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stlouislandlord

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Posts: 27
Reply with quote  #1 
Had a tenet not pay me for Dec and Jan and tell me they plan on moving out by this weekend.

I've been watching the house and they haven't been there in two weeks.  Been trying to reach them and they won't answer or return calls. 

Finally let myself in and almost everything is gone:  bed's gone, couch is gone, TV is gone, their washer and dryer is gone, and looks like the toilet has been stopped up for days.  Only a few pieces of furniture remain and a their fridge with a little food. 

What do I do if I don't hear from them by Monday?  They haven't been paying me but I haven't evicted them, I don't know where they are and they told me they were moving out.  Can I just move someone else in there and store their belongings for awhile since they did tell me they were leaving?  If not, how long should I allow their stuff to sit there?

Also, what is the legality about walking into a tenet's house/apartment without permission?  I have a friend with a property manager that keeps walking into apartment whenever they feel like it without notice or even a phone call, what should he do next time he finds out the property manager was in the apartment?  He called and their excuse was "we were checking if you were still living there".  He's already stopped paying them and is looking for another place and plans on telling the judge what's been happening if he's evicted, anything else he should do?
kurt

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Posts: 137
Reply with quote  #2 

FIrst off, does your lease state about abandonment of the premises? It should and if it doesn't get some thing written into it concerning such Now this is my opinion and you do what you want. But  as a landlord having do deal with tenant scum/dead beats/loosers, dirt bags if a tenant hasn't paid, and is not occupying the premises in erson for 3 days or more, I change the locks and throw their stuff in the trash..

 

As for your friend, I'm not to sure about the legal side of the bad property manager.. Questions I'm asking is, why would they walk into his unit often and give a lame exscuse (would at least have to knock) I mean if he has paid rent up to date usually most tenants don't abandon their unit with out a good reason?

OHlandlord

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Posts: 3,787
Reply with quote  #3 

First, the entry question.  Not legal to enter without notice.  Most places (check your state/local law) require 24 hr written notice and only during certain hrs.  If a tenant agrees you can enter, you don't need to give them that much, but better to do so and have it in writing.  Post it on the door, go in the next day.  Other wise, you can go in only in an emergency without notice.

As for missing tenant, check state law to see if there is a definition of abandonment in it.  OH does not have.  Most places require a period of time with no paid rent (10 days - 2 mos. check your law)  What we do here:

1.  Post 24 hr. notice to enter

2.  Next day, go inspect.  Look for:utilities still on[?] most belongings gone [X], little or no food [X], anyplace to sleep [X], etc.  Take pics & document it.

3. You've already had phone calls unanswered [x]

4. Post notice on door stating place will be deemed abandoned if they fail to contact you in 7 days.

5.  In 7 days, if no contact, go in & remove belongings (store for 30 days), change locks.  Post notice that place was abandoned on ___ date. Belongings will be stored for 30 days.  Contact _____ person to retrieve belongings.

6.  Go ahead and fix up & rent unit.  Dispose of things after 30 days.

If your state does not define abandonment, place a definition in your lease that states "this unit will be considered abandoned if all of the following conditions are met:"  then list your definition.  Make tenant initial definition. 

kurt

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Posts: 137
Reply with quote  #4 

Ya know what 24 hour notice? It sucks wind, cause sure landlord has to give it otherwise they can get socked in court, but if a dirt bag tenant doesn't let the landlord that gave a 24 hour notice in to inspect, the police won't do a thing and options are limited, slow, and costly! And ya think the dirt bag is gonna pay el landlord back for court costs? See the pigs fly, poop sticking to the moon, and the check is in the mail! I live and rent in columbus ohio and the friggen tenants have more rights than the landlords, it's a shame not to mention a discrace!

 

OHlandlord

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Posts: 3,787
Reply with quote  #5 

I know what you mean Kurt.  I'm just south of you,  having the same problems, even if some of my units are a little more upscale.  (Are you in the bottoms on the E side?)  I got one now that is giving me fits!  She's a suction 8 too.  Called Metro to get a complaint inspection < 3 mos. after it just passed.  Then refused me entry to fix the problems.  (Wasn't convenient for her - since she goes drinking every Sat. night!)  Metro didn't care & said if it wasn't fixed they weren't paying.  I had to go there day after Christmas to do repairs since they had to be done by Jan 4.  Now they're doing a lead test.  This woman has had 22 violations since Aug.  Metro will do nothing.  I gave her 3 day notice.  Clerk said magistrate won't let me do that.  I gave her a 30 day notice to vacate.  She's supposed to be out on 6th.  Want to make a bet whether she's out?  She called eve of the 30th, wanted to know if I'd prorate rent back to Metro!!  Why?  I'm not accepting any more rent, or at least not cashing their checks.  I tried showing other unit in bldg. Sat.  Prospects got there first.  This crazy came out and started badmouthing unit & bldg before I even got there.  Nope, no protection for us LLs!

stlouislandlord

Registered:
Posts: 27
Reply with quote  #6 
damn ohiolandlord, if section 8 is that bad what's left??  I'm renting to private individuals and it sucks, even with decent credit, good references and a job they still stopped paying.  Everyone I talked to said I should go section 8, but now that's bad too?! 
OHlandlord

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Posts: 3,787
Reply with quote  #7 

Darn!  I had a whole reply typed out & then the power flickers.  Happens on snowy days sometimes.  Well here goes again...  Accepting Sect. 8 is an individual choice.  Personally, I do NOT have much faith in the program.  Guaranteed rent is fine, but you'll have HUGE headaches to get it.  (No free money & all that).  Here's my problems with the program:

1.  You have to jump through hoops to even get qualified.  You must wait and have the place inspected.  They often deny payment for petty things (like < 12" peeling paint on a ceiling, paint peeling between a window & a storm window, no down pipe on the emergency valve of a water heater, no smoke detector in an unfinished basement).  You have to fix these & pass another inspection.  Then sect. 8 does a bunch of paperwork.  You have to go down and sign a contact with them.  It takes a month to be OKed.  You lose this month of rent.

2.  They don't want to pay market value rent for the unit.  The amount on the tenant's voucher must include the rent and ALL utilities.  (Sect. 8 will estimate the utilities high, even if you show them a utility bill).  They have their own formula to calculate it.  You tell them $XXX rent, they send you a letter saying you need to take $50 less or include utilities (Don't include utilities- the tenant will run them up!).   They always pay less than what I could get otherwise.

3.  I have more problems with their tenants.  75% of my Sect. 8 tenants have problems w/ the police while in the unit (drunk, disorderly, domestic disturbances, fighting, noise).  They have more delinqent utility notices & shut-offs.  They frequently move in unregistered people (against their rules).  They have more lease and rule violations.

4.  They don't seem to take care of the place as well.  The units need more cleaning afterwards, more repairs, have more wear & tear on them.  Sect. 8 will not guarantee payment for tenant damages.  They tell you to sue the tenant.  (But they have no $ or else they wouldn't be on the program!)

5.  It is difficult to get a bad Metro tenant out.  They make you sign a yr's lease.  You must give them 60 days to end their tenancy or raise the rent, and then they may not allow the raise because they won't pay that much.  They will not back up the LL even when you know the tenant is violating their rules.  Here, they will only send the tenant a letter to pay up in 30 days if they don't pay rent or utilities.

 

I find that sometimes being on Metro runs in families.  The last one I had was on it for 25+ yrs.  She raised 3 kids on it (1 has job, 1 in prison, 1 jobless, raising more kids on Metro).  I don't like to see our tax money being spent that way.

The other 25% of Sect. 8 tenants with no problems are usually elderly or have had major life changes (divorce, lost job, medical problems).  They are only temp. on it & will soon be back on thier feet.  I could go on & on about Metro.  I only accept it for my low end units.  I'm almost to the point where I won't accept it at all.  Find a local LL's association in your area and attend one meeting (usually can do this free).  Ask local LLs about the program.  Many no longer accept it for these & many more reasons.  I could give you other websites to look at where you'd hear more (horror) stories.

While it may be hard to find good, self-supporting tenants, at least you can take them to court afterwards.  You can put it on their credit report.  When they want to buy a house yrs. later, they will come & satisfy your judgment to get it off their report.  Sect. 8 tenants don't care about their credit reports or scores.  They have no money.  Just keep looking for good tenants with good jobs, screen them VERY WELL!  In the long run, you'll be better off.

stlouislandlord

Registered:
Posts: 27
Reply with quote  #8 
man ohiolandlord, after reading that I think I'll get on section 8 Sounds like a pretty sweet deal!  I'm technically broke but can buy houses because I was a loan officer and know what mortgage companies look for, but with my actual income (not counting cashouts) i'd easily qualify, although I think i read somewhere they won't take you if they find out you own a house (easy to find out with tax records and credit report).  Hmm... maybe my gf can get the house and I can move in too, she's living off my broke ass anyway.... hmmmm....

oh well, I'll stick with craigslist people then. 

for your power problems I'd recommend either a laptop or a $30 uninterrupted power supply (UPS).  Keeps your computer on when the power goes out, and just get a cheap one because you're probably more concerned with power flickering than blackouts.  We have the same problem here and I bought one years ago and it fixed everything. 


OHlandlord

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Posts: 3,787
Reply with quote  #9 

I did have one but the dumb battery went out in it and I've just never replaced it.  You know how the power gets when we have snow like this, how's the snow there?  I'm sitting here watching it snow, AGAIN... (I'm sick of snow & shovelling.  Maybe I'll go to Arizona.  They've got automatic garnisheement in that state!  LOL)

stlouislandlord

Registered:
Posts: 27
Reply with quote  #10 
snow's not bad here, but when it does they completely ignore it like it's not happening so even a inch gets dangerous when they don't even plow or putting salt on the major highways.



stlouislandlord

Registered:
Posts: 27
Reply with quote  #11 
our problem is the stupid power company:  in the last year we've had two minor storms that caused power outages with 500,000+ people without power for many days (one was 5 days, other was 7 days).  Half a million people!  Entire city and county shutdown, many businesses and schools were either without power or their employees were without power or customers didn't have power so they were closed.  I have no idea how many millions it probably cost in taxes, lost revenue, etc, but as you could imagine the electric company is being investigated.
OHlandlord

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Posts: 3,787
Reply with quote  #12 

Hey!  I saw a snowplow go down my road today.    I live 5 miles outside town.  (Good old township drivers!)  The county won't hardly touch mine either, but our township comes to the rescue once in a while.  I was supposed to go post some notices today but I wasn't going until they plowed at least.  (I've had enough of ditches.)  2 tenants didn't pay yet.  One is always late.  She had another (LAME) excuse today.  Said she'd make a partial payment after work.  10p.m. & nothing in the box of course.  If it wasn't so cold (& so darn hard to rent in this weather) I'd tack a 3 day to her door.  Maybe that would wake her up!  She's gone as soon as the weather breaks.  The other was supposed to be moving out.  I don't have her keys yet and I got voice mail on her cell.  If no keys by Monday, I'll put a 3 day on her door too.  I've got someone waiting for that place.  Oh, the joys of being a LL.  They never cease.   By the way, the forecast calls for snow everyday until Tuesday here.

kurt

Registered:
Posts: 137
Reply with quote  #13 

Heres the beef with section 8 in columbus or maybe any where.. They wont "police' tenants, tenants can break some thing in the unit call section 8 and section 8 can hold rent payment until fixed despite obvious tenant damage/neglect. My girlfriend had done property management for 7 1/2 year before I met her and told me she tried to get the inspector to do some thing about scum bag tenants, they replied " we don't have the manpower to do such"... Ya know what section 8 can be a good ride, but if push come to shove, your gonna be shoveling it out (your bender!!!) and that wimpy deposit of oen month isn't gonna even get you enough vasiline to lube up for the intermitent  "ouchy"!..

 

Our two deplexes are in the botoms, one has one good tenant and one so/so(pays rent halla luja!!!But is filthy.. Oh well I consider myself lucky on this duplex. Sorry to hear about that dead beat.. I tend not to be a total law abiding landlord, I wont be a slum lord, but on that same coin if I'm geting done wrong by some dirt bag, I'm gonna be creative.. Been thru o'l navy and learnt the laws are there to be guides with senisibility inserted when it seems safe enough...Meaning logically think it through and wiegh the penalty probability of dirt bag geting a lawyer on me about "bending" laws to get em out faster with less pain to bender.

 

Being a landlord out this nick of woods seems to be a real challenge (put nicely), but in AZ, my brother and friend had done extreemly good.. Lucky bastadges, or a better court system and better wage garnishment system help em? I don't know, maybe I'm to direct (political career is prolly out of question   ).

kurt

Registered:
Posts: 137
Reply with quote  #14 

Oh yeah Lisa and I have to work full time jobs 12/13 an hour cause legal system favors dirt bag tenants, and the wage garnishment system is a failure. not to mention our all favorite welfare train riders... Jesus wept! I wish there was a test to take before having kids cause most of these welfare riders would fail it! I know what you mean about the welfare riders, they breed more and more, despite they can't make the first oen or two behave, or even pay for the first one... I try to keep it to a minimum on accepting or helping those trying to get rent help, but I'm not faced with trying to get 72 dana rent help cause he and she are total knukle heads! Neither has kids of their own, one or two from some part of their family, but nothing they can claim, and she doesn't work, he less than a week from rent due gets a job at buger king (praise the.. oh screw it gimme the devil 7 come 11!), and he makes maybe 600 a month..rent is 550.. You figure it out, I'm screwed and paying the mortgage yet again out of Lisa and my pay trying to get this fool couple some assistance while I try to find and even bigger sucker to buy this looser magnet for a duplex...

kurt

Registered:
Posts: 137
Reply with quote  #15 

By the way Oh landlord, I lived in Arizona for about 15 years, and have family there.. Yes they do have automatic wage garnishment, it  might be a nice force/leverage tool.. Won't help with some, but makes it a lot easier, and I have tried talking state rep dan stweart and senator(forget his name) into changing our system, but dan stweart gave me a a few seconds, senator.. please I might as well ty to set a time to set down with god and the devil to talk about world peace with a case of beer to help negotiations..

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