I have a question regarding a room mate deposit. I rent a house and needed a room mate - Back on July 1st I met a woman

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Customer: Hi Hi
JA: What province is this in? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: I have a question regarding a room mate deposit. I rent a house and needed a room mate - Back on July 1st I met a woman & an agreement was made she would move in Aug 1st - at which time she paid 1st month - I told her I would not take down my ad until I knew the agreement was secured, Today she said I am backing out due to needing a surgery, funny thing is I reposted my ad - she was first to answer, Now I am screwed for Aug 1 unless I can find someone else my understanding is she broke the agreement I do not have to give her the money back that is the point in paying 1st month up front. I am correct yes?
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: Mississauga Ontario Nothing - I posted the ad & have been trying to confirm I am correct
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: Well she has been a pain asking me for a key right away - which was a No - she asked me to let her move stuff in ahead of time which she missed each appt set, then on Friday she called me & said that who ever pays her moving costs sent me a cheque instead of her - I received nothing - but she asked me for the cash - another no now this I think she is trying to pull a scam honestly
Answered by JJL11 in 15 mins 2 years ago
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JJL11, Expert

Hello - My name is ***** ***** I'm happy to assist you today. I am an Ontario lawyer who can answer tenancy law questions.

Did you sign any sort of rental agreement with this woman?

Customer
No nothing was due to be done on moving day
Customer
No receipt given for deposit
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JJL11, Expert

I see - Landlord and Tenant laws do not apply to your situation because you were roommates and not in a sublet situation. Since you did not have a roommate agreement with her which mentions the return of this deposit if she did not move in, you can retain this deposit to cover your losses if you are unable now to get a roommate for August 1. If she decides to sue you in Small Claims Court for the return of this money, you will have to argue that her actions caused you to suffer monetary loss and you should be entitled to keep this deposit to cover your losses. You will have to show that you did take action to mitigate this loss by trying to get another roommate.
Hope this answers your question.

Customer
That is exactly what I thought I just like to be sure before moving forward. Personally I think she is trying to run a scam & her actions have caused financial distress for me I turned away 2 other women due to her taking the room. I am looking for someone else. Thank you kindly for confirming I am correct. Appreciate it very much. Have a great day
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JJL11, Expert

You are very welcome. Take care

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