Suing a tenant for damages to the property depends on whether the lease is ongoing or the lease has ended. If the lease is ongoing, you’ve given the tenant 48 hours to come into the property, and you know there are some problems, you have the ability to go to the court for damage to the apartment. It’s a breach of the lease. You can also fix the items and charge the tenant and put it on the rent. The landlord/tenant code gives you both of those options.
If it’s after the lease has expired, you should go through the rental unit immediately, as soon as you gain possession, make note of whatever items are damaged, put them in a letter to the tenant along with the remainder of the security deposit – we call it a 20 day letter – and then go to the court and seek any past due rent and money for damages to the property. If you have any questions about how to get payment for damages to your property, please contact your local landlord/tenant attorney.
The law firm of Mattleman, Weinroth & Miller, P.C., is composed of experienced attorneys, versed in the legalities between tenant and landlord, throughout the state of Delaware. Please contact the office for a free initial consultation and get any questions answered.