Help,my landlord is trying to evict me and I was paying rent.

Asked by Nursecassy, Vallejo, CA Wed Feb 10, 2010

My landlord called my husband and I back in July and told us to stop paying her rent since she was no longer making payments. Over the next few months we discussed buying the house from her in a short sale. In November she phoned us and told us to start paying rent again,which we promptly did. We also started applying for a loan to purchase the house,which she was all for. We just made an offer three weeks ago. Then four days ago we noticed a form to Pay rent or Quit posted on our door. We phoned her immediately and asked her what that was about. She stated she had to show the bank that she was trying to make her mortgage payments and was using us to do it. Our written lease expired last July. I advised her that she told us not to pay the rent and she stated that she did,but now she wants $8000 or she will evict us. Needless to say we don't know what to do. We were just served eviction papers this evening. What can we do we feel very betrayed and scared. Thank you!!

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Keith Manson-…, , Milwaukee, WI
Thu Feb 11, 2010
If you do not have any of the agreements in writing, you are out of luck. If you do not have the $8000 you will be evicted without any justifiable reason that can be used in court. This eviction will also have a negative mark on your credit report. I would get out of the house as quick as possible.

Keith Manson
First Weber Group
Certified Distressed PRoperty Expert
Metro Milwaukee
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Dallas Texas, Agent, Dallas, TN
Wed Feb 10, 2010
Sounds like why bother, apply for a loan , reside in temporary location, close on a home never have to worry about a land lord again.

Why go thru drama

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Don Tepper, Agent, Burke, VA
Wed Feb 10, 2010
See a lawyer.

One of your lawyer's first questions will be: Is any of this in writing? Do you have anything in writing from her directing you to stop making payments?

However, your lease expired in July. That means, most likely (check your lease and local statutes), that you've been on a month-to-month arrangement since July. Either party can terminate the arrangement on 30 days notice. So you don't have any long-term protection arising from the lease. Depending on the eviction process, you'd probably have as much time as with a 30-day notice.

The problem now is that she might also want to demonstrate to the lender that she's making efforts to comply with them by taking further steps against you--filing suit against you, withholding your security deposit, reporting your non-payment to the credit bureaus, etc. So while you were operating in good faith, she has you by the. . . well, you can guess.

We return to the question of whether you have anything in writing from her asking or suggesting that you withhold payment. A lawyer could advise you, but I suspect that such a document (e-mail, letter, Post-It Note, etc.) would go a long way toward protecting yourself.

And while I'm not a lawyer and couldn't even speculate on what a lawyer might advise, even without a written document you might have some leverage.

Imagine what effect a notarized affidavit from you detailing her request to you that you withhold payment so that she could demonstrate a financial hardship to the lender would have with the lender and the owner's attempt to do a short sale. I'd guess that such a document might just torpedo any hopes she might have of negotiating any sort of arrangement with the lender.

Now, that'd be playing hardball. But if your account is correct, she's perfectly willing to make you the fall guy in a scheme that could cost you thousands of dollars ($8,000 plus legal and court costs) and your good credit.

Find a good real estate lawyer, one who specializes in tenant rights, and see what he has to say. And do that immediately--before you have any further dealings with the owner.

Hope that helps.
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Thadeus Brew…, , Scottsdale, AZ
Wed Feb 10, 2010
I hope you have your landlords requests to stop paying rent & an offer to purchase the home in writing. I would advise contacting a real estate attorney asap.
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