Move in and move out fees are different than a security deposit and charged directly by the homeowner’s association. These are typically non-refundable fees and serve the purpose of covering costs. Whereas a security deposit is refundable as long as the terms of the deposit are not violated, move fees are non-refundable and cover moving costs, potential damage, and wear and tear on the building during your move.
Move in and move out fees go to the association. That revenue then gets put to use in repairing the common areas from standard wear and tear, such as worn flooring, or even to pay for cleaning fees. Additionally, these fees cover common damage during a move such as nicked walls and doors, cleanup related to the moves, and even sheet rock damage.
Move in fees also cover elevator reservations, or even padding for the elevator so furniture doesn’t damage the interior. Additionally, fees cover the costs in issuing extra door or gate passes for the movers, special arrangement for parking, or extra security. All of these exceptions do not fall in the realm of normal monthly maintenance or operations, which is why the move fees are not covered by your monthly dues.
There are administrative costs for a move in that is not covered by monthly dues either: office record changes, keys and gate code issuance, etc.
If you have questions regarding move in and move out fees, be sure to look at your association’s bylaws to find the specifics of your building’s policy.