Just one question from me to my dear readers

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My family  has a huge landlord – tenancy problem.  My parents are the landlords.  My cousin and her hubby would like to reside there because why not…  We have “verbally” given notice to the tenant  last March 15  that they should vacate the house by May 31 . My father again reminded the tenant  about this yesterday… but the tenant said ” this is  her house. See you in court,” then closed the door on Dad’s face.

 

This  is the situation.  The original tenants ( 2 ) who signed the lease had moved  out in 2010.  We didn’t even know they had taken in a roommate.  The roommate who was left behind  had asked for  permission  to  live in the house.  My parents  okayed it, but unfortunately , they didn’ t make a new lease agreement. The reason…smooth transition. In other words, it’s a gentleman’s agreement… with a handshake and a smile.

 

My dad is now writing a formal written notice … the tenant threatened  us with a lawsuit,  and that  would cost us at least $10,000.  My father cried because he had been good and patient with her. She has NEVER paid on time, ( always one month late ) and more often than not, it isn’t even a full payment at the end of the month.  ( We also pay the garbage fees and water )

 

Please,is there anyone of my readers  who knows about this stuff ?

35 responses to this post.

  1. That sucks. Can’t push the like button… I don’t have any answers but I feel your pain. I know, not much help.

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  2. Thanks . I really feel bad for my parents. They’ve been so nice to her… I’m sure that’s the reason the tenant takes my parents for granted. We’ve been subsidizing her for almost 10 years. Our mortgage is so much more than the rental fee , a thousand dollars more… we don’t want to lose the house. The rental fee is just a small relief from the huge mortgage my parents are paying every month.

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  3. Every County, State, Provence, or Country is different. But basically a 30 day writ of ‘Cease and Desist’ after the first 30 day notice will result in a ‘quit claim’ however if the tenet is making an attempt to pay rent a judge will do nothing. Landlord has no obligation to pay for services or utilities ! Since the subject is not on the original lease, which expires every three years,unless otherwise stated. BTW a verbal contract is binding! If they can’t pay the rent they won’t be able to sue (tell your dad 😉 ) JUDICARE does not give pro-bono aid to folks that don’t pay rent !
    A second route would be to transfer title for $1 with a ‘contract for deed’ and with a 30 day notice the new owner can do what ever they want with the property! (you said it’s family!) Your dad’s real estate attorney should have told him that. Good Luck On This 🙂

    Reply

    • In California, it’s not even a 30 day notice… it’s just 3 days.. and we’ve given the tenant enough time, 3 1/2 months , to look for another place.

      My parents know they aren’t obligated to pay for utilities. the original leases were college students ( our house is just 2 miles from university ) … the rent was $1500… my parents decided to pay for garbage and water . aaargh…. I don’t know.. My parents are too kind.

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    • Wait a sec.. do you mean that if the tenant pays the rent, we cannot get back the house ?

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  4. Google here is your friend:

    California Termination and Eviction Rules
    State laws specify when and how a landlord may terminate a tenancy. For example, a landlord may give a California tenant who has been assigning or subletting without permission an unconditional quit notice that gives the tenant three days to move out before the landlord can file for eviction. https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/state-laws-unconditional-quit-terminations.html

    Sure, they can sue you in small claims for up to the amount of the deposit–which is a max of $10,000–but that doesn’t mean they’ll get it. And since they didn’t give the deposit, your family should be within their rights to give them a few more days before calling the law on them.

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  5. Yea like Cassidy Frazee said 😉

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  6. lawyer up is my advice.

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  7. Consult a lawyer Ren. I guess that’s the best thing to do.

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    • Yes , we will do that. I haven’t slept a wink, Tita. What the tenant did to my father was so evil.

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      • There are people like that Ren. They take advantage.

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        • That’s why we have decided to fight. I now don’t believe in ” turning the other cheek,” . We have to fight injustice, and evildoings, no matter what their station in life is. Tita, in the Philippines, there was a family who squatted on our property. They asked for PhP 150,000 ,or else they wouldn’t leave. We gave it to them. Philippine laws seem to favor those who have ” less in life”… I watch what’s happening in the Philippines. There’s anarchy going on there. The poor doesn’t respect private property

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          • Right, they are deprived that’s why and they depend on the govt. to do it for them. Nakakainis nga tapos pagdating ng botohan, they could even come up with qualified candidates. It is always the same, most Filipinos never learn from the past. Kainis na talaga Ren. That 150K is too much. You shouldn’t have agreed to it.

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            • The machete decided it for us. Even after we had given the money to him, he continually harassed our construction workers. He was a thug. ( he’s the barangay chairman’s relative ) We complained, of course… And we complained to the governor who was our close relative …. he himself went to Boracay and talked to the chairman ,with 2 soldiers in tow.)

              As far as politics go, Filipinos are one of the worst constituents. ( according to my parents ) This is the reason why having so many multi party candiddates in a Presidential election is not good. Election of Duterte is an example.

  8. I’m very sorry to say I know nothing about this kind of thing but my heart goes out to you and yours. No one should be saddled with a situation like this which was brought about by kindness and trust on your Dad’s part as much as by anything

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    • It’s a good experience for me. My parents were in realty business in the Philippines… they still are, but we know now US laws are different from that of the Philippines. ( both countries favor the tenants, though… I don’t mind that, even though we’re on the other side of the fence. By the way, it was my mother who cried. She was shocked by her nasty behavior.

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  9. I’d check online for the landlord-tenant ordinance for the city where the apartment is located. May also contact local realtors or building managers’ association – they may be of some help. If these fail, consult an attorney. Don’t get too upset early on about tenant’s threats, odds are good she is blowing smoke – but then you do need to find out for sure.

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    • That’s a good recommendation. City /estate laws and ordinaces usually favor the tenants ( sympathy for the you -know..) . Realtors associations know their way around. Thanks !

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  10. Anyone can sue, but that doesn’t mean they will win. Talk to a real estate lawyer and put your mind at ease.

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    • She just wants trouble. She knows she’s not going to win. My parents have decided to see a lawyer. An update… the law firm sent the tenant a registered letter, and today, my father is going to file a complaint in court. $50 to send that mail, and $250 to file a case. This is reality. We cannot turn the other cheek anymore.

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  11. My dear Socorro, I am very sorry about that situation. Every country/State/County has their own laws that generally protect the tenant. (Happened to my parents in France).
    The best route: lawyer up. with someone who knows all the tricks. Which could include mean tricks to deal with mean people. Best of luck.

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  12. Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer.

    As they have no lease, it is a month-to-month tenancy. Unfortunately, it is unlikely you’ll be able to remove them by the end of this month because it’s so late.

    Deliver a formal written notice to quit. Send it certified mail so that they can’t say they haven’t seen it and you have proof for a judge. Send it ASAP. As others have said, 30 days from the date of the letter is standard, but you may need to give them until the following full month based on when rent is due — so if they are supposed to pay on June 1st, you may have to give them until June 30th, to be out before July 1st.

    Because your parents have been accepting late/partial payments, things will likely get muddy. Even if you give them a demand letter (in which case, they haven’t paid, you may be able to file an eviction in about a week), they could just pay and delay eviction anyway. But if rent is due on June 1st, on June 2nd, give them a demand notice (certified mail + notice on door), and cross your fingers that they don’t pay by state’s leeway date for tenants (usually 1 week after rent is due. Either way, make sure notice to quit has been given.

    If they are still there on the date given in the notice to quit, start eviction court proceedings. DO NOT just start removing things or locking them out. This will likely end up hurting your case. Actual filing for eviction shouldn’t be too costly in terms of $$, but definitely a lot of pain and aggravation. Get a copy of court complaint paperwork now, and if they’re still there on that date, take the day off of work if necessary to file it with the court.

    If you need help, look for local legal services who may be able to help for a discounted rate, but these services are often backed up. Hiring a lawyer to even draft a more legalese (read: threatening) could also be an option in hopes of scaring the tenant out.

    However, maybe you could entice a fast move by agreeing to waive the last month’s rent. You’d be losing money, but it might be worth it. Again, get it writing: “Tenant agrees to vacate the premises by 5/31/19 in exchanging for [refund/forgiveness] of May rent. If tenant is still on property on 6/1/19, tenant will be liable for full May rent and prorated June rent and previous notice to quit letter is valid.”

    Otherwise, limit communication to email/text, as you will have physical proof.

    It still could be a couple of months from now before they leave. There’s time for them to final objections, getting a court date, the hearing(s), and even if you win, your tenant will probably be given anywhere from a week to a month. Hope your cousin and her husband are already making plans to extend their stay whereever they live, find a short-term rental, or can stay with relatives.

    Hope this helps.

    Reply

    • Thank you very much !

      My father is now talking to a lawyer…. the law firm just sent a formal letter , registered, to the tenant. Tomorrow, he’s going to talk to the lawyer again . My parents have decided to fight this out legally even if it would cost us a lot of $$$. In our city, consultation is per hour.

      Ha ha ha… my cousin and her husband are both living with us… they are also uni students… but husband is graduating this weekend…. his parents are from San Diego, Ca. and they’ll be coming to attend his graduation.

      They wanted to move on May 15th actually, but the tenant requested a different date, May 31. That’s why we were surprised that she didn’t want to move out .

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  13. I’m afraid this is out of my wheelhouse, sorry, my friend.
    There must a website that can offer free advice, I imagine?

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  14. You have received lots of advice and opinions already. I hope one of those will help resolve the matter. How I wish I could say something also but I am not an expert in that field.

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  15. I’m so sorry this is happening to you. It sounds like you got some good advice. 😦

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  16. People who like to scam start this type of tenant trouble to stretch out their stay as long as possible. Unfortunately you’ll have to pay for either a property management agency or legal firm to begin the eviction process and let it play out. The scammer types know it takes time to process these claims.

    I recommend you get a security type of camera to monitor the outside of the home to provide any evidence of new vandalism if they go that route. Also do your research on this person so they can’t just up and disappear into the night if they damage you home or try to get away without paying what’s owed.

    Reply

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