Home Selling in 90712>Question Details

John Arnaldo, Both Buyer and Seller in Cerritos, CA

I want to sell my home, My niece is living there right now. She does not pay rent. Can I just throw here out?

Asked by John Arnaldo, Cerritos, CA Tue Feb 14, 2012

Help the community by answering this question:


Hi John,

Did she stop paying rent? Do you have a rental agreement? If she has stop paying rent, you may be able to give her a 3 day notice to pay or quit. If she has never paid rent, then you may need to start the eviction process. Talk to an attorney that specializes in landlord/tenant issues.

This does not constitute as legal advice. Please seek legal counsel. As Realtors we are not allowed to offer legal advice.

Another option to getting legal counsel is joining a landlord association that offers free advice on basic tenant/landlord legal issues as a service to members. Annual dues are $79. (I don't work for them or get any benefits for referrals). It may be an option if you don't want to pay attorney fees. Email me if you would like their contact information. They have an office in Long Beach.

Also you might try this link for reference: http://www.dca.ca.gov/publications/landlordbook/

I hope this has been helpful!

Louri Groves
Prudential California Realty
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 14, 2012
The summer buying season is just around the corner.

We are already starting to see properties move faster, and multiple offers are making a comeback. If you are planning to sale ,now would be a very good time to list your home with a realtor.

That being said, try to talk with your niece, inform her you will be puttting the home on the market.

Let her know she should start looking for a new place to live. Try this approach first since she is family, maybe she will do the right thing. She is not paying you any rent , so you have nothing to loose if she moves out right away.

On the other hand if she will not leave on her own accord you will have to start the eviction process. Just make sure you follow the letter of the law. You may want to consult an attorney just to make sure any action you take is within the law. I hope it does not have to come to eviction. I hope she has enough love and respect for you to do the right thing.

If you would like information on current market conditions in your immediate area email me your proprty address. I would be happy to do a market review for you. (no cost no obigation)

Best of Luck to you.

Kawain Payen, Realtor
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue May 1, 2012

Sorry to hear that a family member would do this to you. Unfortunately the law protects the tenants even when they are clearly taking advantage of the situation. I would highly recommends that you consult with an eviction attorney to see what steps is best for you to take. You can sell your property while your niece is living there.

Please feel free to email me if you have any other question or need property analysis done on your property.


First Team Real Estate
Karen Suykry
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 15, 2012
You can email me your lease agreement that you have with her & I can let you know what you can do as far as evicting her or just telling her to pay or go in 3 days. I only live about 10min from your house & could also just meet with you to see what you have in writing with her.

Shoot me an email directly, I don't look back on this same Trulia thread for answers posted after mine.

562-430-3053 c
Realtor Since 1996
Main Street Realtor
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 14, 2012
I would recommend consulting with a landlord tenant lawyer before taking any action.
Web Reference: http://www.homenet123.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 14, 2012

This happens often with the short sales and rental properties I deal with. Keep in mind the saying "The Pen is mightier than the Sword", prior to taking extreme action you can implement proven strategies that I have seen to be effective when dealing with this situation. At the end of the day people, even those who we perceive to be unreasonable act in their best interest.

Feel free to give me a call at the number below for a consultation regarding this matter. You can also visit my website to find out more about me.

Best Regards,

Roger Beltran
Certified Distress Property Expert
Dignified Transition Solutions Certified
Web Reference: http://www.RogerBeltran.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 14, 2012
I take it asking her didn't work? That's a shame because you obviously were doing her a favor if she wasn't paying rent in a nice residential city like Lakewood. Boy, this entitlement generation....

You will hear many different comments from simple to extreme like serving them with a 3 day pay rent or quit notice to removing front doors.

It is my understanding and of course you will have to verify this with any new law or guideline changes, that you 1) give her a 30 day notice to vacate. 2) After 30 days from her receiving it, you can then file an unlawful detainer in Superior court as an owner's right to secure your property. 3) Sheriffs will show up in a month or so to kick her out.

Most sheriffs will not get involved without a court order.
Most court orders will not be served without some type of notice to tenant or occupant first such as a 30 day notice to vacate.

AGAIN, check this against any new laws or guidelines in landlord/tenant rights materials and maybe try Terri's suggestion of calling a property management co. If push comes to shove and you don't want to go through legal channels AND you can afford it, maybe agree to pay her first/last deposit at an apartment just to get her out. GOOD LUCK John and hopefully she'll cooperate!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 14, 2012
I am not familiar with CA law but before you throw your niece out you must be sure to talk to an attorney or speak to someone who knows the landlord tenant laws in your area. If your niece did not sign a lease with you then I would hope you would be able to throw her out!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 14, 2012

I suggest you check the California Department of Real Estate Landlord Tenant Law. Just because she doesn't pay rent doesn't mean she doesn't have a tenancy and there are procedures you may have to follow.

If you don't find what you need on the website, you may want to contract a property manager and get some resources; which may include eviction, attorney, posting, etc.

All the best to you.
Web Reference: http://www.terrivellios.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 14, 2012
If you have any sort of written agreement with her, you need to follow the procedures outlined in that agreement. I would recommend going back through your emails to see what you've said to her even in a very casual way.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 14, 2012
Last I heard there was no rule against putting freeloaders out on the street.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 14, 2012
you've never heard of California laws. This is what you get when you ask non legal people legal questions.
Flag Tue Apr 14, 2015
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