House deed with life estate between two parties, one has been gone for over a year.
Unless the instrument creating the life estate states otherwise, a life estate is an exclusive possessory interest in property that terminates when the life estate holder dies. Simply moving from the property does not extinguish the interest. That said, if a life estate holder is committing waste of the property, the remaindermen (holders of the remaining interest in the property that fully accrues upon the death of the life estate holder) could bring an action against the life estate holder and potentially seek full ownership of the property as a result. All of this is, of course, governed by the explicit terms, rights and obligations created when the life estate was created. I recommend that you review the document creating the various interests in the property and, perhaps, get opinion of counsel if you fear the property is in jeopardy. Best of luck to you.See question
Since there is special assessment coming in October and they want to know who is paying for it ( in writing). I wont own it then, should I be responsible let for it?
Most parties in a real estate transaction involving a condominium will come to some form of agreement on upcoming special assessments. If I were representing the buyer, I would request the disclosure of upcoming special assessments so that my client can be made aware of them and potentially negotiate for their payment. You should look to your purchase and sale agreement regarding your particular agreement on this point. Absent negotiation on the special assessment, the default in some purchase and sale agreements is for the buyer to pay it if it is assessed after the date of the agreement. Normally any fees incurred after the closing are the responsibility of the new owner.
Regarding the 6(d) certificate, Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 183A, Section 6(d) requires the organization of unit owners to issue it to you "within ten business days after receipt of a written request, upon payment of a reasonable fee, and shall be binding on the organization of unit owners, the governing body of the organization of unit owners, and every unit owner." The organization of unit owners can't hold it up simply because they want further details about who is paying what and when. The certificate relates only to the month in which you are closing. A "clean" 6(d) states that all common areas fees are paid through the end of that particular month and that there are no other unpaid common area fees. Hopefully with a little pressure and a reminder of their statutory obligations, your unit owner organization will issue the certificate. Just be sure to have a copy of any submitted requests so that you can prove when the certificate should issue by and that you paid the applicable fee. A copy of the cashed check for the fee would be helpful as well.See question
I want to add I was not involved in this lawsuit my sister had against my mother, my mother is telling me this is a draft of the new deed, doesnt a quitclaim deed transfer ownership ? do I really have to sign this if not ordered by the court
Yes, a quitclaim deed when executed transfers some interest in real estate depending on what's specified in the particular deed. Having not reviewed the deed, I can't tell you what interest your sister would be quitclaiming. Presumably she has an attorney who is representing her in the lawsuit who has reviewed the court's judgment and can then review the deed. If your mother was ordered to buy out your sister's interest then there would have to be a transfer of funds or some other consideration given to your sister prior to your sister deeding her interest away. If your sister represented herself, she absolutely should consult an attorney at this juncture to assist her in determining her next steps so as not to violate the court's judgment and to protect her rights. Best of luck to you and your family.See question
building a deck too closed to property line violated the the law? stairs are too closed to my fence? is it legal for them to build the stair too closed to my fence? is is state law require the deck to set back many feet from property line?
Setbacks are governed by your municipality's zoning bylaw or ordinance. I suggest you get a copy from your local building inspector or zoning enforcement officer. Even so, your neighbor may have obtained zoning relief from your municipality allowing him to locate his deck within the setback area. Also, stairs and certain other components are often not calculated for determining proximity to setback areas. Again, refer to your zoning bylaw or ordinance. If it turns out that your neighbor has violated the zoning bylaw or ordinance without obtaining relief, then you may have recourse against them. Best of luck to you!See question
I live in Massachusetts and have a family member that has abandoned a property that was in our family for multiple generations. As it is still in her name, do we have any action that can be taken to attempt a takeover? Our fear is that it will eve...
If you can show that you have an interest, present or future, in the property, you may have standing to assert a claim against the record owner for waste of the property and request a court to order that title revert in your name (or potentially in a class of persons sharing your interest). This is not easy and requires court action if the record owner does not consent to a transfer of title. Litigation can be lengthy and expensive. I recommend that you consult with a real estate attorney handling these kinds of cases so that they can do some preliminary research to determine what can be done to save the property and whose rights are implicated. Best of luck to you.See question
The tenant has a child under the age of 6 who is seeing a therapist. At the recommendation of the therapist, the suggestion was to lock the child in their room when they are having a temper tantrum until they calm down. The room currently does n...
I do not think it is the landlord's place to get involved in such matters. The tenant can simply put their own lock on the door if that is their desire so long as they are not violating any provisions of their rental agreement and if they provide the landlord with a copy of the key. I also recommend documenting any agreement or lack thereof on the matter of installation of the lock so that the landlord is protected from any related disputes.See question
Mother went broke too much spending her Husband life insurance she moved with sister collects husband pension and wants to hand the house to me with a mortgage to have her removed so she will be free so wants me to take over everything and keep t...
Your mother can simply deed you the property. However, the only way to have her removed from the mortgage and the underlying note and you added is if you refinance the property or if the lender holding the present note allows you to assume the note. If your mother deeds you the property without obtaining her lender's consent, she will likely be in breach of the mortgage. Most mortgages contain acceleration clauses, which are triggered by certain transfers of title. There are many things you and your mother should consider before hastily changing the title to the property. One such consideration is how a transfer could affect her qualifying for Medicaid coverage if she ever needed to live in a nursing home. Transfers of assets can trigger ineligibility if made within a specified lookback period. Before you take any steps, you should seek counsel of a real estate and/or estate planning attorney so as to best protect the asset and yourselves. Best of luck to you both.See question
I am interested in purchasing a condo in Massachusetts, the only problem is that it is currently occupied by renters. If I buy this condo with the purpose of using it as my primary residence, do I have legal right to vacate these tenants?
The first question to ask is what are the terms of the tenants' rental agreement. This will dictate your rights. If you must have the property vacant at the time of closing then the offer you make on the property should reflect this requirement. The sellers will then either accept this condition or not and, if so, they'll be responsible for delivering it vacant, which means they'll have to undertake the efforts of terminating the tenants' tenancy. I highly recommend that you hire a real estate attorney to draft your offer for you to ensure that you are adequately protected. If you do decide to purchase the property occupied, there are many other considerations you must take into account, which a landlord/tenant attorney can guide you through. Being a landlord in Massachusetts is serious business. Good luck!See question
My landlord provided email confirmation that she had received our full security deposit equal to one month's rent (just saying "yes, I received it in this month"), but she did not provide us with the bank account information where the deposit is b...
From the information you provided, it sounds like you are still in possession of the premises you rented. If that is the case, you are entitled at this point to the immediate return of your security deposit and the illegal pet deposit and would need to make a written demand for this. If after the demand is given, your landlord refuses to return the funds to you, then you would be entitled to file a claim in court for their return and would, at that time, be entitled to treble damages, attorney's fees and costs. Since the Security Deposit statute is complicated and does provide for the award of attorney's fees, I recommend you consult with an attorney if it gets to that stage. Most will take that kind of case on the contingency of recovering an award of attorney's fees.See question
I am selling my martial home via short sale in my divorce . Paperwork was sent over that mortgage company approved short sale but there was a municipal lien attached - what does this mean and how quickly can I resolve it and what do I do to resolv...
Your representative or short sale negotiator should obtain figures from the municipality, including accrued interest, through the projected closing date and prepare a settlement statement that includes these figures as well as the rest of your closing costs and provide this to your lender(s) for their review and approval. Some lenders will have limits on what costs they will absorb. But, in any event, the municipal liens and any other outstanding liens will need to be released in order for you to transfer clear title to the property to the buyer. A short sale is very much like a regular transaction except that, in most cases, the seller brings nothing to the table and gets nothing from the transaction. Liens still need to get released notwithstanding the transaction being a short sale. And, the buyer's attorney or closing attorney will do a full title exam that will reveal any liens outstanding. Best of luck to you!See question