I am an apt. bldg. manager, the building I manage may go into forclosure. And/Or the loan note may be sold. Whose financial responsibility is it to pay the deposit refunds? The new owner or the old owner? Must the new owners honor the current rental agreements as they stand? This building is located in San Francisco, California What is my financial responsibility? Who has to pay the deposit refunds?Does the new owner or the old owner have the financial responsibility to pay the rental refunds?
If you are the manager of the building, not an owner, than you have no legal responsibility. The owner should contact an experienced mortgage foreclosure defense attorney. To properly answer your questions and address your concerns, the best way to handle this is with an in person consultation with an experienced CA mortgage foreclosure defense attorney. Use AVVO's Find a Lawyer tool to select a qualified attorney. Good luck. THIS IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE! YOU NEED TO SPEAK TO AN ATTORNEY WHO IS LICENSED IN YOUR STATE FOR LEGAL ADVICE. This is merely suggestions for you to think about in discussing your situation with the local attorney.
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Under Civil Code Section 1950.5, a successor landlord may have responsibility for security deposits, even if the funds were never transferred by the former owner.
If the tenancies are subject to rent-control/eviction control, then the rights of the tenant should not change much if there is a foreclosure/property sale. If the tenancies were exempt, then the new owner would have more rights, normally including the right to evict on proper notice.
Due to both the expansive definition of "landlord" contained in the SF rent control ordinance, and some California precedents (such as Stoiber v. Honeychuck), a manager does have a variety of duties to tenants. Whether you would have any responsibility for security deposits would depend in large part on how the leases were set up (e.g. if you signed the leases as a landlord, instead of the disclosed agent of a principal, then you might have some problems).
If you have further questions or concerns, consulting with a local landlord-tenant attorney would be a good idea.
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