Free Security Deposit Withholding Notice

A security deposit withholding notice provides evidence that rent was paid for a specific period of time.

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A tenant has just departed the unit you were leasing to them and now you’re taking all the necessary steps to end the landlord-tenant relationship. If you received a security deposit at the beginning of the tenancy, one of those steps will be disposing of that security deposit. You have two options: you can make deductions or return it in full.


Those who want to make deductions from the security deposit can use a Security Deposit Withholding Notice to communicate to the tenant your intention to withhold. Most jurisdictions require such notice to be issued before landlords are permitted to keep any portion of the security deposit. Even if you aren’t required to send it by law, giving this notice to former tenants can reduce the chance of legal disputes.

Frequently Asked Questions


A security deposit withholding notice is a document showing evidence that rent was paid for a specific period of time. 



Landlords may want to use this notice to:

  • Satisfy State or Local Requirements – Certain jurisdictions may require you to send former tenants notice if you intend to deduct any amount from the security deposit. 


  • Prevent Future Disputes – This notice makes it clear to the tenants why they will not receive their entire deposit back by providing an itemized list of deductions. It lowers the chance that former tenants will claim the deposit is being fraudulently withheld. 

This notice is a straightforward document that includes:

  • Heading – The heading quickly introduces the sender, recipient and purpose of your letter to the reader.

  • Notice – The main body of the notice informs the former tenants of the extent of the security deposit withholding.

    • The main body will also indicate whether or not you intend to obtain an additional payment from the former tenants. If the former tenants comply with a request for the additional payment, taking the claim to court can be avoided.

  • Signature – You or your representative will sign the notice before sending it.

  • Certificate of Service – Whoever delivers this letter should execute the certificate of service portion, as proof that the former tenants received the notice.

  • Security Deposit Itemization – Attached to the notice is an itemization of deductions made from the security deposit, such as unpaid rent, unpaid utilities, and cleaning.

    • If you are concerned with whether or not you can make a certain deduction, refer to the laws of your jurisdiction.



Unpaid rent, unpaid utility bills (if the landlord provided those utilities for an additional fee,) significant damages caused by the tenant, excessive cleaning, and judgments from a court of law may all be deducted from the security deposit.

Please Note: Minor damages, damages that existed before the tenancy and normal cleaning MAY NOT be deducted.



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Once you complete the questionnaire and place your order, it will be available for immediate download in either PDF or Word document from your secure online account including a step-by-step guide on how to use your document.   




Generally, a security deposit withholding notice does not need to be notarized – the landlord only needs to sign the document to make it enforceable. 

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Applicable to all 50 states
Applicable to all 50 states

Our documents are vetted by lawyers and are applicable to all 50 states.