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In January 2010 the landlord allowed us to move into a suite…

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In January 2010 the landlord...
In January 2010 the landlord allowed us to move into a suite while we were negotiating a lease that would be long term with 6 months free. during this process we did not know that the building was being foreclosed on. The next thing we know its in receivership and the new property managers started billing us for rent way more than we agreed. We explained the situation and they have refused to enter into a lease with us and we have refused to pay, because we were negotiating 6 months free with the old owner. We showed up today locked out with no notice. What are my options?
Submitted: 8 years ago.Category: Real Estate Law
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Answered in 7 minutes by:
6/15/2010
Real Estate Lawyer: Barrister, Lawyer replied 8 years ago
Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 43,047
Experience: 17 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years
Verified

Hello,

 

Had you entered into any type of written lease with the landlord?

 

Was the property foreclosed on and sold?

 

Is this a residential or commercial building?

 

You have been there since Jan and have not paid any rent?

 

Thanks.

.

Matt

 

 

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Customer reply replied 8 years ago

We have not entered into any written lease it was all verbal.

The property has been foreclosed on, but not sold. It did not sale at the trustee sale.

It is a commercial building.

We have not been paying rent, becuase we were told by the old owner we could negotiate the first 6 months free with a 2 year lease. That never happened becuase the new property managers took over and would not agree. The just kept telling us they would have someone contact us and billed us for a lot higher amount than we agreed.

 

Real Estate Lawyer: Barrister, Lawyer replied 8 years ago

Ok, if there was an auction, the building sold. It might have sold back to the bank, but it is now owned by someone other than the landlord you were dealing with.

.

Since there was no lease entered into, you would either be considered a squatter or a month to month tenant. If you are considered a squatter because you have never paid rent and have never entered into a lease, the new owner or his agent could simply call the police and have you removed for trespassing. If you have keys to the unit and there is no evidence of any unlawful entry, this would tend to defeat the idea you were a squatter.

.

If you are considered a month to month tenant, you could be evicted with a 30 day written notice to terminate your tenancy. With no agreed upon rental amount, the law would imply a reasonable amount based on comparable properties. If you failed to pay the assessed rent, the owner can then deliver a 5 day notice to pay or vacate. If the rent is not paid within that time, they then have to file for a forcible detainer to get a writ of possession from the court before they can legally remove you and retake possession of the property.

.

Having been a landlord for 18+ years, it does sound a little odd to me that a landlord would allow a tenant to move in for 6 months with no payment up front and no lease signed. Most free periods would normally be added to the end of a commercial lease or result in a lowered monthly payment for a longer period of time.

.

But at this point, your recourse would be to file suit for unlawful eviction against the property management company and the owner and a judge would then determine your legal status as tenant or squatter and award damages depending on the outcome.

.

.

Thanks

Matt

 

 

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