S is for Security Deposit

If you've ever felt overwhelmed by the language of leasing, take some help from New York's tenant-rights group Tenants and Neighbors, which has published a set of 30 flashcards to help renters understand their rights and obligations.

Designed by long-time renter and graphic designer Candy Chang, the set of 30 cards defines such terms as subletting, privacy, repairs, and pets, while concisely outlining New York's laws regarding each.

The cards, while cute, are meant to empower renters in a relationship where the landlord typically has (and occasionally exploits) far more knowledge about the ins and outs of tenant law. The cards are specific to New York, but hopefully Chang's idea will inspire other states to make available such clear and concisely worded information to their own renting residents.

At $10 per pack, the flashcards are a modest investment when you consider that they could end up saving you money by helping you avoid landlord disputes (especially in the unfortunate event that you'd need to hire a lawyer). Knowing your rights is the best way to protect them.

What about you? Is it worth a few bucks to you to know your rights?
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