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30 Day Notice


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#1 KansasTenant

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 05:18 AM

We are leasing a duplex home which is owned by one of the landlords inlaws who are a family owned leasing property agency. Our lease ended May of last year. We've been renting month to month. On March 25th the landlord called me after 3 pm stating that the inlaw has placed the duplex for sale with a Real Estate Agency and that he would be contacting us to show the house. When I asked why we weren't provided adequate notice that they were selling the property, such as; 30 day notice, her response was she just found out herself. The landlord did not give us a 30 day notice, nor did they allow us the option to; either move or to purchase the home.


The following day March 26th,(less than 24 hrs) the Real Estate Agent contacted me to arrange a time to come by to take measurements and photos of the home. I expressed to both the Agent and the landlord that we were not comfortable with him taking photos of our personal belongings inside the home and we were not comfortable having strangers walk through our personal space. (Six months ago a neighbor was sexually assaulted in her home and another resident down the street was also assaulted.) At this point I felt that we weren't even given a fair amount of time to find another home. So the past two weeks we began scrambling to find a home in this area so we could keep our children in the same school. Prior to this information we received, we noticed that all the homes but two in this area were already leased. Due to the lack of notice we received we were fortunate enough to find one property (by the skin of our teeth) and because we wanted to make sure we gave our landlord a 30 day notice, we had to find a homeowner who would allow us to move in by May 1st.


I personally gave the landlord a typed-written 30 day notice dated April 6th for our move out date for May 6th. I made two copies; one for the landlord and one for our records. Both copies were signed by my wife and myself. While I was waiting for my landlord to finish reading our 30 day notice letter, I requested the landlord sign our copy to show that we were all in an agreement to our move out date, as well as to show that she received it.


Later that evening approx. 6 pm, the landlord called me stating that she made a mistake and claimed that she didn't read our notice (but I watched her read it!) before she signed it. She told me that we couldn't move out until June 1st. She stated that we had to provide her a 30 day notice before the first of the month. I expressed to her that it was only a 5 day window and they were selling the property, what difference would it make? She stated that based upon our former lease agreement that we had to give her notice before the 1st. She even commented to the fact that even though she signed off on our 30 day notice that we couldn't move until June 1st. I told her that it was too late that she accepted our 30 day notice when she signed it, that she could not change our move out date.


On April 14th, we received a letter (by USPS poste dated April 9) at our current home address from our landlord. In the envelope was her original copy of our 30 day notice in which she crossed out May 1st and hand wrote in red ink "June 1st" and enclosed a photocopy of the first page of our expired lease agreement highlighted in red ink regarding the 30 day notice requirements. However, she failed to include the 2nd page of the lease agreement which implicates another paragraph that states we must provide notice when we normally pay rent which is by the 1st up to the 5th of each month.


My question is; Can she change the move out date on our 30 day notice without our consent? Would this be considered legal? Also can she keep our deposit if she fails to do a walk through inspection with us on May 6th? I've never had a landlord dispute a 30 day notice before, what are our options and how should we handle this without being confrontational.



#2 Fallen

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 08:07 AM

Quite a bit too much extraneous detail there.

Does your lease have the landlord agreeing to provide X notice when putting the house up for sale?  If not, the law won't require any notice about that.  It may provide that the landlord has to give you X notice or "reasonable" notice about viewings.



"The landlord did not give us a 30 day notice, nor did they allow us the option to; either move or to purchase the home."

It's not obligated to do any of those things.


"Six months ago a neighbor was sexually assaulted in her home and another resident down the street was also assaulted."

This isn't really relevant, I'm afraid.

"At this point I felt that we weren't even given a fair amount of time to find another home."

Again, I'm confused about the notion that you'd think them selling the place has anything to do with you having to move out.


Doesn't matter if someone read something before acknowledging they received a notice (and they didn't have to sign anything in the first place, but never mind).

Obviously, no one has control over when you move out.  What your lease requires in terms of manner of termination notice, the timing of it, etc., I couldn't tell you.  If the letter says that by signing it the landlord's agreeing to what it says, you're fine.


"However, she failed to include the 2nd page of the lease agreement which implicates another paragraph that states we must provide notice when we normally pay rent which is by the 1st up to the 5th of each month."

Not sure why you think this makes a difference.


 "Can she change the move out date on our 30 day notice without our consent?"

You aren't obligated to worry about what she did after the fact; what you need to worry about is what the letter says that indicates she's accepting what the letter says.


"Also can she keep our deposit if she fails to do a walk through inspection with us on May 6th?"

COULD it happen?  Sure.  Would it be lawful or actionable?  That's a different question.  If you've complied with the contract terms, you oughtn't have a problem prevailing if you have to sue for your deposit.


I wouldn't worry about being confrontational.  What your options are depends on what your goal is.  See above.


I'll echo PG's advisory "warning" with a twist: (Many) legal issues are complicated. Explanations and comments here might not fully identify or explain the ramifications of your particular problem. I do not give legal advice as such (and such is impermissible here at any rate). Comments are based on personal knowledge and experience and legal info gleaned over a quarter century, and every state has differing laws on and avenues to address most topics.  If you need legal advice, you need to consult (and pay) a professional so that you may have someone to hold accountable.  Acting on personal and informational advice from a stranger on the internet is a bad idea -- at least not without your own thorough due dilience/research and confirmation as it applies to your situation.  :)


#3 KansasTenant

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 12:02 PM

Does your lease have the landlord agreeing to provide X notice when putting the house up for sale? If not, the law won't require any notice about that. It may provide that the landlord has to give you X notice or "reasonable" notice about viewings.



  • No.


"Six months ago a neighbor was sexually assaulted in her home and another resident down the street was also assaulted."
This isn't really relevant, I'm afraid.




  • My apologies, I didn't finish that paragragh. I made this statement in reference as to why we don't want strangers in our home. Realtors do not screen each person who requests to see the home. ( the Real Estate Agent confirmed)

"At this point I felt that we weren't even given a fair amount of time to find another home."
Again, I'm confused about the notion that you'd think them selling the place has anything to do with you having to move out.




  • It has everything to do with us moving out. Homes lease very quickly in this location. If we had known much sooner than later that they would be selling the home, we would have had more choices to find a rental home in this area. By the time this home sells to an individual, the new owners would give us a 30 day notice to vacate at the drop of a hat. The home hasn't sold yet and as of today, the rental homes in this location are all rented. If I hadn't leased the new house a few days ago, we would have had to relocate? I'm not going to uproot my children from their school or our community. Aside from the fact, not everyone has $3500.00 cash floating around to move on a whim. We have to allocate this in our budget to move. Needless to say, it's real expensive to move nowadays.

Doesn't matter if someone read something before acknowledging they received a notice (and they didn't have to sign anything in the first place, but never mind).




  • I'm not sure if they had to sign it or not. But by signing it, they agreed to our notice for the specified move out date? Correct? Clearly I'm asking if this protects us over anything else. Also, out of curiousity if they sold the home on the 5th, why would it be any different than the new homeowners giving us a notice from the 6th to the 6th? They would still have to give us our full deposit back. At least we've always been under the impression that the walk through is vital to recieving your deposit back.

"However, she failed to include the 2nd page of the lease agreement which implicates another paragraph that states we must provide notice when we normally pay rent which is by the 1st up to the 5th of each month." Not sure why you think this makes a difference.




  • The difference is the first page refers to a paragragh on the 2nd page which stipulates rent is due on the 1st through the 5th, after the 5th day late fees apply and will not to exceed 15 days.

"Can she change the move out date on our 30 day notice without our consent?"

You aren't obligated to worry about what she did after the fact; what you need to worry about is what the letter says that indicates she's accepting what the letter says.




  • Are you referring to the original 30 day notice we gave her or her copy she mailed back to us? Isn't the landlord suppose to go by OUR notice we give her? She cannot give herself a 30 day notice on our behalf.

"Also can she keep our deposit if she fails to do a walk through inspection with us on May 6th?"

COULD it happen? Sure. Would it be lawful or actionable? That's a different question. If you've complied with the contract terms, you oughtn't have a problem prevailing if you have to sue for your deposit.




  •  I'm aware it could happend. Is it legal for a landlord to refuse to inspect the home with the tenant after they've moved out? By not inspecting the home with the tenants, this is telling me they could say we didn't have the carpets cleaned, or the appliances cleaned, etc. hence having no intension of returning the deposit.  Not to mention how they could in fact give us a bad reference which would ruin our reputation as good tenants. Although I do suppose the last two landlords references would supersede over their negative reference. The difference here is that I care.

I've never had a landlord dispute a 30 day notice before, what are our options and how should we handle this without being confrontational.




  • What I mean by confrontational;  taking the landlord to court.

I wouldn't worry about being confrontational. What your options are depends on what your goal is. See above. Can you be a little more specific? (See above)


My goal is




  • to place my family in a home that's not for sale, and for long term.


  • be respectful and courteous throughout this process with the landlord.


  • accommodated the Realtor for viewings despite the inconveniences and burden it places upon my family. 

For the past 15 years of being long term renters, we have never had any issues with the last two landlords. As a matter of fact, we received personal letters from both landlords stating how much they enjoyed having us as tenants for all those years. One landlord stated they wished they had more tenants like us, and the other landlord stated that they couldn't tell anyone lived in the home because we left it in immaculate condition after our walk-through inspection. We received both deposits back without question.


 

It's really frustrating that the current landlord would take it to this level; when it shouldn't make any difference since they're selling the home anyway.

 

I read about other landlords complaining about bad tenants who don't pay rent, trash their houses all the time, yet when you actually have a good tenant, they still find something to complain about. For the sake of arguement, I want to cover my bases so that it doesn't become confrontation through court.


#4 chase11

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 01:52 PM

Iagree w/Fallon.  I'm not an attorney but I am a landlord & I don't like sound of what yours is trying to bluff you with.  Hopefully you kept copy of the 30 day notice without landlord's subsequent change. By the way it is illegal for someone else to make changes above your signature. Since the change wasn't done by you or with your consent & is not initialed by you, it won't hold up.  Meantime, I personally would not engage further with them on that subject and just go about your business of moving as you planned..  But do put that in a file along w/ its envelope & start keeping a  date & time log  from now on noting all contact just in case. It will do them no good to tell aCourt the delivery date of notice was inapplicable or  the 30 day notice itself was invalid because they recieved it on a day other than the first of the month. Even more rediculous would be claim tenants really have to pay up to 59  more days rent after landlord (or their agent) recieved 30 day notice because they only wanted to recieve notices on the first of the month.. When they may have wanted to recieve notice doen't matter....date they did recieve notice does. The lease required and they recieved 30 day notice and tough they'll have to go to all that hard work of pulling out a calculator and figure out how to prorate 5 days rent to keep out of hot water.....   Their letter back to you acknowledges their receipt & all the other nonsense in the letter doesn't matter. No need to reply.  If  they bring it up again just say you are still planning to be out on the 5th. Check the original lease & if you agreed to give access with 24 or 48 hours notice for  certain purposes, if it were me I'd cooperate for those purposes but try to set the time for when I'm home & probably call them and say come on over tomarrow at 5  before they try force an inconveniant or bad time on me.... If lease doesn't say for purpose of showing to buyers or future renters I'd politely but firmly say no to those purposes. Its not in owners best interest to show it in the chaos of an occupant preparing to move and you don't have to stop packing to clean or tide up. As for the gray area of measuring they have a right to  reasonable "inspection" w/ proper notice  &  so I'd cooperate one time (reasonable) and set a time within those 24 hours or whatever  time frame  for when I'm home & let them measure & "inspect" up to a  resonable point. Measuring  & checking for leaks under sinks is fine but not snooping  in other  cabinets or closets or taking pictures with my personal belongs or me in them. Meantime I'd turn that into opportunity to feel out if they're planning to replace carpet, paint etc. in preparing the place for sale &  then once I know all their renovation plans say then I should just vacuum when I leave? no sense shampooing this right? OK now move out day. If you're still wary or just want insurance heres how to eliminate battle over condition of premises & date you left. Get that day's newspaper, turn it to a page with a really bold headline or the biggest picture (not an add) you can find and take a close up picture ( you can vidio in addition, but you want photos you can email)  of that page making sure the date of newspaper shows clearly in your photo of that page or  snap/ vidio another close up of the newspapers date on that page with a portion of the same picture or headline in your photo. ( just so the headline/ picture can be connected  date it was published)  Now take that news page from vacant room to room photoing each one with that news page in the background. The page doesn't need to be clear in these photos, just so you can tell the newspage in the background is same page as the close up...  You've just documented the condition you left the place in. Now  immediatly email those pictures to yourself so you have record they were not taken later!  The purpose of the newspaper  in the photos is to prove they were not taken before that newspaper was printed IE they cannot be photos you took before you unpacked moving in.  Now  if your email comes in clear, take that news page with you & lock the door  & go turn over possession. Put all the keys & garage openers etc.  in an envelope  w/ letter saying you have vacated & are herby turning over possession & heres the keys etc. and here's where to mail refund of my security deposit & a note saying you expect a check & an itemization  for any deductions or whatever you want to say on that. ( they should only deduct as rent the first through and including the day you turn over possesion. )  You can lay the newspage under the envelope & photo doing that too & all the contents of the envelope & then the sealed envelope which should be addressed (in your  identifiable handwritting not typed so your envelope is distinqishable from other envelopes to the property manager or landlord whoever is the person your lease says ...  Now  deliver the envelope to the place of business hopefully during normal business hours. Ask whoever is there to sign for receipt of the envelope. They don't have to open it . Even if they won't sign for receipt,  set it down on the main desk or drop it on the floor in plain sight if you have to and walk out the door.  Snap a picture of it in their office  as you leave if you can but don't get into a confrontation.. your only goal is to leave all the keys in their possession & walk out without that envelope.... Put the newspage in your file. If you turn keys in to an agent & have the landlords # , you might give landlord a very brief curtosy call just to say you've vacated, left the place clean & turned keys into their agent's office after you've left them there.   Down the road if they are late returning your deposit or deduct for days after you turned over possession, they are subject to fine on top of reimbursing you for any legal if you have to resort to filing in court to get your deposit back. But simply emailing them a reminder of the legal deadline if they're pushing it & the pictures should get you a check pretty fast. It not worth making a big deal out of it if  they then send refund & its a little late. If they make a mistake on the math tell them what you think is correct & why. Make a copy of check before you deposit it and on back if its a deficient amount ABOVE your endorsement signature write "deposited as partial payment towards refund due" That just prevents them from claiming that you waived right to refund of addition monies by cashing it..      



#5 KansasTenant

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Posted 17 April 2012 - 03:25 AM

Thank you Fallen and Chase11 for your quick replies. Your feedback has been most helpful.




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