The 1-year lease on the house I rent ended two months ago and the lease defaulted to month to month (no new signing of a lease). At that time, one housemate moved out without giving thirty day notice to the other tenants. He claims that he sent an email to the landlord, but the landlord never shared that email or information with us. The landlord then expected us to pay the balance due for the absent housemate. In addition, we have selected housemates to move in and he has declined to approve their application in a timely manner. Are we responsible for the third portion of the rent for the past two months and this upcoming month?
Landlord / Tenant Lawyer
If I understand the facts correctly, yes, you're responsible for the rent, but so is the departing tenant. If the tenant has already moved out, you will probably need to file a small claims action to collect. You can try to get your landlord to help you collect by withhold that tenant's share of rent, but it's just as likely that your landlord will try to evict you for nonpayment of rent as he is to go after the departing tenant. If you withhold rent, you will want to hold on to it so that you can pay it to your landlord or into court if you get a 72-hour termination notice. It may be worth hiring an attorney to help with negotiations between the parties.
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