I would like to present my demands to my squatter/tenant in writing as follows:
By now, you should have found a new place to live.
You will sign a record of your days and hours worked in exchange for the $300 you owed me and the $400 rent for October, plus a prorated rent for your Novemebr occupancy. You will return to me the keys to your room and the house. Youe will remove all your belongings from my house. You will sign a statement relinquishing your residence in my house and any monies I may owe you and any claims or actions you hve pending against me.
When you have completed these actions, I will relinquish storage unit #358 to you until the next rent is due in late November. I will provide you with the gate code, the cylinder lock and my 2 keys to the storage unit. You will have until November 25th to remove your belongings from my storage unit.
At this point, I don't actually want her to pay rent. I want her to Quit. Do I need to amend the 3 day notice to eliminate her option to pay November rnt and extend her tenancy? Or do simply refuse to accept further payment?
I made a rental contract, but she never signed it. I went to my house today, and discovered she has taken many of my books---I had a fine library of hardcover biographies---and tools. I will report the thefts to the police tomorrow. What justifies changing the locks: anything?
There are a few different ways to look at this. California law states that when a party has an oral residential lease, you cannot change the locks (or you will face a potential fine if she takes you to court). On the other hand, she doesn't have a lease, and I'm assuming she doesn't pay any bills. She doesn't really have any documentation to prove that she has a right to stay there. She's stating her intention to squat and now has stolen your personal property. If you simply take all her stuff and put it outside and change the locks, then it takes you out of the situation where you are having to go to court to get her out, and puts the burden on her to go to court to enforce her rights. If you change the locks and move all her stuff out, the police won't force you to let her back in. Be warned though, if she takes you to court and proves that she had a tenancy at your house, she could obtain a fine for $3000 against you. In the end, self help such as locking her out, is a risky proposition. It is possible, if she is not receiving mail at your property and has not other documentation that she lives there, that you could beat her case by simply denying that she was a tenant.
If you choose to go the eviction route you need give her notice that she must pay rent within 3 days or she is out. If she doesn't pay the rent within 3 days, you don't have to accept the rent and can go forward with the eviction. It would be wise to also serve her with a 30 day termination of lease notice (assuming she's been there for under a year...if more than a year it is 60 days). Then, even if the court for some reason forces you to accept her rent payment late (it is not unheard of in California courts, even though this is not authorized by the law), you can evict her at the end of the termination notice period if she does not leave willingly.
Please let me know if you have further questions. Best Regards, ZDN
I am in a tough spot. She is turning up the water heater, leaving lights on, throwing my food out, letting her dog scratch up my leather furniture, soaking the bathroom floor...and boasting that her pregnant, 16-year-old, incorrigible thief of a daughter will be moving in on Saturday. This daughter stole from her mother and has made criminal complaints against both my squatter and her own brother (too nasty to mention). She has called the police twice with bogus complaints against me. The police at my house used to be a very rare occurrence: this is NOT my lifestyle. My friends, and a police officer, have suggested I actually PAY her to move out! I'd be willing to discuss a reasonable settlement---she thinks I owe her for labor---but her demands were not reasonable...and now she won't talk at all. If daughter gets in here, I'll never be able to leave for fear she will steal or ruin more of my things, but being here is risky because of daughter's history of making felony complaints against her own family.
It seems that immediate forcible removal is my best option, although I would rather pay $400 (maximum) to get this parasite out ASAP.
Questions: Is $3000 fine my worst possible court outcome? What can you tell me regarding Penal Code Section 602 re. "unwanted guest"?
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