Foreclosures Continue To Harm Renters

Foreclosures Continue To Harm RentersA recent report by the National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty stated that nearly 20 percent of all foreclosures are rental properties and that 40 percent of all families evicted because of foreclosure are renters. In an effort to soften the foreclosure blow to renters, the federal government passed the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act (PTFA) which prohibits landlords from evicting tenants without proper notice.  The PTFA requires the following:

  • Tenants impacted by foreclosure must be allowed to remain in the property until their lease expires.
  • Tenants who do not have a lease, or who have a month-to-month lease must be given a 90 day notice to vacate the property.
  • Whoever owns the property must continue to maintain it. This means that even if a bank takes over the property, they are required to deliver basic maintenance in accordance to the lease.
  • If you live in Seattle, the new landlord may not evict you before the 60 days are up unless you have violated the lease in some way, such as failing to pay rent.

But despite PTFA, there are some drawbacks that remain.  For example, if your landlord failed to refund your security deposit or transfer the money to the new owner, you may be required to pay another deposit to remain in the property.  However, the old landlord will still be liable to you for the money they failed to return. The catch is that you may need to sue them to collect on that liability.

 

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