Students Win Dispute Over ‘So-Called’ Security Deposit

In November of last year, the Superior Court of Pennsylvania upheld a verdict that ruled against a landlord’s attempt to pressure individuals to enter into a lease arrangement or if they didn’t they risk losing their so-called “security deposit.” (E.S. Management v. Gao, 2017 Pa. Super. LEXIS 925).

Several foreign students from Carnegie Mellon University were seeking housing for the 2014-2015 academic year. The students, residing in China, asked a friend in Pittsburgh to look at an apartment that was available for rent from E.S. Management.

One of the students had an aunt who was residing in the United States and asked the aunt to wire $5,885 to E.S. Management in order to prevent the apartment from being rented to others. The students were presented a written lease for their review. According to the written lease, the security deposit due would equal one, not two, months of the rent due and the students would be responsible for the payment of utility charges for the apartment.

The students and the landlord could not agree upon the terms and conditions related to the payment of the utility charges, so, they notified E.S. Management they would not rent the apartment and asked to be reimbursed the security deposit wired to E.S. Management, less the nonrefundable application fee of $100, the opinion said. E.S. Management refused to so make the refund payment. The aunt who paid the security deposit initiated a suit against E.S. Management in the local magisterial district court. If you are a landlord it would beneficial for you to read the article and the findings by the court. For the full Story visit: