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Renter painted cabinets without permission - Landlord Forum thread 354433

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Renter painted cabinets without permission by Anonymous on September 28, 2017 @23:26

Basically, the lease they signed requires approval prior to painting the walls and requires walls to be returned to a neutral color--but doesn't specifically say anything about the cabinets. Renters asked me to stop by today to change some lights and I found that they had painted the stained hardwood cabinets cream and black.

Am I out of luck? Is there any way that this is considered damage that can be taken from their security deposit, or is there any way to prevent future crazy paint jobs?
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Re: Renter painted cabinets without permission by Anonymous on September 29, 2017 @07:47 [ Reply ]
Do you have any "before" pictures taken in the past few years, that would show how the cabinets looked before these tenants moved in ? Usually stained hardwood cabinets look really nice to most people, whereas painted ones, especially 2 toned ones, do not.
If you consider it "damage" you would need to send a letter to the tenants right now, telling them they did not have your permission to paint them, and they must somehow change them back to the original finish when they move out. Hopefully that letter will establish your position on the matter.
Then, when they move out, if they have not done anything to the cabinets, you will need to change them back, and then charge their deposit with the costs involved to do so. They won't be happy about that, but then it will be up to them to take you to court to get their deposit back.
Of course, you must change them back first, before you can deduct the expense out of their deposit. You would need to take several pictures of the currently painted, 2 tone cabinets, and also show the various stages of the paint removal process, and the final product, if you end up in court someday, and expect to win.
Re: Renter painted cabinets without permission by Anonymous on September 29, 2017 @10:35 [ Reply ]
You should get estimates to correct the damage asap. Then present the tenants the invoice for the repair for immediate payment. You will then have the funds to repair the cabinets at the end of the lease without deducting from the security deposit which may be needed for other unknown damage.

You can also work out a payment plan to be added to the rent each month if the time remaining on the lease is long. Full payment should be completed over the fewest months possible. If no payment is made, then your only option is to move forward with an eviction. Waiting until the lease is over to deduct from the security deposit may mean you have waived your rights to claim damage to the cabinets.
Re: Renter painted cabinets without permission by Katiekate (New York) on September 29, 2017 @11:38 [ Reply ]
I would send a letter to the tenant.

I would inform them of what days the contractor will be there to take the doors down and remove them for repair.

I would make it very clear that this was done by the tenant without permisssion. When the bill is presented to will require it to be paid in full along with the rent that month. No if, ands, or butts will be accepted.

I would also suggest that any other unauthorized work will be handled the same way..this could then have the potential to cause a lot of financial chaos for the tenant. Better answer for the tenant is ...don't do any unauthorized changes again. it
Re: Renter painted cabinets without permission by Anonymous on September 29, 2017 @11:41 [ Reply ]
Oh..I see it isn't just doors. So when the doors are ready to rehang...inform the tenant on what day the cabinets must be empty and the tenants need to remove themselves while the stripper chemicals are being used to take the paint off.

This is a big hassle for the tenants....but they did bring this on themselves.
Re: Renter painted cabinets without permission by Anonymous on September 29, 2017 @11:42 [ Reply ]
I hope you mad a BIG fuss when you saw this. I hope these tenants know from your reaction they did a BIG no-no.

Otherwise they may be shocked to find you handing them a bill to repair them.

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