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Can a person act as landlord ,collect rent from room renters,not reside at address? Now the house is in forclosure..

Anaheim, CA |

Answered an ad to rent a room. Was told by "landlord" he was owner of home.2 months later he divided in 1/2 two rms w/drywall and rented to 4 more people,mind u there was already 2 tenants prior to me there. Now we have 7 . He lives in vegas and does nothing to fix things instead relied on us then subtract for rent,Which we paid by making a deposit into his B OF A Acct.8 days ago we got a forclosure notice,we're told not to pay rent,But we're to all be out on date of auction 3 wks away & he's selling all aplliances & utilities too. LEGAL? We recieved mail add. to actual owners(not knowing that @the time of course)We asked "him" if he knew the names on mail & were told "no,just throw that sh.. away.Question is if he was paying the rent collected from us,surely he know the owners names. HELP

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Attorney answers 3


It sounds like you've been scammed. The perpetrator is probably criminally liable if he is not the landlord nor an authorized agent for the landlord. You're going to need professional help from an attorney, and moreover, you probably need to file a police report as well.

Frank W. Chen has been licensed to practice law in California since 1988. The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice for a particular case. This posting does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author. For specific advice about your particular situation, please consult with your own attorney.



We really want to know our ROOM Renters Rights are once New Ownership occurs? i'm aware of the OBAMA amendment , would the police being brought into the already SHOCKING forclosure , please I feel we have rights on our side & 90 Days seems fair to us. We were told not to pay "HIM" any more rent, What is ur advice.?


The federal Tenants Act of 2009 protects tenants and they are allowed 90 days before they are forced to move out. California extended this protection for tenants to the year 2019.
You have rights and are protected. For more information, you can read the federal tenant protection and California tenant protection laws on the links below.
Lenore Albert, Esq.


Cease paying any rent to the individual. Discontinue any communication with him.

Look up on the county property appraiser's website to see what the real owner's name is.

Take a copy of your written lease agreements and file them with the clerk of the courts.
Write in the upper right hand corner of the first page of the lease copy the court case number.
Also send a cover letter addressed to the judge with the court number in the upper right hand corner. If you don't have a written lease agreement, then put the information in the letter as to who was collecting rent, what the term of the lease was supposed to be, how much rent you were paying, etc.

Ask to be kept informed of the foreclosure proceedings.
Go to a local attorney and ask for a consultation.
Good luck!