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Wed Feb 20, 2013, 08:45 PM

Let's Lynch The Landlord...

This is probably misposted, but I wanted to be corrected sooner rather than later, so here it sits in GD. But then, abuses of the ownership class are certainly current events, n'est-ce pas?

So here's what's happening in Woodstock, GA, where a friend of my wife's lives. Apparently, there are no laws in Georgia to protect renters from predatory landlords.

After three years, her rent is going up precipitously at the end of the current lease. In days. Going up a total of FIFTY PERCENT since inception, with a threat of an even higher rate if she lets the lease lapse and then signs a new one. She's a returning college student, 51, a single mom with a low-paying job, a deadbeat ex and a nine-year-old son. The kicker? Her son has Asperger's, so on top of the surprise rentjacking, she's having difficulties finding another place on short notice once the uneducated provincial swine of her adopted city find out her son has special needs. No, I don't know how it comes up.

Her neighbors are already refusing to let their kids play with hers. You know... Because of Sandy Hook and that shooter's history of autism. Yes, really. It just gets worse, doesn't it?

Ideas? Remedies? All I have to offer in the way of help is to cast a line.

12 replies, 976 views

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Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
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Arrow 12 replies Author Time Post
Reply Let's Lynch The Landlord... (Original post)
cactusfractal Feb 2013 OP
Tikki Feb 2013 #1
cactusfractal Feb 2013 #7
Tikki Feb 2013 #12
RebelOne Feb 2013 #2
cactusfractal Feb 2013 #8
msanthrope Feb 2013 #3
cactusfractal Feb 2013 #9
guardian Feb 2013 #4
cactusfractal Feb 2013 #11
2naSalit Feb 2013 #5
guardian Feb 2013 #6
cactusfractal Feb 2013 #10

Response to cactusfractal (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 08:57 PM

1. Sounds like the landlord wants her out....

Last edited Thu Feb 21, 2013, 12:15 PM - Edit history (1)

..for whatever reason.
The friend of your wife needs to look for another place, today.
What she can do is tell the landlord she is actively looking
and wants a letter of recommendation from him/her.

See what happens there..
This kind of situation just sucks for mom and son.


Tikki
p s ...it's "Let's Lynch the Landlord, man"....

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Response to Tikki (Reply #1)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 12:06 PM

7. Not on my copy of Fresh Fruit For Rotting Vegetables it isn't...

Thanks

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Response to cactusfractal (Reply #7)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 12:11 PM

12. Very last verse...different than the first...

"F F f R V" one of the best albums ever.



Tikki

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Response to cactusfractal (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 09:12 PM

2. I live in Woodstock also.

I live in a mobile home park. I own my trailer and only pay $378 for lot rent, which includes water and garage pickup, but there are some homes here that are rent to buy. Tell your friend to call the Noonday Valley Mobile Home Park. Sheila is the manager. They are not picky about who they rent to as long as the renter has the money. But most here are really nice people. We do not have any crime because the management is very stringent.

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Response to RebelOne (Reply #2)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 12:06 PM

8. Thanks tons

I passed that on to her.....

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Response to cactusfractal (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 09:16 PM

3. Here's a handbook on Georgia Law, and a listing of legal aid offices.

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Response to msanthrope (Reply #3)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 12:07 PM

9. I don't know more detail...

But thank you!

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Response to cactusfractal (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 09:25 PM

4. Some thoughts

 

Full disclosure here...I am a landlord with multiple residential units. I don't know what state or local regulations that apply there. However, based on Colorado state law and my local laws, all of what you described could be perfectly legal here. I'm also assuming everything you described is legal and in compliance with the written lease.

If rent is going up 50% then I assume market conditions will actually support that. This might could be verified by calling around or asking some of the neighbors what their rent is.

If your friend has been a good tenant (i.e., paid on time, no neighbor complaints, no police calls, no damage to unit) then the best approach may be to explain to the landlord that she is having trouble finding a new place. Then ask for an extension of one month at the current rate. In return she promises to be out on time and leave the place clean and in good condition. That might buy her a little time to find a place and save her some money. From the landlord's point of view having a smooth turnover, with minimal vacancy, and no damage may outweigh getting extra $$$ for one month particularly for a good tenant. If she has been perceived as a trouble tenant then this probably won't work.

Between the rent increase and neighbor kids not playing with her kid then she is probably better off moving.

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Response to guardian (Reply #4)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 12:08 PM

11. Thanks much!

All such advice passed on to her and much appreciated from all....

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Response to cactusfractal (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 09:33 PM

5. To me

it smells like a kind of discrimination that might be hard to fight or prove... but it smells of discrimination.

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Response to 2naSalit (Reply #5)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 09:59 PM

6. I don't get that

 

If it was discrimination then why did the landlord rent to the person in the first place? Also, the OP states that the landlord is willing to renew the lease...just at the higher rate.

Now a 50% rent increase is unusual. It could be the landlord is using the rent increase to get the person to move. Sometimes one has a pain in the ass tenant and the best option is just to wait until the end of lease and then either give written notice that you do not intended to renew the lease. Doing it this way the landlord is under no obligation to have a reason...just that they want to take back possession is sufficient. But a tenant may be borderline and you'd rather they move but would be willing to continue renting to them if you had some extra money to make up for whatever the problem issue may be.

But there could be legitimate business reasons for a big rent increase. Maybe a tight rental market? Maybe the landlord made significant improvements to justify a rent increase? Maybe taxes, utilities, other costs have increased dramatically? Maybe it has been multiple years without an increase and one is way past due?

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Response to 2naSalit (Reply #5)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 12:07 PM

10. ya think?

Yeaaaaaaahhhhh.....

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