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RealEstateAnswer, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 28340
Experience:  10+ years in handling Leases, Landlord-Tenant, Foreclosures,Mortgages, and Eviction cases
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Im in Texas, I own a house and have a roommate/ tenant

Customer Question

Hi, Im in Texas, I own a house and have a roommate/ tenant leaving in with me. I gave her 2 weeks to moved out because they are not paying her part of the contract. They keep lingering and running a high utility bill. I disconnected the water because I can not keep paying it anymore. My income is very limited. Now she is saying she is going to sue me because she has cancer and i disconnected the water. Can she sue me??... in the mean time, she still in my house, running my electric bill out of the wall and not paying a penny. She is someone who pay me some rent at first, but in the last 2 months has not paid for anything.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  RealEstateAnswer replied 1 year ago.

What do you use if the water was turned off then? You shared that you live in the home also?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I came with my parents few houses down
Expert:  RealEstateAnswer replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for the reply. I am sorry to say but she could sue you. I say this because a landlord/owner can not use self help to evict a tenant. By self help, I mean taking action to essentially force the tenant out, like changing the lock or in this case, turning off the water and/or utilities. If you want her out, you need to proceed through the court and evict and can sue her for unpaid rent and get the court to sign an order, requiring her to vacate. If she fails to leave on her own, then the Sheriff can physically remove her. At this point, the water needs to be turned back on and when you evict, sue to recover these costs.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Can she go and connect the water herself? that way I wont hasve to pay anymore. I can not afford it. I can stay in my parents house. Would that be legal?
Expert:  RealEstateAnswer replied 1 year ago.

She could, depending on what the city requires. They may want and need to see a lease agreement or document to evidence she resides there and is responsible. If so, you can advise her of the same and provide her what she needs to do this but it does need to be corrected.

Expert:  RealEstateAnswer replied 1 year ago.

Hi, are you still with me?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I will contact you again with more questions. She said to give her until the 18th. She will be leaving then.
Expert:  RealEstateAnswer replied 1 year ago.

Thank you and I will be happy to answer them. If you have not already, I just kindly ask that you rate my help, so the site gives me credit. You can always come back and ask follow up questions as needed.

Expert:  RealEstateAnswer replied 1 year ago.

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