How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Walter Your Own Question
Walter, Legal Consultant
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 11528
Experience:  Specializing in all aspects of law including Family, Real Estate, Employment and Consumer Protection
Type Your Legal Question Here...
Walter is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I had an lease with option to buy from a landlord.

Customer Question

I had an lease with option to buy from a landlord. The house went into foreclosure and the landlord was aware that the house was in foreclosure. The bank was unaware that i was living in the house. Because of this the bank gave me two weeks to vacate the premises. Should the landlord refund me my ssecurity deposit and can i get compensated for damages and being force out of my home.
Submitted: 9 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Walter replied 9 years ago.


Yes you are still entitled to your security deposit. Since this was a lease with option to buy if any of the monies was to be put forth on purchasing the home you may have a claim for breach of contract and a judgment for the amount that was to be deducted from the purchase price.

You also have the right to sue for moving costs since you had no reasonable notice from the landlord as well. Some judges will allow for moving costs as well as first months rent in some rare cases.

It is a very simple process and if you have ever seen Judge Judy or the other court shows it is similar. You each go in and argue your case. You do not need a lawyer and most judges ban them from small claims court. You can do this by going to your local court house and filing for a Small claims hearing. The downside is you can generally sue for around 4,000 or less.

If the amount was for more then 4,000 your only option is to take this to civil court. If this is the situation, I would strongly recommend seeking legal counsel in your area to represent you. While some lawyers are expensive often you can find young lawyers fresh out of school who can represent you for a much smaller retainer and work out payment plans if needed. Also keep in mind if you must hire a lawyer you can request that they pay you the legal fee's as well if you win your case.


Customer: replied 9 years ago.
This information is bland. Should i contact the landlord again to try and settle this. I am not sure exactly where the landlord is now. How do i go about seving the papers. Other than the lease with options to buy contract what other proof do i need to present to a judge.
Expert:  Walter replied 9 years ago.


You can send a demand letter to the landlord informing him that you want your security deposit back as well as any other amount you feel you may be justified in receiving. Make sure you provide contact information as well. You may want to consider hiring a lawyer to send the demand letter for you as this will carry more weight and often is enough to get the issues cared for.

If you take him to small claims court, the clerk will get the paperwork needed to serve him. You will be required to hire a process server or have the sheriff serve the landlord with the court action.

As for the proof....reciepts for what you have paid, and your losses. You will also want to bring the notification you received about when you needed to be out of the home to show the courts the amount of time you were given to leave.

I am sorry my answer was bland to you, feel free to not accept my answer if you feel it was not helpful. I would rather not receive payment if you are unhappy with my services.

I wish you the best,