Although California law does not define "normal wear and tear,"
it is up to the landlord's discretion as to how much of the security
deposit to return to the tenant at the end of the lease or upon early
termination of the rental agreement. The California Apartment Association
(CAA) does provide guidelines for security deposit deductions, advising
landlords to overlook wear on carpets, peeling or worn paint, sun damaged
window treatments, loose or missing grout, rusty fixtures in the kitchen
or bathroom, and discolored or faded kitchen and bathroom linoleum.
The CAA also provides examples of damage that may warrant the retention
of all or part of the tenant's security deposit. Damage in excess
of normal wear and tear includes missing or broken window treatments,
torn drapes and blinds, missing or broken appliances, water damage caused
by tenant possessions, major carpet stains, and holes in walls and doors.
If any of the window treatments you provided in the rental property are
excessively damaged, you are within your rights to withhold portion of
the security deposit to purchase
new window coverings for the San Jose property.