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Old 01-24-2006, 05:05 PM  
KCChiefsMan KCChiefsMan is offline
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Renters Question (legal & financial)

ok I have been thinking about this for quite some time, I have not consulted with a lawyer yet. I want to move out of the house I have been living in for the past 5 years (this is my 6th year of living here). There are many things wrong with this house, it's not an apartment of duplex, it's a 3 bedroom house with a large unfinished basement and 1 car gargage.

Me and my roommate who has also lived here for same amount of time as me, are worried that we may be obligated to pay for all of the things that are wrong with the place. The carpet is bad, the garage door doesn't work, the back patio is kinda broken (but it was like that when we moved in), the plumbing is bad, a lot of leaks that go down into the basement. The paint job on the exterior is bad. If I owned the house this never would have happened because I would have had all that done myself, but I don't want to pay for major jobs on a house I do not own.

We're just worried that all of the wear and tear over the past 6 years may come back to haunt us. The landlord hasn't done anything at all, I wish we haven't lived here this long. I replaced the washer & dryer that broke down a couple of years ago because the landlord wouldn't, and the washer & dryer that we moved into were probably made in the 1980's. The landlord is kind of a douche, and we are worried that he may try to charge us thousands of dollars when we move out in August.

Does anybody have any experience with this? is there some wear and tear clause that would prevent us from being obligated for most of the major things that are wrong? I imagine that we will lose our security deposit of $900 which is fine, and I wouldn't mind paying a little bit, but not for major repairs that really aren't our fault. Like I said, I think it would have been stupid on our part to fix up the house that we don't own.

any advice would be great
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Old 01-24-2006, 05:09 PM   #2
wutamess wutamess is offline
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& why can't you just move once your contract is up?
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Old 01-24-2006, 05:11 PM   #3
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Considering how you like to post pictures of yourself online, you might look back and see if you have any pics of the house when you first moved in to demonstrate damage that was present when you moved in.
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Old 01-24-2006, 05:12 PM   #4
KCChiefsMan KCChiefsMan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wutamess
& why can't you just move once your contract is up?

well we can, but we're just worried that he may try to charge us for stuff that I don't think he should. like exterior paint, plumbing, carpet, garage door, and other stuff I can't think of right now
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Old 01-24-2006, 05:13 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fat Elvis
Considering how you like to post pictures of yourself online, you might look back and see if you have any pics of the house when you first moved in to demonstrate damage that was present when you moved in.

unfortunately I do not
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Old 01-24-2006, 05:19 PM   #6
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The property is his and unless there is some pretty special and possibly illegal language in the contract then all maintenance of the property is his problem. Part of what you expect when you rent a property is that you will have to do the maintenance.

1. I wouldn't worry about it.
2. If you kept the old, busted down washer and drier those would be the ones I'd leave. If you didn't keep them then I'd start talking to him about a deduction on your final rent payment for the value of the new ones.

The only way any of this comes back to bite you is if he can show that you knocked down a wall or some other intentional or grossly negligent action.
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Old 01-24-2006, 05:21 PM   #7
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Carpet, paint, etc is maintenance and up to the landlord to take care of. Unless you knocked a hole in the wall or something that you had to intentionally do, you're not liable.
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Old 01-24-2006, 05:22 PM   #8
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Get a lawyer to be on the safe side.
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Old 01-24-2006, 05:25 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiefsCountry
Get a lawyer to be on the safe side.
Don't pay money to a bloodsucker until the landlord makes a stink. He probably owns other properties that he lets go to s**t, too. Odds are this is nothing new for him.
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Old 01-24-2006, 07:08 PM   #10
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Hell, if this guy has been collecting rent from you guys for 5 years without having to lift a finger to maintain the place or have to listen to a bunch of whining, he's way ahead of the game, as long as you didn't do anything to trash the place.

You guys are probably his favorite tenants.
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Old 01-24-2006, 07:17 PM   #11
KCChiefsMan KCChiefsMan is offline
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we haven't asked the landlord for much at all, and we've paid the rent on time every single month we've lived here. The place isn't trashed by any means, it definately needs a new carpet, paint job, back patio needs work, the basement is actually much cleaner from when we moved in here, there was about a half of a foot of dirt over the cement and we cleared that out when we moved in. Garage door does not work at all though, the plumbing leaks. I dunno, I usually try to prepare for the worst in situations like this, he probably doesn't even remember the condition of the place when we moved in, the main thing is the carpet......
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Old 01-24-2006, 07:23 PM   #12
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If you have a lease, without at "out" clause....you're obligated to it.

If you've done damage, beyond the "normal wear and tear", you're liable for it.

What does that mean? If you burned food to the stove cups, you're liable....if there is normal foot traffic wearing over the 6 years, you're not, however if you stained it up, you're liable. If you knock holes in the wall, break windows, gouge the drywall, rip screens, break doors, leave dumptruck loads of crap....you're liable........at least as far as not getting back your damage deposit.

if the roof is leaking....not your fault. If you got drunk and ran into the garage door and knocked it off..its your fault.

I've been on both ends....lived as a tenent, helped parents manage properties for years, and this fall, physically evicted another douchebag who destroyed a house and owed 6 months rent.

It would take quite a bit for them to be able to get anything beyond damage deposit, unless say, you had a party and DESTROYED the house.

2 sides to every story.
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Old 01-24-2006, 07:23 PM   #13
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I agree with Simplex, you don't have anything invested in it except the deposit.

Unless you signed a really ****ed up lease, you can let the thing crumble and not have to pay anything other than rent.

In fact, since you invested in a new W&D, you may be entitled to something extra.

If he doesn't agree, take the W&D with you and tell the assh0le to take it out of your deposit, which you probably won't get back anyway.
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Old 01-24-2006, 07:27 PM   #14
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Are you a KU student? Student legal services at the Law School can help you out on this. A lot of this is going to depend on what your lease agreement says. Generally, you are not liable for normal wear and tear, especially anything on the outside.
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Old 01-24-2006, 07:27 PM   #15
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Never count on getting your deposit back. The W/D is definitely yours. Take it. Everything else is on him.

I wouldn't even give it a second thought.
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