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Ask Barrister Your Own Question
Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 33704
Experience:  15 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years
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I am a section 8 land lord and have been accepting side

Customer Question

I am a section 8 land lord and have been accepting side payment what are the laws on this?
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Barrister replied 7 months ago.
Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I am a licensed attorney who will try my very best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can. There may be a slight delay in my responses as I research statutes or ordinances and type out an answer or reply, but rest assured, I am working on your question..If Section 8 finds out about an illegal arrangement between landlord and tenant, they can both be criminally prosecuted for fraud. Both of them could potentially wind up with a criminal record, and either of them could go to jail.The landlord will be removed from the Section 8 program, and the tenant will be have their voucher pulled and won't receive benefits from any welfare program going forward - state or federal. On top of that, the landlord may be required to pay back the monies to HUD. Section 8 fraud is taken very seriously by the federal government..So if either party lets Sec 8 know about this, then they could both be in big trouble with the feds....As an aside, in addition to being an attorney, I have also been a landlord for over 26 years....thanksBarrister
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
I did not take any money from the government. I only charge extra for the water treatment system in the home and the TV's mounted on the wall.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
The renter is moving out of the home and she said they seen in her bank account that she was given me extra money.
Expert:  Barrister replied 7 months ago.
If the tenant is reporting that the rent is $XXX and they are paying you $XXX + $XXX that is legally considered welfare fraud because the landlord can only accept what is stated on the HAP contract that they enter into with HUD and the tenant..Now if the tenant was renting something else from you, like a garage or a shed, or something else, then you could explain the extra money away....thanksBarrister
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Well I am active duty military and I don't want to be in trouble because I was taking extra money. She stated they said something to her but I let her out of her contract.
Expert:  Barrister replied 7 months ago.
Well, she might have been bluffing you to get out of the contract or trying to get you to refund her some money with the idea that she would lie to them if they actually did notice..But typically they wouldn't audit a recipient's bank accounts, so that sounds a bit fishy to me.....thanksBarrister
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
She never paid me the full amount for the security deposit and the other money was for the tv's and water treatment system.
Expert:  Barrister replied 7 months ago.
Ok, then that sounds like a reasonable explanation for the extra money....Barrister
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Thank you! I was really upset about this because today rent was due and she text me saying that they told her that I should receive a phone call because of the extra money and she did not pay her rent today which is the drop dead date.
Expert:  Barrister replied 7 months ago.
Ok, that still sounds a bit fishy to me and she might be yanking you around because she heard something from someone else about paying extra money and how everyone could get in trouble if it was rent and not for something else...If she scares you, then you don't make her pay the extra money any more...I don't deal with Sec 8 tenants any longer because they are a real pain..
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Every rent due date she has an issue. Now I believe it will be my word against hers because she told them something today. Well it started because I did a surprise inspection because I am active duty military and I live out of state. There were holes in the walls and she constantly complained about how she could not pay her rent so then I suggested that we break the lease and let her find her a place. I have renters ready to move in once she is out. She has just been a problem ever since.
Expert:  Barrister replied 7 months ago.
That is why I won't rent to them any longer..the entitlement mentality combined with a complete disregard for the landlord's property. Basically the worst of the worst. That is why the govt has to pay higher than normal rents because no one will take them..But I wouldn't worry too much about this because they are usually smart enough to realize that if they tell Sec 8, they put themselves at risk as well since they were a willing participant.. I still think that she is lying to you and using this as an excuse to not pay. If the Sec 8 payment has posted to your account, then they obviously aren't suspending it for anything improper..Barrister
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Yes it did post and thank you so much! I feel better about the situation.
Expert:  Barrister replied 7 months ago.
You are very welcome.. I think you are fine here and the tenant is just jerking your chain a bit...If you feel your original question and any related follow ups have been answered, I would very much appreciate a positive rating on the answer I have provided so I receive credit for my work. If you have a new question the JustAnswer folks require that you start a new question page, but you can request me by putting "For Barrister" in the caption and they will get it to me...thanksBarrister

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