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LEGAL NEWS

Vol. 9 Issue 6


SINGLE FAMILY HOME MANAGER?

Mark your calendars and register for the NARPM Florida State Chapter Conference this September 20th through 22nd.  NARPM is of course the National Association of Residential Property Managers, the premier association for the residential manager. You will not want to miss this year’s event. Learn about the market and how to take advantage of it to grow and streamline your business. You will hear from experts about how to use today’s technology, list more properties, manage growth, rental statistics, and our expert panel will discuss this information with you. There will be a 3 hour CE course on security deposits and a NARPM Designation Course “The Essentials of Client/Owner Relations”, as well as a trade show, lots of networking and fun.

 

Click here  to register.

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REFRIGERANT HUFFING DANGERS

Losing refrigerant, but can’t seem to locate a leak? Spotted some kids messing around by the a/c compressor? Each year individuals die from inhaling a/c refrigerant.  While not 100% fool proof, locking caps will cut down on this practice. Please have your maintenance tech check each and every unit on the property NOW, and make sure that you have the tamper resistant locking caps on any of the accessible valves. Reduce your liability now, comply with the law, and you also may be saving a life.  Want to see how bad this problem is getting? Go to www.uproarorg.org  In the meantime, buy your tamper resistant locking caps and install them NOW.

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RETURNING RENT PRE-EVICTION

Residents will often attempt to pay a partial rent payment or full rent, and you do not want to accept the rent because the resident is in noncompliance, the lease is up, or for any of the myriad reasons why rent would or should be refused.  The resident may pay the partial or full rent payment by hand delivery, throwing a check or money order in a drop box or by electronic payment. Acceptance of a partial or full rent payment can have significant, adverse legal consequences. The property manager must know exactly how to return this rent payment, be it a partial or a full payment.

 

Click here  to learn more about how to return that unwanted rent payment.

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SIDE AGREEMENTS AND FRAUD?

Your resident is only approved for $800 from Section 8, which requires that the lease base rent be a total of $800. The owner wants to charge $950, and the resident can afford it, so you make a side deal for the $150. Problem?  Your applicant on the tax credit apartment makes too much.  Fudge the numbers? Your tenant is headed to bankruptcy and wants to pay the rent up front for a year to stash some cash. Is this OK? The property is owned individually, but the owner wants you to make the rent proceeds out to an LLC he owns.  Is this fraud?  You make a one year lease on a three-month rental, and “wink wink” tell the resident he can break it at any time? Evading sales taxes? You know the condo association will not approve a pet, so you tell the applicant to “hide the pet”. Sneaky?  Be careful when asked to do anything out of the ordinary. It is not worth it and just plain wrong.


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RESIDENT REPAIR AND MAINTENANCE

A few weeks ago you conducted an inspection of a resident’s apartment home prior to making a decision on whether to renew the resident. You could not believe your eyes. The apartment home was filthy and a complete mess. In fact, your maintenance staff has refused to enter, as the apartment home is so disgusting. You spoke to the resident and told him he will soon receive a Seven-Day Notice to Cure. The resident was cocky and told you that as long as he pays the rent, it is not your business what his apartment home condition is, as long as he is not bothered by it. You wonder what Florida law requires of the resident in this situation.

 

Click here  to learn more about the repair and maintenance obligations of apartment community residents.

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PROPERTY MANAGER MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR OBLIGATIONS

Yesterday a resident walked into your apartment community management office and informed you that there are bedbugs inside her apartment home.  The resident then demanded that you hire a company to come in and remedy the problem.  You are well aware that an apartment community must arrange for routine extermination of roaches and other pests, but bedbugs seem to be completely out of your ordinary realm.  You call your regional manager, who informs you that the bedbug extermination is the resident’s responsibility. The resident has now pointed out that the law specifically places the extermination obligation on the property manager and tells you she will hire an attorney if the bedbug problem is not eradicated.

 

Click here  to learn more about the maintenance and repair obligations of apartment community property managers.

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APPLICATION HOT TIP – BLANKS AND N/A

Your excellent, awesome, detailed, attorney reviewed application asks all kind of pretty important questions, like, “Have you ever been convicted of a felony?” , “Have you even been evicted?”, and,  “Have you ever filed bankruptcy?”.  Your screening report comes back clean, and your applicant becomes a resident, only for you to find out that he is a sexual predator, just got out of jail, is in a current bankruptcy and has been evicted 5 times.  Did he lie on his rental application?  NO, but he did leave some important answer blank or indicate “N/A” in others.  Will you be able to get him out? NO. You get the point; NEVER process an application unless it is reviewed to be sure every single section is filled out. That “little omission” can cause you a huge problem later.
 

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COMMERCIAL LAW AND YOU – QUIET ENJOYMENT OF LEASE PREMISES v. CONSTRUCTIVE EVICTION - THE LINE HAS BEEN BLURRED

As a commercial property owner, you may need to exercise caution in regard to how you deal with commercial tenants and operational disputes based on a recent Appellate Court decision impacting and affecting the interpretation of "Quiet Enjoyment".  This recent Appellate Court decision has blurred the line between Quiet Enjoyment of Lease Premises v. Constructive Eviction.

 

Click here  to learn more about quiet enjoyment of lease premises and constructive eviction by attorney Kevin F. Jursinski of Kevin F. Jursinski and Associates.

 

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Commercial Law and You

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Law Offices of Heist, Weisse & Wolk, P.A.

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