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I recently moved out of an apartment I lived in for 2 years. I don't know how old the stove top was when I moved in, but it was not new. While I lived there, the stove top got some small stains on it from water boiling over pots. Before moving out, I somewhat attempted to clean it but did not succeed because I was short on time and figured the worst I would get would be a small cleaning charge.

Now my former landlord is taking $300 out of my security deposit to replace the entire stove top because they have deemed the stains to be impossible to remove. After hearing this, I did some googling and found many methods of removing those types of stains and I have doubts that the cleaning staff even tried to remove those stains and they are basically using my to try to do free renovations.

In the state of Virginia, does the landlord have any legal obligation to prove they attempted to clean the appliance before charging me for a replacement? Additional do I have any right to see a quote or proof of the cost of the repair?

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does the landlord have any legal obligation to prove they attempted to clean the appliance before charging me for a replacement?

Not by default. Virginia statute § 55-225.19 reads in relevant parts:

The security deposit and any deductions, damages, and charges shall be itemized by the landlord in a written notice given to the tenant, together with any amount due the tenant, within 45 days after the termination of the tenancy.

[...]

The landlord shall:

  1. Maintain and itemize records for each tenant of all deductions from security deposits provided for under this section which the landlord has made by reason of a tenant's noncompliance with § 55-225.4,

(please note that I have not read the entire statute, but you may want to do so as well as § 55-225.4)

Thus, the statute does not compel the landlord to prove what you mention. However, you are entitled to file a complaint/grievance in Small Claims court. There is where you would need to produce evidence with which to dispute the landlord's assertion(s) about the need for -- and/or cost of-- replacement of the stove top.

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