Landlord entitled to draw on part of the deposit. Legal costs.
A lease for an indefinite period was made on 1 August 2016, and a deposit of ISK 290,000 was put down. In January 2020 the tenant informed the landlord that a crack had formed in the shower floor, but the landlord never came to inspect this or have it fixed. The tenant therefore carried out a temporary repair to the shower floor. After the end of the rental period, the landlord made a claim against the deposit in the amount of ISK 244,885. The tenant rejected this claim and referred the matter to the Complaints Committee. The tenant considered that the landlord could have mended the damage in a less expensive manner.
The Complaints Committee considered there was no doubt that the tenant was liable for the shower floor, the tenant having admitted being at fault. It was stated on the invoice that an attempt had been made to find a comparable shower floor, but without success. The committee therefore took the view that the tenant should bear the cost of the materials and half of the charge for work. The landlord also requested that the tenant be ordered to pay for his legal costs relating to the processing of the case before the committee. The committee did not consider itself to have the authorisation to grant this except in the case of baseless complaints, which did not cover the present case.
Conclusion: The landlord was entitled to retain ISK 106,615 but was ordered to return the remainder of the deposit, ISK 183,385. His demand for the payment of his legal costs was rejected.