Apartments for Cheap

Questions and Answers

Your Questions About Apt For Rent In Nj

May 14, 2012

Jenny asks…

Is it legal for landlord to charge rent before lease begins?

I signed a lease in NJ on 8/22 with a starting date of 9/1. They gave me the keys on 8/22 since the apt was vacant. Now they are trying to charge me for 8/22 through 8/31 since they gave me the keys. Is this legal?

Administrator answers:

You legally took possession and moved in 8/22 so you DO owe rent starting from that date. Legally you were on a verbal month to month least from 8/22-9/1.

Richard asks…

I own my home, want to kick roomate out for non payment in NJ?

I am a homeowner in NJ. Last jan. my uncle was evicted from his apt. He needed a temp. place to stay, so I let him stay at my home at no charge. At the end of March I had him sign a month to month lease because it was no longer temporary. Since April I have been receiving some rent from him but not all, sometimes months go by without him paying anything. I want him out of my house asap, what do i need to do?

Administrator answers:

You give him a 3 day pay or quit notice, and then file an unlawful detainer if he fails to vacate.

Mandy asks…

is unemployment income calculated as income for rent subsidies?

If someone is on welfare in nj and collecting money from welfare and then given a rent subsidy based on that income,are they ineligible once the welfare stops and they go on unemployment because unemployment is not true income?
I heard you must have some kind of TRUE income to qualify?
Or because they already have it they cant lose it?
Its an apt complex subsidized by the government!
I really need someone in the know about this. thanks

Administrator answers:

Question. How can you draw unemployment if you have not been employed?

As long as you live in public housing you have to report any change in your income as it happens. Unemployment is cash in your pocket, you have to report it to the apartment manager.

Ken asks…

How to get Civil court case (Landlord-Tenant) removed from Credit – Hudson county, NJ?

I rented an apt in Jersey City in January 2009 for 8 months, from condo owner- Landlord. The building management provided amenities – internet/cable TV) which was not provided to me since the landlord was delinquent in payment to management and was in foreclosure. I had to pay monthly checks to management and that would credit towards landlords balance.

Landlord files a eviction case and takes me to court, the judge dismisses the case as it was indicated in bylaws that tenant must pay management in case of landlords delinquency with mgmt. I finished my term satisfactorily.

A year after that i am planning to rent another apt and did a credit check I have 5 eviction cases on my credit report (all are same ones) one show it was dismissed others said new suit, suit pending.

I am very much worried. How can I get it removed totally from my credit? In first case it should not hit my credit since the case was dismissed right? Do you think its a mistake? Which credit bureaus should I approach – Trans union, Experian and Equifax? Please help me. Thanks.

Administrator answers:

This is a court order, you need to go back to the court clerk and get your judgment filed correctly. If they did not file it it will show up as pending forever, no one is going to look at this for you without a request.

The credit agencies do not have legal power to remove court orders from your credit report, only the issuing court/judge can do that.

Sharon asks…

gave a security deposit decided to not take apt. have not signed lease yet can they keep my deposit? NJ?

i decided not to take apartment two weeks prior to move in. i have not signed a lease or any contract saying if i back out they keep my money. all i did was give 1.5 months rent for security deposit. i have to move out of state so i can’t take the place
no they did not give me any receipts because i kept copies of my checks as reciepts. and i signed nothing. they did take off the market for me but never said if i changed my mind they would keep the money. they just asked if i was certain i wanted it. i was at the time but situations arose and now i can not accept the place in good faith.
it was taken off the market back in july and i was scheduled to move in and sign for sept. 1

Administrator answers:

I have a form that prospective tenants sign when they give me a deposit. It states that the deposit paid to hold the apartment will be forfeited and under no circumstances returned if tenant notifies landlord that they do not want apartment. I also have a date I will hold the apartment until…then if it goes past that date, they also lose the deposit. All legal in Pennsylvania. In my opinion, if you signed NOTHING, you have a right to your deposit back. Did it say anything on the receipt they gave you, (if they gave you one). Was their a verbal agreement that it would not be refunded, because that does sometime stick in court. I think you gave them enough notice, but how long was it off the market because the landlord thought you were going to rent it?

EDIT: Wow, that is a long time to hold the apartment. He probably could have rented it many times over during that period of time, with someone that would have signed a years lease. Now with the 2 weeks notice, he will probably lose income he may have had if he didn’t hold it for you all that time. You may unfortunately have a fight on your hand to get that money back. If you take him to court for it, due the long period of time he held that apartment, you may lose. Then, on top of losing your deposit, you will also have additional costs due to court costs and possible his attorneys fees. He might even courter sue you for even more money. You may be SOL, sorry. It was probably a lot of $$ lost on your part.

William asks…

Can landlord make me pay for full month’s rent?

I am apartment hunting now. I am aware that I must give written, 30 day’s notice when I find a new place, not a problem. But what if my move out date happens to fall in between the 1st or end of the month? For example, if my move out date is April 12th, can my landlord make me pay for all of April’s rent or just for the days in April that I occupy the apt? My original lease does not address this and only confirms the written notice part. If I don’t have to pay the full rent, where can I look for reference so that I can present that to my shady, money hungry landlord who I’m sure will try to get every last penny out of me before I move. I live in NJ. Thanks all….

Administrator answers:

Your state law and lease will tell you specifics, but in most cases, you’ll be responsible to pay for the full month in your final month of residence.

Why? Because as a monthly tenant the term of your lease is one month. Notice must be issued before the start of a term and runs through the end of a term. You can certainly negotiate with the landlord for a mid-month termination date provided your notice exceeds the minimum of 30 days. For example, if you gave notice on or before March 1 to leave April 12th, the landlord could agree to pro-rate rent – but may not be obligated to do so unless your landlord/tenant law says he must.

Most leases end at the end of a month. Most people are looking to move around that time. The landlord isn’t being tricky or greedy. He’s trying to make your turnover coincide with the time that someone else will be looking to rent. For him, it’s a business decision and nothing more.

If your landlord was giving YOU notice instead of you giving notice to him – he’d have to play by the same rules. It works both ways.

Robert asks…

$50,000K per year – max. amount to spend on rent?

If I made $45,000 OR $50,000K per year (not including taxes in NJ or NY)….what is the max I should spend on rent when looking for apt, I have no car? My expenses are about $1,000-1,200 per month. I don’t have any one to help me figure this out. if someone wouldn’t mind, that’d be great and I’ll PICK best answer, lol.

Y! IM: misscamillabrightside

Administrator answers:

OK, so $50k a year comes out to about $4,167 a month BEFORE taxes… Estimating based on the high state tax state you live in and your income bracket, I’d say to be on the safe side, you’ll pay about 1/3 of that in taxes and other fees.

Which brings us to about…. $2777 a month after taxes. The maximum you should spend on rent is about 1/4 of that… But living in NJ or NY, you might have to go a little higher because I know rent can be very high in those states.

1/4 is about $700 – not a whole lot for where you’re going to live.

1/3 is about $925 – better, but you might have to look for a roommate.

Thomas asks…

Senior Citizen Rights in North Bergen, NJ 07047?

Can someone please help me answer this for my senior citizen neighbors. The reside in a 2 family home in North Bergen, NJ and pay $1,000 rent per month which does not include heat or gas or electric. It is very expensive for these two people to eat let alone pay the rent alone.
Their stove broke, and they asked the landlord who lives in the 1st floor to please fix the stove and he has ignored alot of their requests. Now they cannot cooke either and have to carry food home for warm meals. One month later they asked again, to please fix the stove and they said they can have their old one that works fine. The problem is, they arent the cleanest people in the world and Im not sure what they cook, but it does overpower the entire block and stinks. I would never want to use that. The landlord also has created his own driveway parking, which blocks part of the sidewalk, has rented out an illegal apt in his basement, and frequently takes the rear stairwell and walks right into this elderly couples apt. They are scared to say or do anything for fear they may need to move and her husband is not in the best of health at this point. They have lived there for the past 30 years and I dont think they have a lease. They lived there from the previous owner.

Does anyone know the law? in Hudson County NJ or where you can find out? Isnt the landlord supposed to fix these things? Are senior citizens actully paying these enormous amounts on the retirement money they are on? MY GOD IM SCARED. Can someone lead me this to help for them? How do they get a stove?? They cannot afford one.

Administrator answers:

If they were smart they’d move out. It’s abuse and the landlord is taking advantage of them. Their are plenty of subsidized places they can move into and have a proper lease and be treated fairly. If they’ve been living in the place for 30 years they could have bought it. Anyway it’s better for them to get out. I don’t think it will get any better.

Paul asks…

Landlord wants to include new ‘clauses’ on lease are they legal ?

I live in rent control building, Bayonne, NJ- 15 year resident and never ever had any problems, My landlord is elderly and his son has taken over. 11 page lease with over 500 clauses, WOW !
Here are some new changes:
Give up my right to a jury if we ever went to court. <– this is my legal right if I wanted a jury!
Sign waiver he is not legally responsible if I or visitor gets hurt on premises, such as ice or stairs.
Stove is his but if it breaks I am to replace it
He can enter anytime he wants non-emergency 8am – 11pm without prior notice.

I am liable for all damage to apt., even if it is an accident, let’s say potholder catches on fire by accident + theres some damage to apt-I am responsible.
Rent due on 1st, if I pay on 2nd $50 late charge and if he calls for rent an additional $25.00. After the 5th an addtional $ 50.00 on top of that. < it's always been till 5th, after 5th $50 late fee, I've never had to pay late fee.
I have looked it up + found NJ Laws saying we don’t have to sign due to unreasonable clauses.
Which I did advise him about. Now He says he can evict me.
How do we come to an agreement on a lease ?? What rights do I have ?
*He said in voice mail “This is approved by NJ, he can’t change it and I have to sign it or he’ll evict me.” Note: my rent is fully paid and he has our securtiy given 15yrs ago with interest.

Thank You All for your help and Merry Christmas.

Administrator answers:

Relax! It isn’t uncommon for a “new” landlord to try to pull something like this. Their ignorance of the law always surprises me but doesn’t shock me anymore. Some of these clauses are completely legal, but because the lease includes illegal ones it can make the entire lease voidable. You have 2 choices here (as you apparently already know):

1. Sue your landlord for offering you an illegal lease.
2. Wait for your landlord to sue you (in eviction court) and defend yourself based upon the offered lease.

In either case, once the judge sees the lease he will likely give the landlords son a lesson in real estate law and hand him the bill for the court costs. Good Luck!

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