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Posts: 3
Reply with quote  #1 
My parents wanted to move and thought they would rent out our family home. They put it on Craigslist for low and the calls flooded in. In a matter of a day they had 6people wanting to come and see the house. They had interested renters fill out a renters application. One guy came in and before he even stepped foot into the house wanted to cut a check for everything to rent out the house ASAP. My parents were taken back and had the guy fill out the renters application and did a background and credit check with him. The guy came and saw the house in 3 separate occasions- had not one complaint and even talked about how excited he was to be getting the house for his family. Tenant signed the lease early and today my parents had him come and take a look at the house one last time before giving him the keys. Again, not one complaint out of him. 3 hours later the tenant calls and says he no longer wants the house and wants his money back. Tenant is claiming there are too many things wrong with the place and he is realizing it is too much for him to handle. I assured the tenant that (as stated in the lease he signed) the landlord was responsible to cover any problems within the first 30 days and anything after would be his responsibility. I let him know that because it is Friday- we will have to call home insurance company on Monday to have someone come out and fix the issues. Tenant said that he had taken up to 75 pictures of what he feels isn't up the par and said that if there are more problems he will break the lease.

My parents are extremely upset about the whole situation. What are our legal rights here? Is he owed his money back after only 3 hours of gaining possession of the property? If he breaks the lease and leaves what are we to do then? I need some major advice as this is our first time ever renting out our property!

Posts: 314
Reply with quote  #2 
the tenant has to tell you want is wrong and give you time to fix it, unless the place is un-livable
if they move out..charge till it is rented

Posts: 3
Reply with quote  #3 
Thanks! House is definitely liveable. He's complaining about minor things like how one of the closets in the house has come off the tracks and need to be put back and fixed. And we stated in the lease that we did not freshly paint the house and he signed it was okay. Now he's stating that he's not happy that's it's not freshly painted.

Tenant is also complaining how the dry wall in the garage is messed up because in the past the water heater had given my parents problems. He saw this after he signed the lease and said it was fine- and then we gave the keys now he's saying it's not fine. We are going to fix the issues but he had stated that because the house is not new and if there are other problems- he wants to break the lease.

Even after we fix the issues - is he allowed to do that?

Posts: 3,779
Reply with quote  #4 
No.  He needs to ask for repairs and give you a reasonable amount of time to fix them.  Based on what you mention, an off track closet door and some drywall that's messed up in a garage (not living space) is not sufficient to break a lease.  He needs to present an uninhabitable place to live to break his lease.  No law says units have to be painted between tenants.  Let him know that reasonable issues will be fixed, but since they are not habitability issues, he cannot break the lease.  Mention to him that he had the opportunity to view the unit 3 times before he took possession.  That will look good for you in court, should you have to take him there.

Posts: 3
Reply with quote  #5 
Thank you! I feel like we were lucky enough to get the tenant from hell! Tenant sent us a laundry list of things such as "no shower rod, knobs on light switches missing, stained bottom of the pool, bent screens on one of the Windows, a random stain in the carpet" even down the "natural smell of the house." All in one email along with pictures! We sent him an email this morning that all immediate problems with the house will all be taken care of Asap. We asked tenant for the best contact information so we can pass along to our home warranty company and handyman contractor to schedule a time best works for the tenant.

Later on in the day while I was at work, my mother (my parents are temporarily staying with me before they move) gets a a knock on my front door and it was a mail courier. They wanted a signature and gave her a letter from the tenant. Listing the again said laundry list of "problems" with a 48 hour notice (threat) to fix all problems because home is "in habitable" or give back all their money and pay for their moving process for the "inconvenience."

I am shocked! First of all I never gave him my personal home address. AND I live in a gated community and we never recieved a call at the gate for such person to come through. This is my personal address and I never gave it to him to send us mail or anything. What is this person doing ? We said through email to let us know the information we can give out to contractor and handy man to come and fix all the immiediate issues. House was shown as is and he saw it three times. Idk what to do I am at a loss!
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