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BROKEN LEASE (by OTTER [KY]) Jun 15, 2011 10:56 AM
       BROKEN LEASE (by Sue S. [IL]) Jun 15, 2011 1:09 PM
       BROKEN LEASE (by in [IN]) Jun 15, 2011 5:27 PM
       BROKEN LEASE (by Mike45 [NV]) Jun 15, 2011 8:36 PM
       BROKEN LEASE (by otter [KY]) Jun 16, 2011 11:15 AM
       BROKEN LEASE (by Tom [IN]) Jun 17, 2011 10:50 AM
       BROKEN LEASE (by Mike45 [NV]) Jun 17, 2011 10:52 AM
       BROKEN LEASE (by otter [KY]) Jun 17, 2011 4:51 PM

BROKEN LEASE (by OTTER [KY]) Posted on: Jun 15, 2011 10:56 AM

State Specific Question About: KENTUCKY (KY)

Reposting from the general board for state-specific advice for Kentucky: tenant who just RENEWED a year's lease (I didn't let it revert to M2M, but instead had him sign up for another year specifically because I didn't want to HAVE to find a new tenant) tells me he's quitting both of his jobs (that's right; two of them), leaving town, and moving into "his house" in the sticks. His last rent check bounced (he had emailed that "it might" because he's "broke for reasons" he'd "rather not explain) and he says he cannot pay me anymore money. I explained that he owned not only the rent payment and rent for every month he signed up for unless and until I re-rent, but also now a bounced check fee, late fees (all per his lease), and any damages that I find after he vacates. He answers to just keep the last month's rent (which I secured upon move-in) and his security deposit, as he cannot pay any more. I'm sure I can re-rent it quickly and am tempted to just let it go at this. What are the laws here and your advice?

BROKEN LEASE (by Sue S. [IL]) Posted on: Jun 15, 2011 1:09 PM

You say you have another month's rent and a security deposit? If he is willing to get out ASAP and you feel confident that you can rerent quickly, then you really aren't losing anything - assuming that there aren't any significant damages.

This would be easier than an eviction and all that is involved with that.

BROKEN LEASE (by in [IN]) Posted on: Jun 15, 2011 5:27 PM

Let him go, take him to court later, writing a check with out funds in the account is a crime, even in KY.

Main thing you need is a new tenant, paying rent...

BROKEN LEASE (by Mike45 [NV]) Posted on: Jun 15, 2011 8:36 PM

Be aware that if you have to evict him, you are probably letting him out of the rest of time left on the lease.

That depends on state law and how things are worded, but I never sweat over the tenent's obligation under the lease. If he isn't paying, I want him out ASAP, so I get it turned around and rented to a better paying tenant. (Given the huge loss of jobs in NV, I have lost a lot of Ts who were good Ts until they lost their jobs and could no longer afford the rent.) If a T can't pay his rent, how likely is it that I will be able to collect anything from him if I tried to enforce his obligation to pay until I found a new tenant?

BROKEN LEASE (by otter [KY]) Posted on: Jun 16, 2011 11:15 AM

Agree with all; as long as he doesn't leave the place wrecked, good riddance. I won't be out any money and will be rid of a bad tenant.

But here's my question: why not just use a M2M versus year's lease if the "obligation" is only illusory? They're still going to leave when they feel like it, and there's really isn't much you can do about it (or that's worth doing).

Why not just secure last month's rent and security and use a monthy agreement that will also free YOU up to kick out a bad one? --162.114.x.xx

BROKEN LEASE (by Tom [IN]) Posted on: Jun 17, 2011 10:50 AM

Does he really own a house in the sticks? In his own name? Ask him for his forwarding address, then check the ownership. Sue him for breach of lease, then go after his house in the sticks. Bet he'll find the money then. Tom

BROKEN LEASE (by Mike45 [NV]) Posted on: Jun 17, 2011 10:52 AM

Otter, that is a good question. I guess the answer is that tenants might feel obligated to stay for a year if they have a one year lease.

Given the cost to rehab, and the vacancy time and the cost and hassles of finding new tenants, I want a place to be occupied for at least one year. So a one yaer lease at least gives me the pretense that it will be occupied for a year.

I do find that most of my tenants do stay for at least a year. In the past few years, with the economy in the toilet, there are more people leaving in breach of their lease, when they get laid off and can't make the rent. But most do stay for at least one year (and many for more than a decade -- we just lost one of those on June 1, and have a major rehab planned!) It is in large part a question of screening. Screening can't predict job loss or divorce, but it can show you otherwise stable people who are likely to honor their contracts.

BROKEN LEASE (by otter [KY]) Posted on: Jun 17, 2011 4:51 PM

The other possibility is that he figures, like many tenants, that I already have the last month's rent, so he doesn't need to pay me for the last month. Not sure the "illusion" of having a tenant for a year is worth having my hands tied in case I want to get rid of one.

Previously I did a M2M unless the tenant particularly wanted a year and, if he/she looked good, I'd do. This one DID want a lease and, with two jobs (one a teaching position) looked good. A total hassle to turn over; always makes me want to sell the place and run off to the sticks (will look into that, Tom)... --162.114.x.xx

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