Had an interesting conversation with a friend about what would happen in such a situation.

Let's suppose the contractual term was:

"Internet must be provided free of charge to tenants".

But a landlord may for obvious reasons want a small deposit paid to secure the router.

Could a landlord demand such a deposit, or would it be a breach of the term?

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    If it is in the contract, then they can charge it. If it isn't in the contract, then it may cause issues. Depends on the wording, what does this (hypothetical) contract say about deposits? – Ron Beyer Jul 31 '18 at 1:56
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    "But a landlord may for obvious reasons want a small deposit paid to secure the router." - for what reason? I would think it is covered by the deposit usually required by property rental agreements. – Lag Jul 31 '18 at 7:17
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    Internet access and router are not the same. Garbage pick up an garbage can are not the same. – paparazzo Aug 1 '18 at 1:19
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    I would argue it depends on the purpose of the router. If this is their router, and you are simply being provided WIFI access, then no, it would be a breach of agreement to charge a deposit. If the router is optional, and it would be possible to connect to the Internet without it (ie a single computer could connect, but a router would be needed to share the connection or provide WIFI acces), then charging would be reasonable. – davidgo Aug 1 '18 at 5:14
  • Also, what exactly does "secure the router" mean? If it means "secure their router - ie configure it with security controls", then no, you should not be paying a deposit for that - as its a cost they have regardless and not something they can get back when you leave. (Secure the router could also mean "buy/acquire the router") – davidgo Aug 1 '18 at 5:17

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