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Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 33781
Experience:  15 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years
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In Abril od this year we singed a contract 12 month term

Customer Question

In Abril od this year we singed a contract for a 12 month term on a SFH in fairfax Va , I had requested that a mold test be done before we move in , the lab test came back positive per the inspector the SFH is not habitable. The realtor has asked to have both the landlord and i (tenant) signed per paragraph 27th Landlord inability to deliver possession to Tenant . we are now facing a lot of stress because we had given our 30 days notice in our current apartment and paying per day with penalties in order to stay here . The building has our apartment on the availability list. Also the landlord has cashed both of my deposit and 1st month rent total of 3,600. plus application fee of 100.00 as well as 625.00 for mold test . What are our rights as tenants in this situation.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
Hello and welcome. My name is ***** ***** I will do what I can to help..What is it that you would like to do here?.Do you want your money back for the rental?.Do you want to sue the landlord for not providing the dwelling?.I am not sure what your legal question is as "what are our rights as tenants" covers a lot of ground.....thanksBarrister
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
My question is what do you advise to do in this situation, to say the least to have her pay for expences I'm being charged for staying at my current place . I was not expecting paying two different places for the month of May it's not in my budget. to have her pay for those expences. The realtor requested to have a copy of the mold test considerin they did not provide help in paying for it , can she use that to get reinvented later by her home insurance.
Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
Well, if the landlord can't provide a "habitable dwelling" as of the date the lease is to start, then under the lease contract, he is in breach. When one party is in breach of contract, the other injured party can sue them and hold them liable for any related expenses that are a direct or proximate cause of the breach. .So here, you could either sue the landlord in small claims court for the rent you paid him for the house or for the rent that you would be forced to pay for a second place due to his breach if your lease is set to start and he can't provide the dwelling in habitable condition. As for the mold test, I think that would be reasonably recoverable because you would have been confirming that he was in breach of the contract with the test and but for his breach, you wouldn't have incurred that cost. I think that you could also hold him liable for any storage or moving costs if you are forced to move out of your current dwelling and he is unable to provide a habitable dwelling for you by the date set in the lease contract for you to take possession..As an aside, in addition to being an attorney, I have also been a landlord for over 26 years.....thanksBarrister
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Would you be able to break down paragraph 27th for me in lenguaje that I can understand. It mention something about the landlord having 15th days.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
how can I resolve this without having to go to court , I really need that money now to rent another place in that area , the only reason I wanted to move to that place is so my son can attend a better school and the trasferencia had already been done.
Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
Would you be able to break down paragraph 27th for me in lenguaje that I can understand. It mention something about the landlord having 15th days..I don't see anything posted regarding the actual language of the lease. I am not sure how to attach documents either since JustAnswer recently changed up their format.. If you can type out what it says, I will try to break it down into simple terms...If the landlord won't voluntarily refund your money, then your only recourse is court. That is how you force someone to give you back money that they don't want to give you back....thanksBarrister
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I have attached the document hopefully you are able to see it .
Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
That paragraph refers to something like where the house burns down. If the landlord hasn't maintained the property and allowed it to become infested with mold, that is just negligence on their part and this clause wouldn't cover them.
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thanks
Barrister
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
they want me to sign before they can return my deposit and 1st month rent . landlord refused to return the mold test of $625 Or any other expenses caused by this negligence. Do you see this as the right thing to do in order to get my dep and 1st rend dues back.
Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
Well, it depends on whether you are signing something that says you are settling and releasing them from any further liability. If you are, then it is up to you whether to accept that money back and just lose the $625 and other expenses or whether to reject it, file suit, and sue them for everything back including your damages. This might take a month or so to get a judgment, so it depends on whether you are willing to wait that long or if you need the money now.
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thanks
Barrister
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
This is what the realtor said in his latest email. Karen(landlord ) is stressing over understanding the cost of the mold remediation and any other preventative measures needed and their costs.  She would not be able to offer paying for the expenses as she is trying to figure how to pay for the remediation/prevention costs first.  She confirmed she would pay back your deposit amount and first month’s rent given as previously offered.
She will also be paying for the carpet herself.
It seems it would be best to release each other from the lease/contract and start fresh.  Karen told me she is not sure how long it will take to do and be able to pay for the remediation and any preventative measures
Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
Ok, that is exactly what I said...they want you to sign a mutual release to get your money back now. Or you can sue for everything that you are out in small claims court..
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So it depends on whether you can wait a month or so to get a judgment for the full amount of your damages.
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thanks
Barrister