I am not sure what merchandise you are speaking of here. Did the renters take appliances that came with the rental or light fixtures?
If so, this is a theft and should first and foremost be reported to local law enforcement. As to you retaining the security deposit as payment for stolen items you shouls consult an attorney.
Best of lucK!!!
Kawain Payne, Realtor
They will argue with you all they want but in the end if you have that on paper, signed and dated. it speaks volumes, if you decide to take them to small claims court..
If your tenant is renting a commercial property and property "merchandise" is stolen, that is an insurance issue, not a security deposit question.
The security deposit was given to you as a guarantee that the tenant would return the property to you in an equal condition as originally rented out, and to buffer the credit risk by giving the property to the tenant in the first place.
Real Estate Broker
Could you clarify your question?
Is this a commercial property?
What kind of rental contract?
What does your rental contract specify about it?
Is there a police report?
Is merchandise insured?
The Tenant is responsible for Insurance covering their posessions.
The Insurance that the OWNER gets is FIRE/LIABILITY Insurance.
You would probably be responsible if there were no locks on the doors.
If the Tenant moves out, because of the THEFT, but they leave the place in the same condition as when they moved in; then they would be entitled to their SECURITY DEPOSIT back.
If the THEFT was also a "break-in" and there was damage done to the doors or windows, that would not be the fault of the tenant. Your Insurance should cover those repairs.