How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

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tim1999
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How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by tim1999 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:43 am

My cousin asked me for help with this situation knowing that I used to be a landlord years ago, but this involves an issue I never had to deal with. She needs to give her landlord 30-day written notice that she will not be renewing the lease when it expires. This is a residential detached house. This is the first time she has had to give him any kind of written notice per the lease terms. Expiration is 3/15 so she has some time yet before it is officially 30 days out. She has always communicated with the landlord via email or text. She emailed him the 30-day notice but did not receive a response after 7 days. She texted him asking if he received the email and received no response to that either. In the past the landlord had usually responded to communication on maintenance issues, etc. within the same day.

-The lease does not give an address for the landlord whatsoever. It only states the address of the rental premises. It states payments are to be mailed to him (it is a boilerplate lease form from the state realtors' association), but when she moved in, he told her he requires EFT.
-She pays her rent to the landlord via EFT to his bank account and has always done so on-time.
-She has noticed that the landlord has not yet started advertising the unit for rent again.
-The county tax assessment site lists the rental property address as the owner's mailing address. The landlord owns a few other properties in the area, those all list the properties themselves as the owner's mailing address. My cousin says she sometimes receives mail for the landlord at the property such as things that look like homeowners' insurance bills, etc.
-She has anecdotal information that the landlord actually lives in another city about 200 miles away. I tried tax assessment searches in that area for him and came up with nothing useful as he has a common name in that area and the lease does not state his middle initial.

The only thing I can think of doing is having her send the notice by certified mail to the landlord at her own address (which is what the tax records state), then telling the landlord in a text or email that he has received certified mail notification, and have her retain all proof of mailing plus the notification she receives for the landlord in her mailbox.

The lease becomes month-to-month automatically if notice of non-renewal is not given to the landlord by tenant. She does not want to be liable for any future rent as she plans on vacating by the original termination date. She is also afraid that without an address, if the landlord does not return her security deposit (she should get it, I've been in the rental, it's spotless), she has no way to serve him with a small claims lawsuit for its return. She feels the landlord is trying to pull some funny business by ignoring or pretending not to receive her notice, and will try to claim she did not terminate and/or unjustly keep the deposit. How would you all proceed if you were her in this situation?

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by dm200 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:47 am

tim1999 wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:43 am
My cousin asked me for help with this situation knowing that I used to be a landlord years ago, but this involves an issue I never had to deal with. She needs to give her landlord 30-day written notice that she will not be renewing the lease when it expires. This is a residential detached house. This is the first time she has had to give him any kind of written notice per the lease terms. Expiration is 3/15 so she has some time yet before it is officially 30 days out. She has always communicated with the landlord via email or text. She emailed him the 30-day notice but did not receive a response after 7 days. She texted him asking if he received the email and received no response to that either. In the past the landlord had usually responded to communication on maintenance issues, etc. within the same day.

-The lease does not give an address for the landlord whatsoever. It only states the address of the rental premises. It states payments are to be mailed to him (it is a boilerplate lease form from the state realtors' association), but when she moved in, he told her he requires EFT.
-She pays her rent to the landlord via EFT to his bank account and has always done so on-time.
-She has noticed that the landlord has not yet started advertising the unit for rent again.
-The county tax assessment site lists the rental property address as the owner's mailing address. The landlord owns a few other properties in the area, those all list the properties themselves as the owner's mailing address. My cousin says she sometimes receives mail for the landlord at the property such as things that look like homeowners' insurance bills, etc.
-She has anecdotal information that the landlord actually lives in another city about 200 miles away. I tried tax assessment searches in that area for him and came up with nothing useful as he has a common name in that area and the lease does not state his middle initial.

The only thing I can think of doing is having her send the notice by certified mail to the landlord at her own address (which is what the tax records state), then telling the landlord in a text or email that he has received certified mail notification, and have her retain all proof of mailing plus the notification she receives for the landlord in her mailbox.

The lease becomes month-to-month automatically if notice of non-renewal is not given to the landlord by tenant. She does not want to be liable for any future rent as she plans on vacating by the original termination date. She is also afraid that without an address, if the landlord does not return her security deposit (she should get it, I've been in the rental, it's spotless), she has no way to serve him with a small claims lawsuit for its return. She feels the landlord is trying to pull some funny business by ignoring or pretending not to receive her notice, and will try to claim she did not terminate and/or unjustly keep the deposit. How would you all proceed if you were her in this situation?


The rental property is in Reno NV.
Yes - send certified letter - return receipt.

Has the rent due Feb 1 been paid yet? Not paying the rent might get his/her "attention"

Maybe check with his/her tenants at the other properties?

Is there an attorney's name on the lease/rental agreement?

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by RickBoglehead » Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:52 am

She should never have signed a lease without it containing an address for the landlord to receive mail at, but that's beside the point now.

She has texted him, she has emailed him. Since he has always received those before, he's likely received them now. She should resend (i.e. forward the old email) with a read receipt turned on. She should also CALL him, since she has his phone number... "Bob, can I get a mailing address to send you written notice of my intent to end my lease when it expires on 3/15/19"?

Mailing a certified letter to her own address and then telling him he has received it, which he has not, seems silly.

Since you know of other properties that he owns nearby, perhaps she could knock on the door and ask "Hey, I rent from Bob too. Do you have contact information for him?"
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tim1999
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by tim1999 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:57 am

dm200 wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:47 am


Yes - send certified letter - return receipt.

Has the rent due Feb 1 been paid yet? Not paying the rent might get his/her "attention" Yes, it has been paid.

Maybe check with his/her tenants at the other properties? Could try that, though I would suspect its the same situation there.

Is there an attorney's name on the lease/rental agreement? No.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by goingup » Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:59 am

RickBoglehead wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:52 am
She should also CALL him, since she has his phone number... "Bob, can I get a mailing address to send you written notice of my intent to end my lease when it expires on 3/15/19"?
Exactly! If you can text, you can call. Do that.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by ResearchMed » Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:00 am

RickBoglehead wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:52 am
She should never have signed a lease without it containing an address for the landlord to receive mail at, but that's beside the point now.

She has texted him, she has emailed him. Since he has always received those before, he's likely received them now. She should resend (i.e. forward the old email) with a read receipt turned on. She should also CALL him, since she has his phone number... "Bob, can I get a mailing address to send you written notice of my intent to end my lease when it expires on 3/15/19"?

Mailing a certified letter to her own address and then telling him he has received it, which he has not, seems silly.

Since you know of other properties that he owns nearby, perhaps she could knock on the door and ask "Hey, I rent from Bob too. Do you have contact information for him?"
Sounds sleazy, but as mentioned, that's no help now.

However, I think there might be some value (attorneys can chime in; IANAL) to sending the certified letter.
Actually, often, for legal purposes (at least in legal proceedings we've been involved in), such letters don't even *need* to be certified, and they are somehow assumed to be "received" (which is very troublesome, given the vagaries of US snail mail).

Anyway, I'd phrase the email as something more like, 'I sent a certified letter to the only address you have provided to me, which is my rental address. The letter has arrived and it will be held here for you, or for instructions from you as to where I should forward it", or such.

I'd also call, and then memorialize the fact that I have tried on (x) occasions to call, by including that information in yet another email.

And perhaps state that since you KNOW that he has received prior emails (is that true? has he responded via email?), then you are assuming these emails are received...
And state that you have thus complied with the legal requirements to give necessary notice, etc.

Does the EFT show *him* any, er., "useful" banking info?
If so, I'd consider closing that account asap, and opening a new one.

Good luck.

RM
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by Sandtrap » Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:07 am

RickBoglehead wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:52 am
She should never have signed a lease without it containing an address for the landlord to receive mail at, but that's beside the point now.

She has texted him, she has emailed him. Since he has always received those before, he's likely received them now. She should resend (i.e. forward the old email) with a read receipt turned on. She should also CALL him, since she has his phone number... "Bob, can I get a mailing address to send you written notice of my intent to end my lease when it expires on 3/15/19"?

Mailing a certified letter to her own address and then telling him he has received it, which he has not, seems silly.

Since you know of other properties that he owns nearby, perhaps she could knock on the door and ask "Hey, I rent from Bob too. Do you have contact information for him?"
+1
1
Document, make a hard copy file, all that has taken place in including emails, texts, etc, as well as conversation recaps. ( in case things turn sour).
2. Do indeed mail the certified letter. You don't need to say he received it. Not needed.
3. If you know the address of the other properties, send the same certified letter to those addresses.
4. If you feel up to it, ask the other renters for contact info. (but you should not have to go this far, in theory). But, it wouldn't hurt.
5. Yes, the reversion to Month to Month and the "holdover tenant" penalties are real. So do whatever you can now to get this notice to the landlord. With proof of doing so.
6. Not paying the rent would certainly get the landlord's attention and if he is "on the ball" he will send out a 5 day late notice. You can then use that return address to send the notice of non renewal of lease as well as the rent payment. But, realize you may have to pay the penalty for the late rent payment and you can't contest that since it is another issue. After all, you did pay the rent late. So be prepared for that.
7. The idea of text and email with a "read receipt" is a great one. Do it right away. Again, print it all out and put in your file. (as if you might need to show that file to a small claims court judge later, hopefully not).
8. Yes. Also make that phone call. Hopefully it goes to message so it will be recorded. Word it is a verbal notice of non renewal of lease and also give a move out date in which you will be vacating the premises. Again, print out verbatim the message that you left and put it in your file with date and time you called him.
9. Try not to beat yourself up by assuming whatever motives or reasons for actions from the landlord. Just do your part. Don't make it personal.

The idea of all this redundancy is that if the landlord is unresponsive and you move out, it may come back to you in some form and you will only have to make a copy of anything in your file and send it back to the landlord or his legal counsel as hard copy certified mail. Most of the time that will be enough to make it go away permanently. In a worse case scenario, that file shown to a small claims court judge will be enough to close the door on it.

The point is, that you can show at any time that you've gone above and beyond (but no need to go ridiculously beyond) "doing the right thing" as agreed per lease (good faith), and the landlord has not.

PS: be sure to clean the unit and do everything you can, within the terms of the lease, to leave it in rentable condition with no more than "normal" wear and tear during your occupancy. (don't give the landlord a reason to charge you for things).

*These are random ideas to cover your bases. Lot's of great suggestions here from everyone.

Good luck.
j
Last edited by Sandtrap on Mon Feb 04, 2019 12:04 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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8foot7
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by 8foot7 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:07 am

Here's what I would do, and I would do all of these, which I think would go above and beyond what a reasonable person should be expected to do: (a) send the certified mail return receipt requested to the address listed for him on the tax docs of the house, which if I understand your post is actually the address of the rental (b) send a copy to another rental house of his that you know is his so that you can prove you tried multiple addresses to contact him (c) text a picture of the notice and the receipts to him and retain evidence of the date you texted him (d) call him and tell him you're leaving 3/15 and you need an address to forward the notices to, and retain evidence of the call date, time, and the phone number you called (e) e-mail him at previous addresses with the copies and request a read receipt and (f) if he doesn't acknowledge any of these, then don't pay March rent.

Looks like in Nevada when he contacts you about the late rent with a pay-or-quit notice, he has to either personally serve you along with a witness, at which time you can give him your notices and the proof of mailing, or he has to mail the notice to you return receipt requested, which would obviously then have his return address on it, so you could then forward those notices too. Then you pay half the month's rent immediately and be done.

If for some reason he ghosts you while you're delinquent on the rent, then he can use the security deposit to satisfy March's rent (and whatever late fee you might be assessed), and you can decide whether whatever would be left of the deposit is worth hiring a PI to track him down and sue for.

A, B, C, D, E should cover your bases about making reasonable effort to serve a notice on him, and F will force the conversation unless he's an idiot.
Last edited by 8foot7 on Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

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tim1999
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by tim1999 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:08 am

goingup wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:59 am
RickBoglehead wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:52 am
She should also CALL him, since she has his phone number... "Bob, can I get a mailing address to send you written notice of my intent to end my lease when it expires on 3/15/19"?
Exactly! If you can text, you can call. Do that.
She did try calling him twice after a few days went by with no answer to the email, but he did not answer, and she left a VM the second time. She feels she is being dodged on purpose since he had always been very prompt in response to calls/emails/texts in the 11 months prior, until now. Sort of like the reverse of when I was a landlord, I had normally-communicative tenants often go quiet or into "ignore the landlord mode" when they were suddenly behind on rent and I was trying to contact them for payment.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by RickBoglehead » Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:18 am

Some states allow recording of a call by one party without permission of the other party. If that applies to her state, she should call again, recording the call including his message, and her message that she leaves.

She can also block her phone number to see if he answers (and should record if legal in her state). *67 before the number usually does that. Then if he answers, she's got her answer as well as giving him notice.
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by deskjockey » Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:19 am

She might want to call him from a different phone, so he can't screen her call effectively. Alternatively, she could leave a voicemail about a "major problem" with the rental (broken pipe with flooding, HVAC gone bust, etc.) while leaving out just enough info to force him to call back, and serve him notice when he calls back to find out the details.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by LiterallyIronic » Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:39 am

I would call every day, multiple times a day, from different phone numbers. Her cell phone; her work phone; neighbors, friends, family phones; created Google Voice numbers, etc. And never leave a voicemail from any of those numbers, or else that number is dead in the water. I would also, if you're in a one-party state, record the calls.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by 8foot7 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:51 am

LiterallyIronic wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:39 am
I would call every day, multiple times a day, from different phone numbers. Her cell phone; her work phone; neighbors, friends, family phones; created Google Voice numbers, etc. And never leave a voicemail from any of those numbers, or else that number is dead in the water. I would also, if you're in a one-party state, record the calls.
I don't really see the point of this, as phone calls are essentially never a valid means of serving notice on someone in any legal capacity, but perhaps more importantly, someone looking to evade contact wouldn't answer calls from random numbers that come in all of a sudden multiple times a day.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by LiterallyIronic » Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:56 am

8foot7 wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:51 am
LiterallyIronic wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:39 am
I would call every day, multiple times a day, from different phone numbers. Her cell phone; her work phone; neighbors, friends, family phones; created Google Voice numbers, etc. And never leave a voicemail from any of those numbers, or else that number is dead in the water. I would also, if you're in a one-party state, record the calls.
I don't really see the point of this, as phone calls are essentially never a valid means of serving notice on someone in any legal capacity, but perhaps more importantly, someone looking to evade contact wouldn't answer calls from random numbers that come in all of a sudden multiple times a day.
You're not going to give the notice via the phone call, you're going to ask for the mailing address via the phone call. And if the landlord refuses to say what it is, you've got that recorded.

It's not like the landlord is someone looking to stay off the grid - the landlord, presumably, still wants to take calls from potential renters of other properties.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by renue74 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 12:00 pm

In my state and county, we use the local magistrates court for tenant evictions. I'm a landlord.

I suggest you contact the local court system in your town who handles landlord/tenant law and ask them the process in your specific case.

I'm sure it's the not the first time tenants couldn't find their landlords. There is always a legal, systematic way to do what you ask about. Find that way.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by SRenaeP » Mon Feb 04, 2019 12:47 pm

Are real estate sales in the public record in her jurisdiction? I suspect so. If that is the case, she could probably pull the original sales record to determine his address at the time of sale. She could then send a certified letter to that address.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by PVW » Mon Feb 04, 2019 12:57 pm

The email is probably sufficient notice. She can also mail a letter to the landlord using the rental address - the landlord cannot legally retrieve it from the tenant's mailbox (and should not be retrieving any other mail either), but she can hold it and then text him that she is holding mail addressed to him.

Given the lack of real address and limited communication from the landlord, it's likely a judge would agree that the tenant provided sufficient notice (IANAL). I think the real problem is that the landlord might withhold the deposit for lack of notice, then the tenant would have to go through the hassle of pursuing this in court.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by guilard1 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:05 pm

Would adding your intent to leave in the Memo of your payment be legally useful?

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by Sandtrap » Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:08 pm

PVW wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 12:57 pm
The email is probably sufficient notice. She can also mail a letter to the landlord using the rental address - the landlord cannot legally retrieve it from the tenant's mailbox (and should not be retrieving any other mail either), but she can hold it and then text him that she is holding mail addressed to him.

Given the lack of real address and limited communication from the landlord, it's likely a judge would agree that the tenant provided sufficient notice (IANAL). I think the real problem is that the landlord might withhold the deposit for lack of notice, then the tenant would have to go through the hassle of pursuing this in court.
IANAL ??? definition?

Yes. Very true. Sleezy landlords will do this and often the tenant has neither the time or resources to recover their funds
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tim1999
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by tim1999 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:20 pm

SRenaeP wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 12:47 pm
Are real estate sales in the public record in her jurisdiction? I suspect so. If that is the case, she could probably pull the original sales record to determine his address at the time of sale. She could then send a certified letter to that address.
The deeds and related paperwork in public records indicate that for this property and each of the others he owns, his mailing address was given as the same as the address of the property purchased in the transaction. I. E. in the deed for the purchase of 123 Mister Furley Drive, his mailing address was given as 123 Mister Furley Drive.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by dm200 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:31 pm

Maybe leave message/text that the roof fell in or the house was hit by a meteor - might get his attention :)

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by Broken Man 1999 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:38 pm

IANAL ??? definition?

I am not a lawyer.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by IngognitoUSA » Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:47 pm

Tell him hot water faucet is leaking. That gets attention quickly if landlord is paying the heat and water bill

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by whomever » Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:53 pm

"The county tax assessment site lists the rental property address as the owner's mailing address."

I'm trying to figure out how that works. We get an annual property tax bill - we wouldn't know how much to pay otherwise. And they have you mail in a payment voucher with the check.

So how is this landlord paying his taxes? The assessor mails bills to his tenants, but he has the tenants discard the bills rather than giving a forwarding address, then the landlord calls up the assessor and asks "what's the bill this year for 1234 Maple Drive?", and mails in a check with a cover letter saying it's for 1234 Maple Drive?

"It states payments are to be mailed to him (it is a boilerplate lease form from the state realtors' association), but when she moved in, he told her he requires EFT."

IANAL ("I Am Not A Lawyer") but it sounds like she could just not EFT, and when the landlord complains state that future rent payments will be made in accordance with the lease, via US Mail, and what's the appropriate address. But I'd talk to a lawyer first, lest using ETF to date somehow imply agreement to continue. In fact, I think I'd buy an hour of a lawyer's time in any event, and do whatever they advise.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by 8foot7 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:55 pm

IngognitoUSA wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:47 pm
Tell him hot water faucet is leaking. That gets attention quickly if landlord is paying the heat and water bill
Not sure that, when you are attempting to create a paper trail that you are in good faith attempting to reach the landlord to provide legal notices provided for under a valid lease, lying to landlord to cause a reaction is a good idea.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by IngognitoUSA » Mon Feb 04, 2019 2:00 pm

The landlord might be trying to keep the deposit,fully aware that renter may not have the time to goto court, no matter how long the paper trail is.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Mon Feb 04, 2019 2:46 pm

There is probably some equivalent to a Fair Housing office in your area. If so, they might be able to help.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by MotoTrojan » Mon Feb 04, 2019 2:50 pm

Send a friendly letter describing your issues to the other homes owned by the landlord and see if anyone wants to go in on legal costs. Even if nobody responds, a few will probably let the landlord know and they will get back to you quick :).

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by mouses » Mon Feb 04, 2019 3:08 pm

Is title insurance recorded somewhere with the sale documents? The title company might have his address. Real estate agent name?

I like the suggestion to notify the other tenants in addition to some of the other recommendations.

It's hard to think of a legitimate reason for the landlord's behavior.

How are units rented? Who is there to show them?

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by PVW » Mon Feb 04, 2019 3:17 pm

whomever wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:53 pm
"The county tax assessment site lists the rental property address as the owner's mailing address."

I'm trying to figure out how that works.
Either the landlord checks the mailbox or the tenants just hold onto the mail and hand it over when the landlord asks for it. The landlord could be doing this to get a homestead deduction on property tax, and maybe other things like residential mortgage rates, owner occupied home insurance policy, etc.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by SRenaeP » Mon Feb 04, 2019 4:07 pm

PVW wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 3:17 pm
whomever wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:53 pm
"The county tax assessment site lists the rental property address as the owner's mailing address."

I'm trying to figure out how that works.
Either the landlord checks the mailbox or the tenants just hold onto the mail and hand it over when the landlord asks for it. The landlord could be doing this to get a homestead deduction on property tax, and maybe other things like residential mortgage rates, owner occupied home insurance policy, etc.
That's what I was thinking. The landlord is being unscrupulous.

That said, at least in my area, property tax bills are available for viewing and payment online so the landlord may not care about receiving the paper bill.

aprilcpa
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by aprilcpa » Mon Feb 04, 2019 4:09 pm

In NC, you can usually check the county office register of deeds and sometimes there is an address for the property owner. Also, do you know if he is operating as a LLC or other organization where you can search state secretary of state records? In NC you can search by a person's name.

The next tactic I would use is to call the landlord and tell them your bank account has been compromised and you cannot send an EFT but would be more than happy to mail him a money order if you had the correct address.

dbr
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by dbr » Tue Feb 05, 2019 10:44 am

Isn't it possible the landlord has died or is incapacitated, in a coma, or whatever. It is entirely possible for people to be stricken down by illness or whatever and not have any family or friends around to deal with it.

So what is the status of a rental when the landlord becomes incompetent and there is no backup?

Maybe she should file a missing persons report with the police and see if they can find him. Given there are other tenants in the same situation, what do they know and what are they doing?

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8foot7
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by 8foot7 » Tue Feb 05, 2019 10:45 am

dbr wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 10:44 am
Isn't it possible the landlord has died or is incapacitated, in a coma, or whatever. It is entirely possible for people to be stricken down by illness or whatever and not have any family or friends around to deal with it.

So what is the status of a rental when the landlord becomes incompetent and there is no backup?

Maybe she should file a missing persons report with the police and see if they can find him. Given there are other tenants in the same situation, what do they know and what are they doing?
If this were true then not paying March rent would make it clear.

dbr
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by dbr » Tue Feb 05, 2019 10:49 am

8foot7 wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 10:45 am
dbr wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 10:44 am
Isn't it possible the landlord has died or is incapacitated, in a coma, or whatever. It is entirely possible for people to be stricken down by illness or whatever and not have any family or friends around to deal with it.

So what is the status of a rental when the landlord becomes incompetent and there is no backup?

Maybe she should file a missing persons report with the police and see if they can find him. Given there are other tenants in the same situation, what do they know and what are they doing?
If this were true then not paying March rent would make it clear.
That might be the best tactic.

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tim1999
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by tim1999 » Tue Feb 05, 2019 12:08 pm

whomever wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:53 pm
"The county tax assessment site lists the rental property address as the owner's mailing address."

I'm trying to figure out how that works. We get an annual property tax bill - we wouldn't know how much to pay otherwise. And they have you mail in a payment voucher with the check.

So how is this landlord paying his taxes? The assessor mails bills to his tenants, but he has the tenants discard the bills rather than giving a forwarding address, then the landlord calls up the assessor and asks "what's the bill this year for 1234 Maple Drive?", and mails in a check with a cover letter saying it's for 1234 Maple Drive?
There is a mortgage on the property held by a megabank according to my public record research. I would have to imagine they require an escrow account for taxes. When I had such a megabank mortgage, the bank got the tax info directly from the taxing authority and paid what was due. No need to forward the bill to the bank. I'm thinking that is the case with my cousin's landlord. She said she occasionally gets bills or policy docs (at least that's what they look like from the envelopes) addressed to the landlord for homeowners' insurance but didn't mention tax bills.

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by retire2022 » Tue Feb 05, 2019 12:19 pm


GibsonL6s
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by GibsonL6s » Tue Feb 05, 2019 12:42 pm

What does the notice provision of the lease say. legal documents contain notice provisions and it may state what needs to be done. I would email or text the notice and ask the landlord for a physical address so you can also mail a copy. A court would not look kindly on a LL being evasive to charge a vacating tenant additional fees.

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beyou
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by beyou » Tue Feb 05, 2019 1:07 pm

Do not pay any further rent to a non-responsive landlord and close the bank account in question.
I almost never give out permission for EFT. Credit card yes but not EFT.

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Watty
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by Watty » Tue Feb 05, 2019 1:22 pm

dbr wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 10:44 am
Isn't it possible the landlord has died or is incapacitated, in a coma, or whatever. It is entirely possible for people to be stricken down by illness or whatever and not have any family or friends around to deal with it.

+1

Or traveling out of the country.

If they died you may have to file a claim against their estate to get any security deposit back. I would just not make any more rent payments to help cover any security deposits you might not get back.

retire2022
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by retire2022 » Tue Feb 05, 2019 2:08 pm

Op consider this concept adverse procession, you could legally own the property

https://statelaws.findlaw.com/nevada-la ... -laws.html

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Earl Lemongrab
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Tue Feb 05, 2019 8:02 pm

retire2022 wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 2:08 pm
Op consider this concept adverse procession, you could legally own the property
Considering that it takes many years of adverse possession, I don't think a month or so of not hearing from the landlord is going to do anything.

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Earl Lemongrab
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Tue Feb 05, 2019 8:05 pm

I'll reiterate my suggestion of checking for a Fair Housing Office or equivalent. They are used to dealing with odd landlord behavior, and are very familiar with the tenant laws in the state.

IMO
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by IMO » Tue Feb 05, 2019 8:31 pm

OP,

This is kinda of a very odd situation for a tenant/landlord. How would you notify the landlord if there is a significant issue with the property? A bit of oversight on BOTH the landlord and the tenant when the lease was done.

In any event take some action to explain the situation that the tenant is having notifying the landlord. For example, sending a letter addressed to landlord explaining that tenant cannot find any means to contact the landlord to notify tenant's 30 day notice. Advise in the letter what steps tenant attempted to make contact with landlord. Where to send the letter? As someone advised, the county assessor should have a legal address of the owner(s). Or if that's the same as the rented property, just address it to the physical address of the house and leave it in the house upon vacating with the keys. Obviously make a copy of the letter, copy of the mailing/receipt. (Take picture of the mailing left at the house).

Some utilities have landlord type policies where the utilities go back to the landlord, and you may to check with the utilities to see if they have the landlords information. If there are utility landlord policies in place, this would be helpful to secure the property (see below).

What bank do the electronic funds deposit at? You might be able to contact a bank manager to get the landlord's information, or a helpful bank employee might even call for you (since they likely cannot give out that information).

Try searching the internet. Pretty easy nowadays to find someone's name, address, date of birth online.

I would not pay the final month's rent. The landlord would have to get in touch with the tenant regarding the lack of rent payment. If that actually happens, then one can resolve the lack of ability to contact the landlord at that time (and also pay the last month's rent at that time). If the tenant cannot contact the landlord to give notice, do you think the tenant will have the ability to contact the landlord to request one's security deposit?

Document, document, document. Take pictures/video of the premises upon vacating the premises.

Ultimately, the landlord would have to take the tenant to small claims court to collect the last months rent. However, I do not think any reasonable judge would side with the landlord on this particular situation if the tenant documented things as noted above.

There really could be issues that have come up with the landlord (health issues for example). But ultimately, document things and leave the property fully cleaned and secured. I would advise you go further if the property is in a cold climate and turn off the main water when you leave, and open the lowest faucet at the property (and a plumbing fixture located highest in house) to allow the water to drain and prevent freeze damage to the property. No reason to risk pipe freeze damage because that's just not the right thing to do in life. If there are landlord utilities in place, keep the heater set low but above freezing (i.e. 50 degrees).

If possible (??) you may even want to see if a local police officer would come by the property as you are vacating to take a courtesy report that you have moved out but have no ability to contact the landlord.

Hope that's helpful. (I am a landlord).

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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by michaeljc70 » Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:47 pm

whomever wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:53 pm
"The county tax assessment site lists the rental property address as the owner's mailing address."

I'm trying to figure out how that works. We get an annual property tax bill - we wouldn't know how much to pay otherwise. And they have you mail in a payment voucher with the check.

So how is this landlord paying his taxes? The assessor mails bills to his tenants, but he has the tenants discard the bills rather than giving a forwarding address, then the landlord calls up the assessor and asks "what's the bill this year for 1234 Maple Drive?", and mails in a check with a cover letter saying it's for 1234 Maple Drive?

"It states payments are to be mailed to him (it is a boilerplate lease form from the state realtors' association), but when she moved in, he told her he requires EFT."

IANAL ("I Am Not A Lawyer") but it sounds like she could just not EFT, and when the landlord complains state that future rent payments will be made in accordance with the lease, via US Mail, and what's the appropriate address. But I'd talk to a lawyer first, lest using ETF to date somehow imply agreement to continue. In fact, I think I'd buy an hour of a lawyer's time in any event, and do whatever they advise.
This. The owner's address should be on the property tax records which are easily found online where I live. Send the certified letter there.

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Earl Lemongrab
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Wed Feb 06, 2019 12:27 am

michaeljc70 wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:47 pm
This. The owner's address should be on the property tax records which are easily found online where I live. Send the certified letter there.
As the OP said:
-The county tax assessment site lists the rental property address as the owner's mailing address.

123
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by 123 » Wed Feb 06, 2019 12:35 am

Send a certified letter to the landlord at the address for the property the county assessor has. It's possible the landlord has a change-of-address on file with the post office that automatically forwards mail. He/She would need to periodically refile it when it expires but that's not hard to do.
The closest helping hand is at the end of your own arm.

michaeljc70
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Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

Post by michaeljc70 » Wed Feb 06, 2019 12:45 am

Earl Lemongrab wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 12:27 am
michaeljc70 wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:47 pm
This. The owner's address should be on the property tax records which are easily found online where I live. Send the certified letter there.
As the OP said:
-The county tax assessment site lists the rental property address as the owner's mailing address.
I'd send the letter there then. Presumably the owner is paying the property tax bills. Does the owner pick up mail (in their name) at the address? Do they have it forwarded elsewhere? Frankly, the email and text should serve as notice given nothing else is specified and there is no other logical means. I verbally told my landlord in the past.

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