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Thread: Landlord and tenant relationship

  1. #21
    On a cupcake mission! Lois Lane's Avatar
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    Re: Landlord and tenant relationship

    I think the new owner has to honor whatever your contract was with the old owner...so no, it's not your responsibility. Just curious, but do you think the other tenant--the woman--also is being pushed to mow the lawn? My guess is no. But I guess the question is--can you live with a nasty looking lawn and if not, is it worth your while to work out some kind of arrangement: you'll mow the lawn once every two weeks if they supply the lawn mower and offer you some kind of compensation ($$ off your monthly rent). Of course, you'd still have to haul the lawn mower in and out of the basement. Could you talk to the new owner and simply ask if they've hired a service to take care of lawn maintenance?

  2. #22
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    Re: Landlord and tenant relationship

    My hubby and I own a couple of rental units. Two of them are four unit apartments; one is a house converted into two units. He does all the yard work... lawn mowing, shoveling sidewalks and walkways in the winter. He does drop off bags of rock salt to each building and asks one of the tenants to just throw some on the steps when the weather demands it. He also leaves a shovel near the doors so that tenants can shovel off the stairs. The city these apartments are in has a law that all sidewalks must be cleared within 24 hours of a snowstorm.

    We also own another house which we rent out to my daughter and two of her friends. (We'd rather she pay US rent than someone else! ) That yard is quite large so we gave them our old riding mower and they do the lawn work themselves. They also are responsible for shoveling etc. Hubby does go there when he can to help them out, but it is primarily their responsibility.

    I don't know how you pay your rent....whether you mail it to the new landlord or he/she stops by to pick it up. But if you mail your check, I would write a little note asking when they are going to get around to mowing the yard as it is starting to look a bit messy. If they stop in to pick up the check, I would just ask when they are going to get around to it. The look on his/her face when you ask such a question will probably answer your question. Then I would just say, "Hey the yardwork is the landlord's responsibility and see what they say."

    ETA: Our first house, when we were first married had what we called a "postage stamp size" yard and the first year we did actually use a weed wacker to trim the lawn. I think the next year, my dad was getting a new mower, so he gave us his old one.

    Let us know what happens!

  3. #23
    Miz Smarty Britches queenb's Avatar
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    Re: Landlord and tenant relationship

    The last two places I rented had lawns that I had to care for myself.However, this was explained before I signed the lease in both cases.
    If you do get a mower, don't get the manual one--they don't work well when the grass is more than an inch or so tall, making you have to mow every few days. Of course you could cut down on mowing by following my lawn care plan. That means no fertilizing, watering, seeding etc. Something green will grow and if you cut it close who can tell? Less cutting, and if you get a drought in the hot part of summer, you can stop mowing altogether until later. It's the Mother Nature Non Polluting Plan. (Or, the Lazy Way)

    Seriously, though, maybe if you ask the landlord they might know someone who won't charge too much to keep the yard in reasonable condition. Surely they don't expect you to hire a full service lawn care service or else be out there for hours yourself every week!
    I have found the Truth and it doesn't make sense.

  4. #24
    Premium Member DesertRose's Avatar
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    Re: Landlord and tenant relationship

    John, if your lease has not been renewed with the new landlord, then she is responsible for the lawn (since your old lease stated that you weren't). However, she might not know, so I suggest you just ask her if she found somebody to take care of the land of is she is going to do it. Take it from there. If you are willing to do it yourself eventually, I like the idea of having them buy the landmower and deducting an amount from your rent.

    As for my problems with the tenant, the couch is still in my backyard, but my husband and I decided to make a statement. Since I thought putting it out on the curb would be a little drastic (someone will have it picked up within 15 minutes), I told my husband to put it in their little balcony. It is now in a weird position, half on their balcony and half on their stairs, which will make them work harder to move it around. My only worry is that it blocks their emergency door, but there is no other solution, really. I will also send them a registered letter saying that they were lucky this time. Next time I find something on my land, it will go straight to the curb. I'm not sure she's been home the last couple of days or if she even noticed, but I'm expecting a phone call or a ring at my door eventually.

    I still worry I went too far, but what other choice did I have? Can I get into trouble, legally?

  5. #25
    FORT Fogey famita's Avatar
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    Re: Landlord and tenant relationship

    Unfortunately it seems that everything must be spelled out in the lease/rental agreement. John, I would say that if your lease spells out that you do not mow grass, bring that to her attention. If it was a gentleman's agreement, you might have a little problem. DesertRose, if the couch is hindering her from her emergency exit, I don't know. She shouldn't have a couch in the yard, either. Maybe send her a registered letter stating that from now on any furniture, trash (and anything else you can think of) left in the yard will be towed away at her expense. Some people you have to lead by the hand.

  6. #26
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    Re: Landlord and tenant relationship

    It is my understanding that any new owner must honor the lease agreement already in place when they buy the property. They can then re-negotiate terms when your lease is up.
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  7. #27
    Premium Member DesertRose's Avatar
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    Re: Landlord and tenant relationship

    Quote Originally Posted by famita;2355738;
    DesertRose, if the couch is hindering her from her emergency exit, I don't know.
    I spoke to my hubby and he reassured me that she is still able to open her emergency exit door.

  8. #28
    FORT Fogey katgib13's Avatar
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    Re: Landlord and tenant relationship

    Quote Originally Posted by DesertRose;2355776;
    I spoke to my hubby and he reassured me that she is still able to open her emergency exit door.
    Then I wouldn't sweat it, sweetie. If she can safely exit her apartment in case of an emergency, then I'd say you were well within your rights to place it on her balcony.

  9. #29
    Trouble in my life just1paul's Avatar
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    Re: Landlord and tenant relationship

    Anytime I've lived in a duplex the people leasing the downstairs unit always had to do exterior upkeep. IE: lawnmowing and snow removal taking out trash cans from yards etc. It also was my understanding in the past that when ownership changes, the new owners need to create a new lease to change the terms, usually resulting in a rent increase and other stipulations.

    DesertRose- If the exit is not fully openable in case of emergency it can be a fire code violation.
    I'd say get that registered letter sent.

  10. #30
    The race is back! John's Avatar
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    Re: Landlord and tenant relationship

    My lease is a 1-year lease, and sale of the property shouldn't mean a new lease, right? I mean, if I wanted, I could stay here through September, refusing to sign any new lease with different terms, as I have a legal contract to do so.

    I mail in my check, so I've included a little note in the memo to please arrange for lawn care - hopefully that will be enough. I'm just annoyed at the lack of current maintenance.

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