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Ask Barrister Your Own Question

Barrister
Barrister, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 22549
Experience:  14 yrs practice, Civil, Criminal, Domestic, Realtor, Landlord 24+ yrs
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I am currently in Colorado Springs, Colorado. My wife and

Resolved Question:

I am currently in Colorado Springs, Colorado. My wife and I just moved here. To make a long story short, we gave the first months deposit plus a pet deposit to the owner of a home we wanted to move in, which totaled $1795 in two money orders. The homeowner signed a receipt of this payment. After doing this, my wife did not feel comfortable with this owner after thinking further so she looked at another property which she liked better. Then, when we called the homeowner back and asked her for our deposit back she quickly got off the phone and said she would call us back. Of course she has not called us back and she has not been answering her phone. What can we legally do to get back our money?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.

Hello and thank you for using JA! My goal is to provide you with excellent service and help with your legal problem.
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When were you supposed to take actual possession of the property?

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How long was the lease?

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Do you have the keys to the property?

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Do you have the landlord's address?
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Thanks
Barrister
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Customer: replied 1 year ago.


We were supposed to take actual possession on 01 July 2013.


 


The lease would be for 12 months.


 


We do not have the keys.


 


Her name isXXXXX and her address is 8035 Sawback Trail Colorado Springs, CO 80923 and the rental property isXXXXXColorado Springs, CO. Her contact number is XXXXX

Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for the additional information. I hate to say it but I have potentially bad news for you. When you signed the lease agreement, that would be a legally binding contract that is immediately effective upon signing. With that said, if you have changed your mind and want to breach the agreement, then the landlord would be able to hold you responsible for any lost rent until they rent it again.
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Keeping that in mind, the sooner you notify the landlord that you are breaching the lease, the sooner she will have to put it back on the market to try and find a new tenant. If she is able to rent it before your lease is set to take effect, then she has no damages and would have to refund all your money. If it takes her a month to rent it, she can charge you for a month. Theoretically, she could charge you for up to the entire term of the lease if she advertised but was unable to find a new tenant. The law seeks to put the non-breaching party in the same position as they would have been in but for the breach.
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So at this point, if you have decided to breach, you can minimize your liability by notifying her as soon as possible so she can get it back on the market and hopefully rent it before your lease was set to begin.
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Thanks.

Barrister

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If you need further help, just reply to me via the “REPLY” button and I will be happy to continue.

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I cannot enter into an attorney client relationship, this is a public forum, and all posts are available for public viewing. There is no duty of confidentiality that attaches to any posts. The information provided is not a substitute for a local attorney’s legal advice.

Barrister, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 22549
Experience: 14 yrs practice, Civil, Criminal, Domestic, Realtor, Landlord 24+ yrs
Barrister and 7 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
We have not signed a lease yet.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


We have not signed a lease yet. We are supposed to sign the lease on 28 June 2013. Since we have not moved in yet and we feel she is not going to fix stuff in a timely manner by things she said to us today. Then this is bs in my book.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.


I am not happy with the response. We have not signed a lease yet. We are supposed to sign the lease on 28 June 2013. Since we have not moved in yet and we feel she is not going to fix stuff in a timely manner by things she said to us today. Then this is bs in my book.

Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
Ok, if you haven't signed a lease yet, then that lessens your liability because from a purely legal perspective, you are only under an oral month to month lease at this point. So the most she could hold you liable for would be one month's rent if she wasn't able to rent it again either before or during July. In order for a lease to be binding, there just has to be an offer (I will lease you my place) an acceptance (You agree to rent the place) and some type of consideration paid (i.e. the money you paid). That is it. Then you have a binding oral contract for a month to month tenancy.
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I am sorry to have to provide you with potentially bad news, but please understand that I do have an ethical and professional obligation to provide customers with legally correct answers, even when an answer is not favorable to the customer.

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Thanks

Barrister

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