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Old 06-10-2013, 07:22 PM
 
Location: Lyons, France, Whidbey Island WA
15,432 posts, read 12,684,329 times
Reputation: 8080

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Hello

I rented my home in Alaska and the tenants for over 2 years were just about perfect.

They called me April 8 and asked if they could leave early May 1 breaking the lease which went until June 1. As my home rents with a whisper, I said ok. It did in fact rent by May 1.

About April 15 in an effort to "repair" the walls, the tenant attempted to cover numerous holes in walls and painted with an incorrect color. Paint splatter on the wood floor etc. He insisted that he could "fix" this (16 foot ceilings). I had my painter who did paint the home upstairs and down to take a look. "You got slammed" was his response. The entire upstairs would need to be repainted. Normal $2,200 we are friends gave me a $1,200. price. I forwarded the statement to the tenant and he said he would pay $600.00. After multiple exchanges I have exhausted any hope of recovering this myself. In addition the tenant forwarded final utilities bills refusing to pay for one until we "caught" his error. Finally he took an expensive furniture piece saying it had to be cleaned and attempted to return it to storage without my knowledge or permission. As I had changed the access code to storage this came to light. He eventually did return it with supervision.

So now I have found a collection agency to address this issue. There is the $600.00 painting an attorney consultation and 4 hours trying to resolve this issue. Are there other costs which I should rightly charge to him. The collection agency if successful will keep 50%. Ouch.

It is a little more than the principle of the thing. It's a good chuck of change.

Thanks for your advice.
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Old 06-10-2013, 07:53 PM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
18,666 posts, read 25,852,165 times
Reputation: 37427
It sounds like you haven't gone to court. It's my understanding that you first have to get a judgment before you can go about collections.

If you take him to regular court, then you could try to collect attorneys fees if you win, far as I understand. But, I don't think you can charge him for consultations.

Don't know the laws in Alaska. In California, you have to do a pre-move-out inspection and give them the chance to fix things so they don't lose any of their deposit. And you can only charge for damage beyond normal wear and tear.

It sounds like the tenant tried to do the right thing. I don't know what to say, except to find out the landlord tenant laws in Alaska and do things by the book.

I am completely confused about the furniture issue. Was the house furnished? Returning things to storage? I don't get this part.
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Old 06-10-2013, 08:05 PM
 
Location: Lyons, France, Whidbey Island WA
15,432 posts, read 12,684,329 times
Reputation: 8080
I could get a judgement however being in Cali right now would prove difficult. I see your point about doing the right thing but with few days left I did not think he could 1)do it safely or 2) avoid more problems (paint splatters on wood floor).

Alaska does not require a judgement to process collections just the lease and the provisions therein.

Yes the home was partially furnished. He took a butcher block without my knowledge and tried to put it into storage with my belongings which he placed there when they moved. As we were in conflict I changed the code just to make sure my belongings were secure.
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Old 06-10-2013, 08:11 PM
 
1,092 posts, read 3,070,019 times
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What about a deposit? Have you already kept all of that? Your friend should have charged you his regular rates and you should have pursued all charges in small claims court.
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Old 06-10-2013, 08:13 PM
 
10,887 posts, read 14,567,494 times
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You can collect the cost of the actual documented damages/repairs you have paid to make the place rentable and, you can collect all allowable attorney fees. If you are not a legal resident of Alaska or not renting the property under a business you established legally in Alaska, you would also charge for the expenses of your ‘Authorized Agent’ to be handling this. The actual amount you would charge would be what the COURT has awarded you. Do not send the amount to collections without that court judgment or you may end up paying the tenant instead of them paying you.
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Old 06-10-2013, 08:15 PM
 
Location: Back at home in western Washington!
1,490 posts, read 4,203,491 times
Reputation: 3235
Quote:
Originally Posted by AADAD View Post
He took an expensive furniture piece saying it had to be cleaned and attempted to return it to storage without my knowledge or permission. He did return it.

So now I have found a collection agency to address this issue. There is the $600.00 painting an attorney consultation and 4 hours trying to resolve this issue. Are there other costs which I should rightly charge to him. The collection agency if successful will keep 50%. Ouch.

It is a little more than the principle of the thing. It's a good chuck of change.

Thanks for your advice.
The furniture sounds like a non-issue. You have it back.

Take the $600 for repainting out of his deposit. Not sure you can charge for your time in resolving issues...it's part of being a LL. If you take the amount out of his deposit, you won't have to use a collection company (and give up 1/2 of the money).

Sounds pretty simple and basic to me.
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Old 06-10-2013, 08:15 PM
 
Location: Lyons, France, Whidbey Island WA
15,432 posts, read 12,684,329 times
Reputation: 8080
I see. Well the point may be mute therefore as I am in California and obtaining a judgment for an Alaska resident may be silly. As a travel nurse my residency changes. My legal address is in Alaska, home PO Box and phone, cars registered there as well.
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Old 06-10-2013, 08:16 PM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
18,666 posts, read 25,852,165 times
Reputation: 37427
Quote:
Originally Posted by AADAD View Post
I could get a judgement however being in Cali right now would prove difficult. I see your point about doing the right thing but with few days left I did not think he could 1)do it safely or 2) avoid more problems (paint splatters on wood floor).

Alaska does not require a judgement to process collections just the lease and the provisions therein.

Yes the home was partially furnished. He took a butcher block without my knowledge and tried to put it into storage with my belongings which he placed there when they moved. As we were in conflict I changed the code just to make sure my belongings were secure.
Still confused. With few days left for what? Do what safely? How do you collect on a whim whatever you decide someone owes you? The lease doesn't say he has to pay x amount of money for painting, attorney consulting, etc. And he took a butcher block table and tried to put it into your storage with your belongings. What?

I feel like we're on different planets.
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Old 06-10-2013, 08:17 PM
 
Location: Lyons, France, Whidbey Island WA
15,432 posts, read 12,684,329 times
Reputation: 8080
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sabinerose View Post
The furniture sounds like a non-issue. You have it back.

Take the $600 for repainting out of his deposit. Not sure you can charge for your time in resolving issues...it's part of being a LL. If you take the amount out of his deposit, you won't have to use a collection company (and give up 1/2 of the money).

Sounds pretty simple and basic to me.
He wanted to purchase furniture. Deposit applied to that with additional cash. This occurred before damages were found.
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Old 06-10-2013, 08:19 PM
 
Location: Back at home in western Washington!
1,490 posts, read 4,203,491 times
Reputation: 3235
Quote:
Originally Posted by AADAD View Post
Alaska does not require a judgement to process collections just the lease and the provisions therein.
I missed this part earlier . So, you can actually send someone to collections based on what you believe they owe in Alaska?? You don't need a judge to give you a judgment? Sounds like anyone who rents anything in AK can end up with crappy credit because a LL can arbitrarily decide they are owed mega-bucks and send it to collections . That can't be right...
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