Rental Basics in Las Vegas>Question Details

Makworld00, Other/Just Looking in Las Vegas, NV

landlord hasn't paid mortgage for 5 months. Just listed as a short sale. when can i stop paying rent to?

Asked by Makworld00, Las Vegas, NV Wed Aug 19, 2009

him? 5 months we have paid him but he has not paid his mortage
just listed it for short sale
property is in a high rise
hoa is $800 also unpaid for months
Is a short sale considered like a foreclosure and if so I should no longer have to pay rent?

Help the community by answering this question:


You can stop paying rent to him when either: (1) the lease expires, or (2) he is no longer the owner, whichever comes first. Bottom line: You're obligated to pay rent to the owner for the duration of your lease.

Two points: (1) There's still a valid lease in effect. (2) You're still receiving the benefit of renting. That is, you've got a place you're living.

Another person suggested making an offer on the property. That's a good suggestion so long as you can get it at an affordable price. I suspect his monthly mortgage payment and condo fee are far higher than the rent you're paying. So, just to make up some numbers, you might be paying $1,500 a month in rent, but he might actually be paying $2,500 a month in mortgage and condo fees. Depending on what monthly payment you'd be comfortable with, you'd have to acquire the condo for far less than he paid. That's the whole idea of a short sale, of course. But you'd have to really calculate the number to make sure you could afford it.

One difficulty I've heard of is that sometimes the condo will restrict access to certain amenities to only those units (whether owners or renters) who are current on their condo payments. So you might want to be alert to that.

A short sale is just an ordinary, everyday sale except that it is contingent on the lender's approval. That is, the lender (because it'll be taking a loss) must approve the sale for an amount less than it is owed. A short sale does adversely affect the seller's credit, but it's entirely different than a foreclosure (in which the bank actually becomes the owner of the property).

Hope that helps.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 19, 2009
Don Tepper, Real Estate Pro in Burke, VA
Believe it or not, if you don't pay the rent the owner can evict you. Have you checked to see if the notice of default has been filed on this property yet? Have you spoken to your landlord to see what his intentions are regarding the property?

A notice of default triggers the foreclosure clock. Once a notice of default is filed, the owner has 35 days to cure the default until penalties and extra fees start to pile on. The owner could still stop the foreclosure in a few ways: negotiate with the lender(s) for a loan modification, file bankruptcy, or pay the past due monies. If the owner continues to do nothing or is unsuccessful in getting a loan mod, the notice of sale is posted 21 days prior to the auction date.

As a tenant, if the property is foreclosed on or sold at auction, you do have rights.

Let me know if I can assist you in determining your options.

Heather Peck
Rosen & Company West
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 19, 2009
if the home is up for short sale then you may want to see about buying it. Good chance you could pay less each month than you currently pay. I cannot say you should milk it so to speak and if you don;t pay rent he could evict you if he wanted. The home is five months behind so the foreclosure is probably not to far off. You will get a official notice letting you know what is happenng so just check the mail daily and be prepared.

Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 19, 2009
Thanks Dave,
So I am safe to assume then that a short sale is not looked at as a default? or to be looked at the same as a foreclosure? We gave him a nice security deposit that I am sure we will not see again as well.

I am just disappointed to hear the news as my fiance and I love the place. I just don't want to pay someone if they are not keeping up there end of the deal. We are always on time and never late on a payment to him. Would you recommend just washing our hands of it and moving out? or staying and milking the system as long as we can once the property is actually foreclosed on?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 19, 2009
Just because the owner has not paid their bills this does not allow you to stop paying rent. If you signed a lease you are responsible for that contract. I would give 30 day notice and move out and explain to the owner in writing your intention.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 19, 2009
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