Foreclosure in 98103>Question Details

earthsilence, Renter in Seattle, WA

If a house is foreclosed on then resold at auction and the sale is pending, when does the renter have to pay rent to the new landlord?

Asked by earthsilence, Seattle, WA Wed Feb 6, 2013

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Dan Tabit’s answer
Earthsilence,
Thank you for asking. I would expect that someone would be contacting you regarding this. It might be a good idea to set your rent money aside until you are notified. Just be careful that whoever comes expecting your rent money is the actual owner, not a scam artist.
When you do pay, use a check and request an immediate receipt for your records.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 6, 2013
Sorry about your situation. Do I understand you correctly that the first position lienholder (bank) foreclosed on the house some time ago and then used an auction to sell the property rather than list it for sale. I ask because that is not typical for properties in the Seattle area. Usually the lienholder auctions the property as the final step in the foreclosure process. If there are no bidders at the auction willing to pay what is owed the bank, the bank automatically becomes the new owner and the landlord by default. If this is the case then it may be several months before the home actually ends up on the market. Therefore the bank would be requesting rent though more likely they would want you to vacate the property. A lot will depend on whether you are month-to-month or lease. A lease may entitle you to remain in the house according to the lease's terms. I would suggest you start by consulting the Tenant's Union of WA State website http://www.tenantsunion.org/rights/section/foreclosure and then go from there. Hopefully that helps. Hang in there and know your rights.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 6, 2013
You should consult an attorney or the Tenant's Union, etc. Beyond paying rent, there's also the question of when you'll need to move.

One piece of good news. If you have only a limited time you can stay--two to three months, whoever owns the property might not want to collect rent! Some entities see that as creating a landlord-tenant relationship, which they may wish to avoid. That would be up to the new owner of the property, so there's nothing you can really do to get that result, but it might happen.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 6, 2013
You should expect that the new owner will contact you immediately after they take title to the property. Rents you've already paid should be pro-rated and paid to the new owner. Likewise, your deposit should be transferred to the new owner. You may be asked to sign a new rental agreement. I recommend that you look into your rights as a tenant before you sign any agreement.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 6, 2013
You will be contacted by whoever is managing the property. If it bought at auction, when the new owner closes no doubt they will bein touch with you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 6, 2013
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