Home Buying in 90042>Question Details

Kaiserstrasse, Home Buyer in Los Angeles, CA

Tenant nightmare - please help.

Asked by Kaiserstrasse, Los Angeles, CA Fri May 6, 2011

In escrow on a bank approved short sale. Property has non-permitted guest house that has a tenant as well as a tenant in the main house. Both are refusing to let my contractor in to inspect the property. They have been uncooperative throughout the selling process. I've called LAHD and was informed that I'm legally bound to give them 70 days notice to move upon my taking ownership. I'm really not sure how to proceed. I love this property and think it will work for me long term, but I've read horror stories about tenants squatting for months with owners unable to do anything. I've spoken with two attorneys and have been given marginal advice. They confirmed my initial thoughts that I would be facing severe relocation fees, but, because this is a single family residence it doesn't fall under that category. More useful information was found at the LA housing authority than these attorney's could provide.I was charged $200.00 for basically online info. Any advice greatly appreciated.

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Sellers agent and seller really need to step it up. Legally they need to provide them with a Notice of Entry, which should either be hand delivered to the tenants or posted on the door. The seller (legal owner) has rights to enter the units as long and this notice has been provided. And the seller should have keys to enter.

Now if the owner has made these attempts and the tenants are physically not allowing it to happen, good luck. Either one of 3 things is fact. The tenants are very combative, the current owner/agent has zero ability to enforce there rights/or has not even attempted or the tenants are simply scared/nervous that there time there is now limited.

Either way it sounds like a hairy escrow with defects that will continue for months after the close. Not impossible to get them out, especially it being a single family residence. But it may cost some money and time.

If you are willing to buy without any inspections I'm sure you are aware that would be like playing roulette. But if you proceed and close escrow, contact and use an expert eviction company (I could refer you one if needed). I would also call them anyway to know what methods you could use to get them out after the close of escrow. Hope this helps. If it's a great deal it may be worth it, but it also may be a potential nightmare.

1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun May 8, 2011
Note to everyone: Tenants need to be dealt with PRIOR to listing the house for short sale. This should have been dealt with WELL BEFORE you got short sale approval from the bank. All you can do at this point is try to buy the tenants out. 1st is the owner still collecting any form of rent from these tenants? If he is, have him let the tenants live there for FREE while you're in escrow & then give them 1 mos rent to move out when you close escrow.

562-430-3053 cell
Realtor Since 1996
Short Sale Expert
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri May 6, 2011
If I were you, I would approach the tenant and offer them cash to inspect.
Should you decide to purchase, I would then offer them cash for keys.
I realize these options may not appear to be the best, but if they accept you've gotten rid of your hassle!
Good Luck!
Steven Abraham
"25 Years of Professional Real Estate Experience"
949.378.4005 Cell
Licensed Real Estate Broker
Prudential CA Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun May 8, 2011
Hello Keiserstrasse,
I had a similar situation once. The buyer ended up paying very large down payment for the lender to agree to a drive by appraisal only. The buyer bought the property with the tenants and then went through a process of eviction. It is very difficult situation and worth of going through only if the deal is extremely good for you as the future owner. Tenants are subject to all laws that apply to them (based on the ares where the property is located). Definitely request copy of the lease agreement from the owner and learn what the terms of tenancy are. After that you must contact somebody who knows all local rules and regulations for tenants. They will advise you on time frame and costs of eviction. Feel free to call me for details of my experience.
Best of luck, hope all goes well.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 6, 2011
Hello Kaiserstrasse,

If the unit isn't legal you may have to give them notice to move and provide relocation funds to have them moved. This sounds like a very sticky situation. The listing agent should allow you to do inspections. If they are that uncooperative this may be a red flag. Even thought it's not permitted if the current owner is renting it and the City finds out, they still could qualify for relocation. Further, the City put on notice about this might request relocation and removing the un-permitited rental. Sounds like a nightmare.I hope your agent knows how to handle this. If you decide not to purchase it, I would be happy to help you find something else as I wouldn't have allowed it to get to this point as I know the hoops of these sort of properties well.

Good luck!
Monique Carrabba
The Carrabba Group
Keller Williams Hollywood Hills
(323) 899-2900
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 6, 2011
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