Emilie M Fairbanks’s Answers

Emilie M Fairbanks

Washington Landlord / Tenant Lawyer.

Contributor Level 10
  1. Can I evict my tenant for not paying full amount of rent?

    Answered over 1 year ago.

    1. Emilie M Fairbanks
    2. Andrea Lee Negroni
    2 lawyer answers

    Yes, you can. If your lease contains a waiver of notice to quit you can file the papers immediately and if not you can serve a thirty day notice to correct or vacate for nonpayment of rent. If your tenant wants to challenge the rent increase he may do so by filing a tenant petition but just failing to pay any portion of the rent is nonpayment of rent and can be cause for eviction.

    2 lawyers agreed with this answer

    1 person marked this answer as helpful

  2. Can the landlord increase my rent if there is a roof leak and leakage into my dwelling

    Answered about 2 years ago.

    1. Emilie M Fairbanks
    2. Brandy Ann Peeples
    2 lawyer answers

    You can file a rent escrow suit, where you pay your rent into the court and request the court order repairs be made. If you weren't given proper notice of a rent increase you could refuse to pay it, but it would be your word against the landlord's. The good news it that if you sign a new year lease you have much more protection than a month to month tenant so you can go to court to demand repairs without fear of being evicted, as long as you are prepared to pay the entire rent amount.

    2 lawyers agreed with this answer

    1 person marked this answer as helpful

  3. Can we get our deposit back, if we break the lease early, but find another person to rent the apartment?

    Answered about 2 years ago.

    1. Emilie M Fairbanks
    2. Brandy Ann Peeples
    3. Antonios Kalogerakos
    3 lawyer answers

    Many leases don't allow subletting so in most cases your landlord would have to agree to this arrangement. Unless the new renter paid you a security deposit the landlord likely wouldn't return yours until the lease ended. You are better off discussing an early lease termination with the landlord. If the landlord is complaining, he might be willing to terminate your lease early and return your deposit after an inspection upon move out. If you decide to do this, sign an agreement with the...

    2 lawyers agreed with this answer

    1 person marked this answer as helpful

  4. Who is considered "housing provider" and what unit is "Housing accommodation" under D.C. Code § 42-3501.03

    Answered almost 2 years ago.

    1. Emilie M Fairbanks
    1 lawyer answer

    Yes, you are a housing provider if you rent a condo. It has nothing to do with having a tenant who receives subsidies. All of the regulations apply to all housing providers. There are a variety of programs that involve renting to subsidized tenants. Contact the DC Housing Authority or HUD for more information.

    2 lawyers agreed with this answer

  5. Can a landlord make you get rid of a pitbull or make you move if its not on the lease?

    Answered over 2 years ago.

    1. Emilie M Fairbanks
    2. Debra Sue Friedman
    2 lawyer answers

    What does the lease say about pets? Are there community rules about pets? Are there any local ordinances about pitbulls? Have there been any complaints about the dog? Are there any other provisions of the lease that might apply? Make sure you are on solid footing before you decide how to proceed.

    2 lawyers agreed with this answer

  6. Can I sue for difference in rent?

    Answered almost 3 years ago.

    1. Emilie M Fairbanks
    1 lawyer answer

    If you paid her a security deposit you would be entitled to get that back. You might have a claim that she is bound by the lease, but you also need to consider if you will spend more chasing her than you can realistically recover. Consult an attorney who can review the documents, but keep your expectations realistic.

    2 lawyers agreed with this answer

  7. Can I break a lease if my roommate moves her boyfriend in without consulting me first?

    Answered about 3 years ago.

    1. Emilie M Fairbanks
    1 lawyer answer

    Your lease is a contract between you and your landlord, the landlord isn't responsible for resolving problems between you and your roommates. If the lease forbids subletting or unauthorized occupants the landlord might evict you if they find out about your roommates's boyfriend, but that is up to them. If you leave before the lease is up and your roommate doesn't pay the rent, the landlord can likely come after you for the rent.

    2 lawyers agreed with this answer

  8. Roommates keeping the mail, what can i do?

    Answered about 3 years ago.

    1. Emilie M Fairbanks
    1 lawyer answer

    The Postal Service usually won't forward everything, bulk mail isn't forwarded. You usually need to have certain things like magazines forwarded individually. While your former roommates holding your mail could be a crime, I wouldn't count on the police arresting anyone for it. You should make sure everything important to you is individually forwarded, bills, personal mail, etc., and then discuss the issue with your former landland. If you only moved a block away you may have the same...

    2 lawyers agreed with this answer

  9. Writ of possession issued. Marshals scheduled for +3 months. Tenant left, but no keys were not returned. Can I change the lock?

    Answered about 1 year ago.

    1. Emilie M Fairbanks
    1 lawyer answer

    You may want to check the writ again. Writs in DC are issued for a seventy-five day period and during that period the eviction could take place on any weekday that the weather is above freezing and not raining or snowing. The landlord usually gets a day or two of notice that the Marshals are ready, so having a specific date set in May would be out of the ordinary. That doesn't mean your eviction will take place soon, the bad weather has created a backlog of evictions. However, regardless of...

    1 lawyer agreed with this answer

    1 person marked this answer as helpful

  10. Can I break my lease without incurring a huge fee for egregious secondhand smoke exposure?

    Answered over 1 year ago.

    1. Lynn Johnson
    2. Emilie M Fairbanks
    3. Golnar Sargeant
    3 lawyer answers

    That depends on a variety of factors. Does management allow smoking? If not, try reporting the offending neighbor first and see if you can resolve the issue. If so, they may argue you knew smoking was permitted. But if the ventilation doesn't permit enough fresh air in or uses too much recirculated air, it could be a violation of the DC Housing Code. Have you discussed with your landlord that you want to move and the reasons? Sometimes you can work out an agreement with the landlord.

    1 lawyer agreed with this answer

    1 person marked this answer as helpful