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CalAttorney2, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 10244
Experience:  I am a civil litigation attorney with experience representing HOAs, homeowners, businesses and others in real estate matters.
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We recently short sold our home. The home was sold to a

Customer Question

We recently short sold our home. The home was sold to a "investor" that stated the home would be rented back to us. We were settling back in waiting to sign the lease on May 15, 2016. Instead, the realtor told us that we would have to move & also pay rent of 2400. A month till July 15 & a deposit of 1500. We are in the process of packing and trying to locate a rental as soon as poosible. Our goal was to be out by June 1, however we have not been sucessful as of yet to secure a rental, our rental inventory here is very low. Our intentions are to vacate as soon as we do.
My question, do we have to pay them rent & a deposit now that they've asked us to leave. We have not agreed nor have we signed any rental agreement.
Thank you...
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 1 year ago.

Dear Customer,

Thank you for using our forum. My name is ***** ***** I hope to assist you today.

If you have not signed a lease agreement, the new owner cannot charge you rent, (and they certainly cannot charge you a security deposit).

Check your sales contract carefully though - there are a lot of documents that you sign when you buy or sell a home, it is important to review all of them and ensure that you didn't sign something unwittingly.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
If we did unwittingly sign without our knowledge of said rental agreement in the sale, what are our rights? Thank you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Posted by JustAnswer at customer's request) Hello. I would like to request the following Expert Service(s) from you: Write Legal Documents. Let me know if you need more information, or send me the service offer(s) so we can proceed.
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 1 year ago.

If you signed a lease agreement, then you are going to be bound by the terms of that agreement.

The courts position on documents is that parties are deemed to have read and understood the documents that they sign.

Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 1 year ago.

Dear Customer,

I noted your request for additional services, unfortunately I do not participate in the forum's additional services program, however, your request will be posted to the forum for other experts who do participate (this does cost an additional fee). If you have any questions, or need assistance, please contact our Customer Service:

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you. So I just read over all the closing papers we signed & no where is there any mention of a rental agreement. I believe it's illegal to rent back, I found that out after the fact. Not sure if that is fact.
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 1 year ago.

It isn't "illegal" - meaning against state statute or case law, however, many lenders will prohibit a "leaseback" in their lending terms - so they will prohibit the leaseback to the seller as part of their condition of selling it to the buyer. But this is a breach of contract issue between the lender and the buyer as opposed to a violation of statute.

But again, if you didn't sign a lease, you aren't responsible for paying rent.

If you didn't sign a lease, the new owner/landlord can then move to evict you (so - just for planning ahead purposes - you will want to be familiar with CA's unlawful detainer process - the CA Court's self help site is extremely helpful (remember even if you have no defense, filing an answer to the UD complaint buys you additional time):

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Can you help me understand our legal right to vacate the premises. We do not wish to rush into a rental in fear. We've been told less than 1 month ago to leave.
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 1 year ago.

You need to find a place promptly. If the lender decides to file a UD action against you (see above), this is going to make it much harder for you to get into a rental unit.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you again. So to better understand, once the UD is filed I file my answer to buy me time?
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 1 year ago.

That is correct, use the Court's website that I provided above for information (and forms) on how this works (the court's website is actually very helpful).

(But do be aware, the UD filing will make it more difficult to get a rental, so for practical purposes, if you are looking for a new place to live it is going to be easier to find a rental unit without a UD being filed against you, than it will be with one filed. This is simply a consideration to take into account, but does not affect the answer above - filing an answer and forcing the new owner to take the matter to hearing will give you more time in the unit, prolonging the eviction process).

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
We don't wish to have this happen. He is demanding money by 5 pm today or the UD will be filed. We are pre approved with a couple property management companies but the rentals are just not there. We are ready to move upon finding one. None of this have we deliberately caused or want to be a part of. Not our standard of living.
I appreciate your recommendation & I will use the website for information. Thank you for your help
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 1 year ago.

You are welcome, and I do wish you the best with this matter.

(You can also contact your local (county) housing authority, let them know that you are facing imminent eviction, and they can place you at the top of their list for placement assistance).

Thank you for using our forum, and please do not forget to rate my service so that I can receive credit for assisting you.

If you would like to direct future questions to me specifically, you can do so by starting your new question with "For William B. Esq." and a moderator will notify me.

Thank you again, and again I wish you the best.


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
We have owned this home for 19 years. We are extremely disappointed that this is how it's all come to be. We have tried to do everything possible to just get our loan back to current & pay forward. We did not want to get any rears erased, put on the back end.
Should we contact him @5 & let him know we are moving on getting out however, no money will be paid.
Or should we not respond?
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 1 year ago.

I cannot advise you of taking a specific course of action (this is a "general information" forum only - for formal legal advice and specific strategy, you will need to speak with a local attorney).

However, vacating the unit will end the risk for a UD action.

To try to get any sort of rent, they would then have to sue you - but they don't have any lease agreement to base their suit on, so you would file a defense to such a claim (this would all be in small claims court (less than $10,000.00 in CA) where things are informal, and again, the court's self help site will be extremely useful - the same one as above, just use the drop down link on the left hand side for "small claims" - if this were to come up in the future).