See page 25 on the CA Tenants renters book - http://www.dca.ca.gov/publications/landlordbook/catenant.pdf
The owner/landlord can require you to pay a security deposit equal to TWO MONTHS rent for an unfurnished unit (two-and-a-half if you have a waterbed), and a security deposit equal to THREE MONTHS rent for a furnished unit (three-and-a-half with waterbed). This would be IN ADDITION to first month's rent.
SO, while the landlord is requesting 1st and Last month's rent, plus a security deposit equal to one month's rent, this IS allowed so long as the contract states you are paying FIRST MONTH'S rent plus a security deposit equal to TWO MONTHS rent. It's all in the language of the contract...
As far as the condition, I echo what has been said before me. Be concerned if the landlord refuses to make the unit "satisfactory" up front, because it's only going to get worse. Also, if you do decide to move in regardless, DOCUMENT EVERYTHING on move in. Don't make it into "he said, she said" when you are having to go to court to get your security deposit back.
Alan Kurpiewski, RealtorÂ®
CA BRE 01912043
Hector R. Gastelum
Realty Executives Dillon
Take all of the advice offered and know there are legal avenues you can pursue. Look at http://californiarentersrights.org. There may be legal hotlines you can call as well.
Best of luck,
Mark & Kari Shea
Shea Real Estate
National Association of Realtors
CA DRE License 01713506
On a side note, if it's that bad move on and find a new rental. There is no shortage of rental property in Pacific Beach. If the landlord is not willing to replace carpet and paint after the previous tenant was there for 7 years, I would be wondering how they will react when new issues arise??
CA DRE LIC# 01855519
In California, a landlord may hold a security deposit equal to two months rent for an unfurnished unit or three months rent if it is furnished.
As far as condition, you are expected to return the unit in the same condition as when you took possession less normal wear and tear. Legally, there are very minimal standards as to what condition a property needs to be maintained before making it available for a new tenant.
If you want the unit and the landlord has limited tenant options, negotiate to get what you want. If the landlord is not willing to budge, move on to the next one and know that you saved yourself some headaches.
Meridian Capital RE
I would not move into a place that is not properly maintained by the landlord. Before a tenant moves into a property the carpets should be changed, it should be thoroughly cleaned from top to bottom( including windows) and it should be freshly painted (bare minimum).
If the management has so little regard for these basic things, you can be sure they will drop the ball with landscaping, repairs and other necessary things. Keep looking for a lease property where they care!