Home Selling in Pennsylvania>Question Details

Myrn, Home Seller in Johnstown, PA

Can you sue a real estate company?

Asked by Myrn, Johnstown, PA Thu Aug 6, 2009

We had hired a real estate company to manage a rental property. They found a couple that wanted to rent w/option to buy. Now after two years, it has gone bad. The couple has not paid rent for two months and the real estate agent wants nothing to do with it. Plus the property has a lot of damage that will need to be fixed before trying to sell again. I have the real estate's signature on every piece of contract. She basically said there is nothing they can do and she's sorry it went this way. Can the real estate company be held responsible for this in any way since they were the ones managing this?

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When is their lease up? You can file a judgement against them for the amounts unpaid. Before doing this you may want to send a few certified letters to them to show you have tried to collect a debt. If you have made phone calls to them and visits, keep track of the dates and times and whether or not you were able to speak with them. This will help when filing a judgement. Is your home on the market for sale now? If you put your home back on the market, the lease would transfer to the new owner.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 6, 2009
Sean: I have physically gone to the office and asked and they give some type of excuse as to why they can't find it.

Cheryl: I've already done this :( we signed a contract two years ago, when one year was up we renewed it for another. Now for the past two months the renters have not paid.

They do not want to move out at all, but I cannot continue to pay both mortgages and let them live there. I actually had to put an eviction notice on the door and in 15 days I will file papers with the magistrate. They have done a lot of damage and I'm worse off than when I started.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 6, 2009
Myrn,

Here in Philly, we can show you the report we ran but I am not able to give you a physical copy. But if you have gone in person and they do not have a copy on file, that would be a concern to me.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 6, 2009
We are running intp situations like this and are usually advised not to do a rent to own contract. A buyer can get out of a contract for may reasons. The property value, mortgage contingency, other inspections, credit, are amoung the top reasons buyers back out and can get their deposit back. A contract to buy a home is only valid up to 365 days. The real estate company is taking their chances, as are you, in assuming the renter will buy. I highly reccommend not doing this. You are taking your home off the market for more qualified buyers. Renters who want to rent to own are doing so because they cannot buy at that moment due to bad credit, lack of down payment, or the ratio of debt to income. This will most likely not change by the date agreed upon. Stay away from these deals - there is only a small chance it will actually go to closig.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 6, 2009
I asked if they ran a credit check or a background check and I was told "yes" however any time I ask to see them I am given the run around. Even after two months of asking, I've yet to see any proof.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 6, 2009
No they cannot. Their job is to find a tenant and manage any issues which may arise such as plumbing etc. If they were not paying rent, they notify you and can assist in the eviction process.

Did they run a credit and background check on the tenants?

The security deposit is there which you can keep if they did damage the property but I am sure it is not enough to offset the repairs which will need to be done.

If I may ask, why would you sue the real estate company as they really are not at fault unless they did not accurately disclose the tenants background check.


-Sean
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 6, 2009
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