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Old 08-26-2009, 03:54 AM
 
Location: FL
216 posts, read 767,231 times
Reputation: 120

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I am currently in St. Pete, having moved from Long Island (NY).

I've been looking at rentals and now I realize I will need to research the landlord of any property of which I'm interested.

I'm not sure how to go about this. Other than Googling the owner's name on the web, is there anything else I should be doing?
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Old 08-26-2009, 06:39 AM
 
Location: Naperville, IL by necessity; Pinellas by choice
214 posts, read 617,974 times
Reputation: 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by kamorra2 View Post
I don't want to negatively impact my credit rating. I suppose if I quit paying the rent, he could evict me and then try to sucker some new chump into renting the place. Then he could take my deposit and the new poor guy's deposit too.

So can I just not pay last month's rent and keep my security deposit? I'm guessing he's not planning to give me that back.
You really need to consult an attorney, not make a decision based on an Internet discussion group, whether we think we're experts or not.

I was a LL for several years (Illinois) and my attorney advised me on what the letter of the law was, what the intent of the law was, and what really could and could not be done without incurring negative consequences. Cost me a few $$$ but it was worth it to have expert advice.
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Old 08-26-2009, 08:05 AM
 
26,773 posts, read 41,306,440 times
Reputation: 14908
Quote:
Originally Posted by kamorra2 View Post
I don't want to negatively impact my credit rating. I suppose if I quit paying the rent, he could evict me and then try to sucker some new chump into renting the place. Then he could take my deposit and the new poor guy's deposit too.

So can I just not pay last month's rent and keep my security deposit? I'm guessing he's not planning to give me that back.
Of course we are not lawyers but the law is clear and so will a lawyer be....you can not just stop paying last months rent because you probably will not get your sec. deposit back....having said that, you can either take a chance that the LL won't go to small claims court for which at first he has to pay the fees upfront and than he has to tell the judge that you didn't pay last months rent in order to get the sec. deposit back...which makes him look bad since you can show the judge that he doesn't pay his mortgage and is in foreclosure which makes his chance of winning, less.....or you can choose to write the LL a certified letter and get him to sign that you don't need to pay last months rent since you have your sec. deposit paid to the LL and since he is having financial trouble you doubt if he can pay it back. See how and if he reacts.
Maybe the LL is a good person who just ended up in a financial mess and is emberassed by the whole thing and is willing to sign off on your letter. You can also state in the letter that by not responding you take that as an agreement not to pay last month rent. That is making sure he has to react and other wise you have proof (make a copy and don't forget to send it certified so he has to sign for receiving) that he isn't willing to do anything to help the situation so in case you end up in court which I doubt, you have enough proof to win. As long as you have paid all other months it doesn't make sense for him to go to court...it will cost him a lot of money and the outcome is very unsure for him.

I was 3 times in small claims court and won 3 times. 1 time a huge comapny settled before the court date, although before they weren't willing to do anything....it all comes down to proof, proof and proof!

I'm a LL as well and was in small claims court against a tenant and won a judgment but it cost a lot of money so in order to go there you really want to know you have a good chance, otherwise any person going there will loose time and a lot of money in fees and court costs and effort.
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Old 08-26-2009, 03:31 PM
 
180 posts, read 508,937 times
Reputation: 140
Well he lives in another part of the State so not only would he have to go to court, but he'd have to come here to do it. So yeah, I agree with the idea that he's not going to want to bother. Also, good idea on the certified letter bentlebee.
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Old 08-26-2009, 03:38 PM
 
14 posts, read 29,341 times
Reputation: 21
Default I found...

That if you have a pretty good relationship all along with your landlord, talk to him. If I asked the questions, mine would answer, but wouldn't offer anything up on his own.

I had a 2 year lease, with 16 months remaining and I sent him an email saying hey look, I need stability in my personal life and can't have this interfere with my job can we mutually agree to terminate the lease on X date, and I will move out. Get it in writing - have an attorney write it up - is it worth that little bit of money. My LL was okay with that (he was just pocketing the rent anyway) and was even appreciative that I was so understanding of what happened - and didn't take him to court for intent to defraud.

One thing I do want renters to know - if you are in a privately owned condo/townhouse and the LL goes into foreclosure and stops paying the monthly maintanence to the condo association - they will evict you, the tenant and that will be a judgement against you, even though you did nothing wrong. You just happen to be the person living at the property.

If you are looking to rent a private residence, check out Trulia.com. You can see if a notice of default has been issued to the property. That can save you from running into this situation. Unfortunately, there won't be any public record if the LL hasn't been served with the notice yet.
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Old 08-26-2009, 03:58 PM
 
26,773 posts, read 41,306,440 times
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The eviction part will only happen when the foreclosure really happens and that can take months or even more than a year and in my area most were over a year or almost 2 years in foreclosure before they were foreclosed on. My neighbors home took almost a year and they just send in the keys and walked away....2 properties with tenants that were in foreclosure, took more than a year and both tenants have moved away aproxx. 9 months ago after their lease was up and still the homes are empty and not foreclosed on, so I wouldn't worry too much about eviction, specially after what TampaKaren has send you in her post.

If it was me the tenant, and as I stated before I'm a LL as well but have no mortgages ...I would sent a letter and see how he will react and if he lives in another county, he will have to file a small claim in the county the property is at so that makes it even harder....also keep looking at the public records and see if he got served with anything else...I know it isn't much fun renting that way, but moving cost money and now you are aware of the situation and you have time to find another place and try get your sec. deposit back either way.
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Old 08-27-2009, 09:06 AM
 
14 posts, read 29,341 times
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hi there Bentlebee,

You are definitely correct in regards to single family homes. I do know folks who have stayed as long as 2 years without paying anything except their electric/water bills. I was only referencing eviction (for the general knowledge of all that might be reading this thread) if it is a condo or townhouse where a monthly/annual maintanence fee is paid to the condo association. If the LL stops paying that maint. fee the association has every right to evict whomever is living at the property regardless if it is in foreclosure or not. The length of non-payment will depend on each condo communities' bylaws.

My LL stopped paying the maint. fee, and (thankfully I already sent notice that I terminated my lease) but I did get an eviction notice from the condo association due to lack of payment of LL's monthly maintanence fees after only 2 months. This is standard practice for the condo/townhouse community.

I wish I had been in a single family home, I could have at least stayed until the LL either sold or lost the property. Now I am moving again after only 8 months, at my expense.

The particular complex where I am moving out of had 100 out of 300 units in the foreclosure process and that is tens of thousands of dollars every month of lost money for the association that they use to maintain the property and pay the salaries of staff, as well as their vendors. They don't fool around when it comes to non-payment and the buyer agrees to those terms when they sign the bylaws as part of the sale of the property.
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Old 08-27-2009, 04:21 PM
 
26,773 posts, read 41,306,440 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myra120 View Post
hi there Bentlebee,

You are definitely correct in regards to single family homes. I do know folks who have stayed as long as 2 years without paying anything except their electric/water bills. I was only referencing eviction (for the general knowledge of all that might be reading this thread) if it is a condo or townhouse where a monthly/annual maintanence fee is paid to the condo association. If the LL stops paying that maint. fee the association has every right to evict whomever is living at the property regardless if it is in foreclosure or not. The length of non-payment will depend on each condo communities' bylaws.

My LL stopped paying the maint. fee, and (thankfully I already sent notice that I terminated my lease) but I did get an eviction notice from the condo association due to lack of payment of LL's monthly maintanence fees after only 2 months. This is standard practice for the condo/townhouse community.

I wish I had been in a single family home, I could have at least stayed until the LL either sold or lost the property. Now I am moving again after only 8 months, at my expense.

The particular complex where I am moving out of had 100 out of 300 units in the foreclosure process and that is tens of thousands of dollars every month of lost money for the association that they use to maintain the property and pay the salaries of staff, as well as their vendors. They don't fool around when it comes to non-payment and the buyer agrees to those terms when they sign the bylaws as part of the sale of the property.
Sorry to hear that but most single family homes over here have HOA/CDD and the HOA has to be paid monthly. If it hasn't be paid the HOA can also foreclose on a home but the process is similar and it takes months before anything happens to the tenants. We had the HOA foreclose on some homes and tenants could pay the rent to the HOA who was the new owner till the bank foreclosed soon or months after the HOA foreclosed...there have been no cases that a tenant had to be evicted. I have heard "stories" from some people that people where evicted within 24 hours, but they forgot to tell that months before they got served with foreclosure papers....if you stay longer than a year or not pay your rent the tenant might be evicted earlier.
In all the communities that I own homes there is a HOA and no one has so far be evicted, but some tennat tried to get away with not paying...even tenants who lived in homes that were not in foreclosure try to do the same....
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Old 08-27-2009, 04:25 PM
 
26,773 posts, read 41,306,440 times
Reputation: 14908
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mar1lyn27 View Post
I am currently in St. Pete, having moved from Long Island (NY).

I've been looking at rentals and now I realize I will need to research the landlord of any property of which I'm interested.

I'm not sure how to go about this. Other than Googling the owner's name on the web, is there anything else I should be doing?
You google Pinellas property appraiser and look who the owner is of the property...normally the same person who is renting it (I have heard of scams, so makes sure the owner is the LL or a management company).
Than you look on the Pinellas public records and type in the name of the owner and it will show up with liens or lis pendens or nothing

If you look in Hillsborough or Pasco you do exactly the same.

Good Luck, it is easy, if you have done it a few times you get the feeling!
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Old 08-27-2009, 09:12 PM
 
Location: East Tennessee
3,927 posts, read 10,612,957 times
Reputation: 5235
I don't know too much about this, but I was listening to a radio show (can't remember which one) last week. The show host was recommending a tenant contact the landlord's loan company and try an arrange payment directly to them instead of the landlord. It sounded like a daunting task, but they suggested the house would be maintained during the foreclosure process plus it could possible lead to eventual ownership. Interesting, huh?
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