyone to humor me here. just ask yourself, do we think a security deposit covers anything and everything, or do we think there might be limits?
If we can agree there are limits, ask yourself whether it would be appropriate for a security deposit to cover each of the following scenarios:
tenant is moving out, and:
a) poured paint all over the carpet in his apartment.
b) damaged the exterior of the building, which he did not have exclusive possession over, per the terms of the lease
c) damaged the exterior of landlord's house, across the street
d) damaged landlords car
e) owes landlord a $500 gambling debt

we can all perhaps agree that the security deposit should come out of A, but not E. It is up to OP to discover the truth of the matter regarding the other scenarios.
Brad Majors is right that you can sue if the security deposit is wrongfully withheld, such as if it was a gambling debt. Some jurisdictions call for treble damages in cases of security deposits wrongfully withheld.

BradMajors said:   * I would sue the landlord for failure to return your security deposit. I think you will win on the grounds that the truck damage is not related to your tenancy. I believe in California the landlord will be ordered to pay a $500 fine.
* The damage by the truck should be covered by your car insurance. Tell your car insurance company to deal with it.


If he had hit it with anything other than a u haul type truck the first argument might hold, its what I was wondering at the start.

Car insurance 90% of the time, including credit card rental insurance, specifically excludes moving trucks.

Op asked whether to pay then dispute, or refuse to pay and see if its sent to collections . he did not present the question of whether $300 of the security deposit has been correctly held for this Damage. Indeed this may be a separate property damage issue which is properly resolved outside of the apt deposit .

Regardless of whether the $300 is being properly withheld from his deposit for this Damage, op needs to pay the full retail cost to repair it. And it's going to exceed $300 whether using his cheap guy or ll approved contractor .

Since you admitted you did it, clearly $1600 does not seem unreasonable for this type of repair. I personally would pay it, and make sure you get a bill that states paid in full. You have no idea once they begin the repair if they will find more extensive damage.

What happened to the posted picture? Looked like the truck just scraped against the balcony. I'm no expert but do watch the DIY shows. Just need a bucket of stucco and half hour labor to fill the scratches, and the next day a bucket of paint and another half hour to paint. $100 tops. Landlord probably already has a full time maintenance man so it wouldn't cost him any additional labor.

WHERED THE PICTURES GO!?!?!?!

MorrisBoy said:   It seems like the general opinion is Option #1 (let's leave aside the question whether this is covered by Lease or not).

My question - what is the downside of Option #2? There is some hassle and fee involved but there is also possibility of the small claims judge siding with me and asking Landlord (Property Management company) to pay back some of the money along with punitive damages (CA 1950.5(l)). Any possibility of negative impact to credit history?

Thoughts? Any experience?

For reference:
1. Pay the full amount and be done with it.
2. Pay the full amount and then sue in small claims court to recover the extra/unjustified amount
If you do #2, expect to lose not only the lawsuit (your payment will count as "accord and satisfaction", a settlement of the issue), but also the time spent preparing for court and your court costs. The minute the judge hears that, your case will be dismissed.

You're not going to get punitive damages. Sorry, that's just not going to happen. You damaged your landlord's property. The only legal question here is whether your security deposit covers the exterior of your apartment, and I simply can't imagine that it doesn't cover that, in spite of the sophistry people are floating here. It'd certainly cover things like damage you inadvertently did to other apartments. Say you're a second-story apartment whose toilet backed up and did water damage to the apartment below, for example--that wouldn't come out of the first-floor tenant's security deposit. That would come out of yours. I don't even think there's much of a legal issue in your favor on that front; in any event, since it's a potentially legitimate claim on the landlord's part, don't expect to get a bonanza out of hitting your own apartment and doing $1,600 of damages with your U-Haul.

Regarding the people claiming the landlord should go through the OP's auto insurance--auto insurance is there to protect you, the driver, not the people you hit. People you hit have no legal obligation to go through your insurance--they can, quite legally and legitimately, sue you directly for damages instead. It's the OP's responsibility to contact his own insurance company if he wants them to cover it. Frankly, that's probably the route to go, though I imagine that claim will be denied, too, unless the OP has comprehensive. Most other insurance policies won't cover driving a rental vehicle.

If you took out the insurance on the rental truck, then go through that and avoid all of this, but if you didn't, and you don't have comprehensive insurance, the strong odds are you're on the hook completely.

Actually most auto insurance does cover rental vehicles like rental cars( just not moving trucks ).

And it wouldn't be the comprehensive coverage that came into play. This is CA so it would be the property damage liability portion of the policy.

Comprehensive would cover damage the truck itself sustained ( again , assuming it actually covered moving trucks. )

Coming soon to FWF...

"I declined insurance and hit a balcony now Uhaul wants to charge me $1300 in repairs..."

Coming soon to FWF...

"I hit a balcony and my landlord's charging me $1,600 for it. I don't want my auto insurance rates to go up. Should I stiff him?"

you dent a new car doesn't mean you have to buy a new car for that person. get 3 quotes, and average the fix and you pay that amount. at least this is how it's done with cars in most states, so i assume the same can be done with house.

i think your car insurance also cover rental, check into that too to help pay the bill.

goodluck.

1 is the way to go, in the long run.

If you don't place a value on your time and energy, then you can go with any other option.

if your landlord can't prove you how it came to $1600 and don't show you the itemized detail, than that is a rip off itself. in this case YOU NEED TO TAKE A LEGAL FiGHT.

Just cos they report to collection, doesn't mean you have no option.

don't let them treat you like a POS just cos they think you are.

if no itemized details, NO payment, simple as that, FIGHT cos you have case

atikovi said:   Were there any signs posted saying "LOW CLEARANCE" if not, maybe the landlord was negligent.

Great point! And in case OP got hurt, then check if there were signs on the property that said "If you ram into the building chances are you will get hurt, so please don't do it". if there were no such signs posted I would sue for not posting this warning also!

And while we are at it and to double dip I would recommend suing the truck's manufacturer also for not posting this warning on the dashboard.

You sound very litigious.

Ignore some really bad advice here. You caused the damage, do the right thing and pay it whether out of pocket, your deposit, or insurance. You will sleep better at night too.

WorkerAnt said:   you dent a new car doesn't mean you have to buy a new car for that person. get 3 quotes, and average the fix and you pay that amount. at least this is how it's done with cars in most states, so i assume the same can be done with house.

i think your car insurance also cover rental, check into that too to help pay the bill.

goodluck.


Absolutely, 100% stunningly wrong. In most jurisdictions, the person you hit has a right to take their car to be repaired wherever they want. They don't have to get multiple estimates at all. The only check on this power is going to court and fighting something that is completely ridiculous like a $10,000 bill for a 15 year old Camry.

In this case, OP hit a building with a truck. Only an unreasonable person would say $1,600 is unreasonable.

FinancialAnalyst said:   In this case, OP hit a building with a truck.

NO, he SCRAPED a building. Pictures were posted earlier but have been removed for some reason.

PS, I have to go in for jury duty tomorrow. If I was deliberating this case, I'd give the landlord no more than a few hundred without a verifiable written invoice from a licensed contractor.

atikovi said:   FinancialAnalyst said:   In this case, OP hit a building with a truck.

NO, he SCRAPED a building. Pictures were posted earlier but have been removed for some reason.

PS, I have to go in for jury duty tomorrow. If I was deliberating this case, I'd give the landlord no more than a few hundred without a verifiable written invoice from a licensed contractor.


Thanks Matlock.

Its a tough one, and the judge will matter. If he sues you for the money, and you counter sue, thats the best situation based on dealing with something close to this once. Because both the proof against you, and the proof on your counter claim are on him. Small claims court leaves the plantiff with all proof, even on a counter suit.

If it were me, I care a ton about my credit, and would get stressed out waiting. I would just do number #5, however if you think they will sue you, let them and go that road with a counter claim.

You damaged someone else's property! YOU are responsible! But obviously you aren't responsible for your actions at all. You need to take a honest look at your values and morals.



Disclaimer: By providing links to other sites, FatWallet.com does not guarantee, approve or endorse the information or products available at these sites, nor does a link indicate any association with or endorsement by the linked site to FatWallet.com.

Thanks for visiting FatWallet.com. Join for free to remove this ad.

TRUSTe online privacy certification

While FatWallet makes every effort to post correct information, offers are subject to change without notice.
Some exclusions may apply based upon merchant policies.
© 1999-2014