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Roommate not on lease; abandoned room and car. Now wants access?

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A year ago, I needed a roommate to help with expenses. I let my friend's brother, who had been living in his car for a year, to move in to my extra room. As I have only a month - to - month lease (which technically expired 2 years ago), I made no changes to the legal paperwork when he moved in. I did not charge him a deposit, either, only requiring that he pay current rent when due. I did get the permission of the landlord, who is very "hands off" in terms of property management (she collects the rent and makes emergency repairs, everything else is at the will and expense of the tenant).

In June this year, my roommate decided to help a friend in a city 2 hours away by staying with the friend and his family for several months. He explained his intention of continuing to pay rent here and leave his things, including a car in my drive that has not run since a week after he moved in. We agreed to set up PayPal accounts so that he could pay the rent directly to me, as we pay the rent in cash (and get a receipt). He payed July's rent late due to problems with navigating PayPal and I got permission for him to mail the following month's payment directly to the landlord. He paid August late. The landlord did not receive a check for September until October, and that check did not clear the bank (it bounced) but the landlord did not inform me of this problem until October 22nd. On October 12th, the roommate texted to tell me he was giving me his 30 days notice to move out. I accepted it with well wishes. A week later he texted yo say his situation had changed and he might want to come back. I told him I would give him a week to consider, but received no reply. No check was recieved for October or to replace the bounced check (and fees). When my landlord told me about the bounced check (September rent) and the lack of payment (October rent) I texted to let the roommate know that the check for September had bounced and that no check had been received for October and that he would need to pay both amounts, plus late fees, in addition to November's rent. I recieved no reply from the roommate regarding this information. I texted, emailed, and used social media to request that he call me to discuss the situation.

At the beginning of November he blocked my calls and removed me from his social media sites. The landlord agreed to begin legal action to get the title on the car he abandoned in lieu of the unpayed rent. Last week, I cleaned all of the things he left out of the room and stored them in the garage (a considerable amount of work as he didn't clean anything before he left).

Today, I received a text from the roommate stating that he was kicked out of his friend's home and living on the streets. I texted back that i wasn't able to help, as he had not responded to my requests the previous month regarding rent. He is now threatening to take legal action against me (for what, I don't know).

My question here is: what legal rights do I have regarding his access to my home and what should I do with his things, including the car that doesn't run (legally speaking)? How should I proceed?

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Seems to me that the sub-tenancy terminated as a result of the 10/12/15 notice and the lack of resolution following the subsequent change of mind, and you certainly should allow him to recover his personal property, unless you want to file a lawsuit for the unpaid rent and seek a prejudgment attachment order.

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I have no problem with allowing him to access the things he left in the house; as I stated, I stored them in the garage. He seems to think he should be allowed access to my house,though, which I am not comfortable allowing, as I considered him a friend and then he started acting hostile and threatening.

Also, what recourse do I have in collecting the back rent? Am I legally responsible for the amount he left unpaid?

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what recourse do I have in collecting the back rent? Am I legally responsible for the amount he left unpaid?

 

In the absence of agreement to the contrary with your landlord, you owe the landlord for 100% of the rent and can sue your former sub-tenant for any unpaid rent.

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 He is now threatening to take legal action against me (for what, I don't know).

 

 

This guy is living on the streets and does not appear to be able to come up with money for current (let alone back rent owed), and you really believe his threats to take legal action? And he is going to retain an attorney how? I doubt this individual has the wherewithal to figure out small claims court (not that he has a valid cause of action. Send him a communication in whatever form you have available to reach him and give him a set time to retrieve his belongings from the garage. I wouldn't recommend letting him inside the premises. Does he still have a key? You might want to pay to have the locks changed (with your landlord's permission, of course). Sounds like the landlord is taking care of removing the car. Let him know he needs to move it, but tell him that you otherwise have nothing to do with the car. You could sue him in small claims for the rent he owes (you are obligated to pay the landlord, as noted above), but if he has no address and no money, you'll probably never be able to collect (the court does not make someone play).

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