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1. How to resolve the situation of the tenant and landlord not agreeing the amount to be deducted from the rental deposit (due to the disagreement on “reasonable satisfaction of the landlord”)?

It is rather common for a tenancy agreement to provide that the tenant shall deliver up possession of the premises upon the termination of the tenancy in a condition “to the reasonable satisfaction of the landlord” (with fair wear and tear excepted).

 

In law, there is no standard or determinative answer for what is meant by “reasonable satisfaction of the landlord” in this context.  The landlord and the tenant should, and certainly would the Court, exercise a degree of reasonableness and common sense in assessing whether the tenant is at fault.  Bearing in mind that the tenancy has already come to an end, the parties should carefully consider whether it is worthwhile and economically efficient to incur time and costs to dispute how much is to be deducted from the rental deposit.

 

In the absence of terms in the tenancy agreement stipulating the mechanism on how to resolve the differences, the tenant may have to resort to legal action to recover the rental deposit from the landlord in the case that negotiations between the parties fail.

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