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Cheryl Rivera Smith

Cheryl Smith’s Answers

5,760 total


  • Can a neighbor be held liable for my losing two potential deals on selling my house due to their insane dog?

    The neighbor who lives directly behind me, on the other side of the sorry wood privacy fence that is seen throughout North Texas, has a dog which charges the fence every time it hears my back door open or any one in my back yard. The dog is appro...

    Cheryl’s Answer

    Your best bet is to text your neighbor if doggie day care isn't an option. Keep in mind that you may hear from unhappy buyers post-sale for failing to disclose the noise. Maybe a more permanent solution can be found, such as collars that deter the barking, neighbor getting rid of the bad dogs, or even surgery for the dogs if they are really bad. So sorry for this terrible problem - it can't be a good situation for your general quiet enjoyment of your premises as well. You might also brain-storm with your local law enforcement agency as well. It may fall under disturbing the peace.

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  • When your lease is up the apartment personal will not renew your lease and they give your 60 days to move am I still liabletopay

    Landlord gave me a 60 day notice to move, now I received 3 day notice to vacate. Can they do this?

    Cheryl’s Answer

    I agree with my colleagues. There is no "free pass" when you are given notice. If you bring your rent current and continue to pay during the 60 days, it is likely you will be able to stay. Best of luck.

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  • What lawyer can I get for a motel Pest Control problem that bit my child numerous times over night

    At the beginning of our stay we ask for a pest control to be sprayed in the room so that way we can lower down the bed bug situation because of my newborn because of my 7 month old baby after numerous times days and Mondays and days that went by t...

    Cheryl’s Answer

    Can you afford to move? If not, can you afford to fumigate the room yourself? You may want to check out your rights at www.texastenant.org. Best of luck.

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  • Can i sew?

    My apartments were in the flood that occured 3 months ago in texas. They apartment complex cut 1/4 of my walls. I have no sinks and no floors. They dont know when they are going to fix it and i cant keep living like this.. Today my son cut his for...

    Cheryl’s Answer

    You can sue, but it is a long and expensive process. Check to see if you can find the Houston Tenant's Rights organization at www.texastanant.org.

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  • Can i be evicted from my apartment if i paid the rent in full, but i cant pay my electric bill that is in my name

    Me and my husband just got out of the Military. We had twins who were very premature so i am a stay at home mom.my husband is struggling with a new job but we always manage to pay our rent and utilities. This month we couldnt afford to pay the uti...

    Cheryl’s Answer

    I agree with my colleagues. You may want to check for a local help line and check with local churches. They may offer assistance.

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  • What is the next step with the house?

    My parents have a home that still has 5 years to finish paying off. The house is under both of them and myself, one of their sons. 2 years ago, my wife and I took over the house payment. Both of my brothers are fully aware. At that point in time m...

    Cheryl’s Answer

    I agree with Mr. Cahan. It looks like the house has shared ownership, so Medicaid will look to trace the source of funds used to pay off the loan and only seek reimbursement out of your parents' actual share of the house if those benefits are received during the look-back period. It may be wise to seek help from and eldercare attorney to make sure you have explored all options.

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  • Would a quitclaim deed have any consequences on selling a home if I'm on a deed, but still owe medical debt?

    Hello, my wife and I reside in Austin, TX and we currently owe several thousand dollars in medical debt, although the debts have not gone delinquent. My name is on a house deed for a property in Texas along with my mom and brother, but they want t...

    Cheryl’s Answer

    Mr. Cahan is absolutely correct. Generally quit claim deeds are not used to convey title in Texas. Title companies have determined that doing so does not provide the "insurable title" that buyers and their lenders require. If the lien claimant has a judgment against you, and the property is not your homestead, the lien may attach. It is best to seek legal advice to review the specifics on this problem. Best of luck.

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  • Will I need to include the language "Grantor binds Grantor and Grantor's heirs, successors and assigns forever."

    My mother is transferring ownership of her house to me and my siblings.

    Cheryl’s Answer

    That is the habendum clause and it is required to affect a transfer. However, there is a Special Warranty Deed language that offers another option. With that said, by transferring the house prior to death, you may be jeopardizing present or future federal benefits your mother has AND you may be exposing you and your siblings to additional capital gains taxes at the time of sale. PLEASE seek competent eldercare legal advice before doing this.

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  • Is there any downside to buying a house in USA before becoming a resident?

    Foreign parents are planning on buying a home, and I plan to request their residency in the future.

    Cheryl’s Answer

    Many foreigners own property here and it is often a much safer investment than in their home country. The only downsides I can think of (and it isn't really a downside), is that, depending on the investment (probably not their residence if there is no income), they may need to have a US tax return, and, upon sale, they may need to pay a percentage of the profit to the iRS, but it is merely an offset against taxes owed. However, it is highly recommended to find a CPA who handles foreign investors.

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  • How can he do this

    I worked for a real estate agent and was asked to move into one of the properties to make sure it's ready for showings (it's a 4plex) I have since quit working for the real estate agent and now the owner is trying to get past rent out of me. He ha...

    Cheryl’s Answer

    He could try, but would need evidence (as would you). Do you have anything in writing? Any witnesses to the agreement? If I were you, I would just move on and react if he tries to sue you.

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