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nola6

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Posts: 1
Reply with quote  #1 
O.K. so I know this is a cliche.... I rented to a very nice couple and his brother a two bedroom.  So far I know of 7 total living in a 2 bedroom with a baby.
What can I do about the wear?  I wrote into the lease that I would charge more for extra tenents. 
eagle

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Posts: 2
Reply with quote  #2 

I have been researching the same thing. I have found that in Michigan a landlord has the right to charge a surcharge for any persons staying over the time limit allowed by law (2 weeks in MI). I have yet to find out how much by law I am allowed to charge.Hope this helps.Try typing in your states name & law example (Michigan housing laws) in your search engine & see what pops up


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eagle
Indu

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Posts: 4
Reply with quote  #3 

What about the state of Utah? I'm having a similar issue. My tenant moved his girlfriend in (though he tells me she 'will be' moving in soon). She will be added to the lease later. But in the meantime, can I charge anything? And can I increase the rent for adding her to the lease?

OHlandlord

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Posts: 3,814
Reply with quote  #4 
You all seem to have the same problem.  And this is one that falls under the "gray" area (neither black nor white).  It is difficult to prove extra unauthorized occupants in a unit.  One way to prove it is if they are recieving mail there.  Another is if they are there daily.  Many LLs write into their leases how long a guest can stay to avoid this exact problem.  I actually have them register any guest who stays over 3 days.

I would suggest the same to all of you.  Write a lease violation notice to the tenant stating that there are more occupants than allowed.  Let them know that these people have to be placed on the lease or vacate the premises by xx/xx date.  (The amount of time will vary according to your state's laws.)  You basically are going to give them a perform or quit notice.  They either perform what the lease says they will, or they need to quit (leave). 

While you are waiting for that notice to expire, start documenting the extra occupants.  Do they get mail there (ask the mailman)?  Are they seen there daily? (Get statements from neighbors, other unit's occupants, or note the date & time you see them there each time).  Do they park their cars there and when/how long are they parked there?  (Take photos of the cars, note license tag #s, document when they arrive or leave.)  If you can take a photo of the people coming or going (in a public area like outside the door) do it.  Beware that they may get defensive or upset so try not to let them see you.

You basically need proof to show that these people are there.  Other forms of proof are increased utiltity bills for the unit (if you pay them), inspections (give notice according to your law then go in and inspect the place if you are allowed to do so), and bills to the place in someone else's name.  You need documentation because as I said, this is a gray area.  It is very hard to prove in court.  "NO, they don't live here, they're just visiting!"  If you can increase the rent for the extra occupants, try to raise it an extra amount for the increased utiltiy bills plus a small amount for the extra wear & tear per occupant.  Another idea is if they are violating health/occupancy codes.  Call the health dept or the building/code inpsector for your area.  8 people in a 2 BD unit would be over the limit.  (HUD usually calls for no more than 2 per BD + 1.)  You could use this to get them out.  Good luck.
eagle

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Posts: 2
Reply with quote  #5 

It is in my lease but I don't know how to find the limit on the surcharge in my state where can I find this info. I have been doing everything you said pictures & documenting the dates of them being there in our state the max time a visitor can stay is 2 weeks. then they need my permission in writing to continue to stay. It is easier for me than most as I live next door. So the letter goes out tomorrow to either have her leave or they both need to move.


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eagle
OHlandlord

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Posts: 3,814
Reply with quote  #6 

I dont' have the surcharge info for MI on any of my paperwork.  Your best bet is to go to the state statutes online and try searching for "unauthorized or extra occupants".  Good luck getting them out.

jmollin

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Posts: 8
Reply with quote  #7 
This is great advice.

I have been on both sides of this issue. Recently I rented our garage apartment to a young couple. They needed a place, I had the vacant apartment, but the rent was too high for them so we negotiated two months. By the end of that time they would find a place in their price range and I would have found a tenant that could afford the rent. They had great references. Then, without telling me they plan to move in one day early. Then there is an extra person, and later I find out that extra person had a cat (I allowed one cat for the month with an agreement they would take care of pet damage and a deposit).
After three days of not being introduced to this new person, I introduced myself. In that introduction, they announced she was only staying a couple of days. She did leave shortly after...
We kept on top of the "kids" after that. They pretty much towed the line, but found a place in one month instead of two. I had the last month rent in hand, so when I had to clean up lots of cat hair, a gross tub, clogged toilet, scratched up hall wall, their trash, etc. they ended up with only one third of their last month rent back. I itemized all of it, but didn't include the extra person and cat. I figure if they take me to small claims I have something to show I wasn't taking them to the cleaners....

Oh, and they took an extra 7 days to move out. We did charge them for four.

On the other side..I rented for ten years...my two kids and myself. I married and my husband's two kids began staying with us every other week. It wasn't easy and I wasn't in favor of it, but felt like I was between a rock and hard place. Eventually, they were only with us for a few days a week. I did tell my LL. They were kind enough not to raise the rent, but, I was a good tenant. I kept their house in very good condition.


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jayne
haynesm

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Posts: 64
Reply with quote  #8 

Now is the time to rewrite your lease.  You may not be able to use it for the tenants you have in your place at this moment but it would be ready for the next renters.  In my contract I have a place where each person staying there has to list their name and SS# along with their age.  Its a tough problem.

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