Apartments for Cheap

Questions and Answers

Your Questions About Duplex For Rent

March 9, 2012

Ruth asks…

I rent a duplex, it has been sold in foreclosure, should I move out now?

We have lived here for over a year, in a duplex. The other side was vacant UNTIL TODAY when new tenant moved in. We knew our landlord was in default on the mortgage, and have continued to pay rent in hopes he would not let it happen. But he DID. And now that the foreclosure has occurred (last week) we have found in the courthouse filed mortgage documents a rider which states our landlord (and I quote) has “no borrower right to reinstate after acceleration”. Should we just get ready to move out? A notice was posted on the property 2 weeks ago, which advised of the foreclosure proceedings on the duplex, and gave notice to respond within 30 days, which we had an attorney do so on our behalf, that we occupied the premises, as if that might help. AND the new tenant next door just told me she paid 6 mths. rent IN ADVANCE to move in here, signed a lease yesterday, and didn’t get a receipt. Does anyone think she got scammed, and does anybody else think I best find a new place to live ASAP?

Administrator answers:

If it’s been sold at the sheriff sale, then the landlord is no longer the owner of that house. Your lease agreement with him is no longer any good, as he can’t force you to pay rent on a property he doesn’t own and has no right to collect payments on.

Unfortunately, that new tenant did get screwed. She can try to sue for her payments back, especially if she paid with a check or money order or some other trackable form of money. If she paid in cash and didn’t get a receipt, it will not be easy to prove she even paid the money. She might as well try to continue living there for as long as possible to get the most from what she paid. The receipt may be part of the lease, though, if something mentions paying 6 months in advance. Check that paperwork, if possible.

Have your attorney contact the bank’s attorneys and find out what their next steps will be and how long you will have. Then you can begin planning what to do and where to go and how long you will have to move out.

Daniel asks…

i rent a duplex. 2 weeks ago my fridge broke, i still dont have one what can be done?

i rent a duplex, and it came with a working fridge. 2 weeks ago i came down and the fridge motor blew, ruining all my food. i contacted the landlord that day, and 2 weeks later i still have no fridge. im not asking for him to replace the food, but am i able to ask for a reduced rent? 2 weeks and counting is completely unreasonable. i have to eat out or order, and i cant save any leftovers. am i able to ask for something back?
btw the landlord is my uncle, and since im family i think hes expecting me to be more forgiving! errr!

Administrator answers:

Simple! Call your auntie and mother and tell them you want to buy a new refrigerator but have no money. Tell them how much it will cost to buy and remove the old one. Tell them about the hardship you have and you’d love it if they would buy you a new machine. Give them the phone number for the store where you found the fridge. They can pay by credit card, and you can arrange delivery.

Then, gossip about how forgetful your uncle is. They’ll get you the fridge AND have a laugh at your uncle’s expense.

Forget all this stuff:
Call your landlord and tell him you expect to have the unit repaired or replaced refrigerator by the end of the day, or you will take further action–whatever is necessary to fix the problem. Don’t elaborate further. Be sure to include “two weeks without a refrigerator is unacceptable.”

If the machine isn’t working by 5 pm that day, call a repairman for a quote to fix the unit, and go online to find the cost of a similar unit.

Call the landlord morning of day 2: “I have a quote for repair and a quote for replacement. It cost $$$ to repair. It will cost $$$ to replace. Have the unit working by 5 pm today or I will take appropriate action myself.” Do not tell the landlord what action you will take.

Day 3, call a lawyer who specializes in tenant law (most represent landlords–be careful!). Pay him to for advice. You will learn that you should be compensated for loss of food by your renter’s insurance.

Lizzie asks…

We rent out duplex and I am looking for some decorating ideas!?

We rent a duplex and we want to be able to decorate, but we can’t paint or do anything drastic. I am looking for ideas to make our home more “us”. We have the typical pictures and personal items, but the white walls are just getting to be boring. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Additional Details:
We are going for a country cabin kind of look in the living room. We are both avid hunters and we have quite a few animals on the walls as well as deer antler sheds on the entertainment stand as well and on the book case.
For our bedroom we aren’t really going for any specific theme, but when he works nights it is really to bright with the white walls. BUT we aren’t really supposed to put anymore holes in the wall.
I remember watching a tv show maybe with Vern Yip, and he was updating a renters bathroom with ways to cover the cabinets, but I don’t remember how he achieved it.
I just feel stuck in a rut with they way everything looks.
Remember: We aren’t allowed to paint anything.
We can’t do anything permanent or drastic.

Administrator answers:

Its great that you want to personalize your home.
You are renting all the boring elements of a suburban duplex.
You want to create a style for your living room that has a country cabin feel to it and that shows off your trophys, Your bedroom feels stark,Im guessing you have dark furniture in here. You also mention updating th bathroom, and an overall need to Get Out of Your RUT, right? I want to help you develop your own style skills you can take it with you wherever you go..
First: Consider the beige elements as background, and its consistent throughout the house and will support your FREE EXPRESSION of your INDIVIDUAL STYLE! Think about who you are, what you love and develop your own THEME…is it adventure that you love? Romance?
Nature? Once you know this, then create a FOCAL POINT in each room. LIVING LARGE: Paint one wall a copper red color, to show off your trophies. (You can paint it out when you move, its worth it) Paint your entertainment center and bookcases black or white, unless they are fabulous already. Arrange your things, edit them down to the best of the best. Add a dhurrie or KILIM area rug in this room to enhance the color and style. AMBIANCE: I want you to clear the clutter out of that bedroom then invest in three lamps that are rustic and beautiful and express your style, get three way bulbs so you can adjust your lighting and change your overhead bulbs to pink low watt 40s, then add some rustic candle holders and fat vanilla candles and use them. In the bathroom I want you to paint one wall opposite the mirror the same color as the living room accent wall,then hang a trophy or painting and watch the mirror double its effect, again clear all clutter. Install an outdoor rug in wood with a brown border, and a small fern. I hope this helps! If you find yourself responding to my ideas with a yeah but, then you must love your rut!

James asks…

Company I rent my duplex from won’t fix this. What are my options?

I am renting a brand new duplex for $750/month. It is 1200sqft. Our electric bills have been over $200 dollars each month and we couldn’t figure out why because we have the heater set at 68 degrees. I took off the cover on the floor vents one day when I was cleaning and realized that where the duct work came up into the floor where the vent was, it had huge gaps all around it. My husband went into the crawlspace and I could see him with his flashlight in the crawlspace when looking through the gaps. So we realized that we are losing a ton of heat because it’s going to the crawlspace. We told the company we rent from and three weeks later no one has even looked at it. What should I do? I have called them more then once. Our neighbors are having the same issue as well.

Administrator answers:

I doubt this falls under a legal fix. Buy some heating tape at home depot, it should not be more then 5 bucks and seal the holes.

Paul asks…

To bulldog owners, Do you recommend them to couples who rent a duplex?

Ok, I posted a question earlier this week about the pitbull terrier. First off, they seem more than a first time owner can handle. Like before, my fiance and I rent a duplex. I’m looking for a dog next year to chose that would fit to its immediate surroundings. A two bedroom duplex, with a backyard and a patio, with a garage. But the thing is, im gone for work eight hours a day… so, seperation issues? Ive been doing research on bulldogs like english bulldogs. Just a little lazy guy who can go cruising in 54′ chevy with me or just sit next to me while watching a movie. So, to experienced owners to this breed, do you think it would be alright for this breed to enjoy its home?

Administrator answers:

I think an english bulldog would be fine. ALL dogs need at least a short walk every day, but they are definitely the epitome of lazy LOL!

Thomas asks…

My boyfriend & I are looking for a rental house or duplex in Michigan to rent. We want to live in Macomb Co.?

Near Clinton Twp, Harrison Twp, Roseville. We have two dogs and a gold fish. We are looking to keep the rent on the lower side. Does anyone have anything open??? Please post availabilities.

Administrator answers:

Try www.craigslist.org for available units or www.detroitfreepress.com You may also want to check realtors online–sometimes they have stuff that is rent with option to buy…

Mary asks…

The best day(s) to buy newspaper when looking to rent a house/apt/duplex/etc.?

I am looking to move and not sure what day is the best to purchase the newspaper. What day or days has the most listings in the classifieds for homes and apartments for rent? Thanks.
I’m in California, USA.

Administrator answers:

Today! The best deals are scooped up the first day the advertisement runs in the newspaper. While Sundays tend to have more listings these are what was left over from the previous week that nobody wanted.

Donald asks…

I am looking at buying a duplex and want to rent 1/2 out and live in half. Is landlording a pain or investmet

Will landlording be a good investment and maybe make me some money or will it be more of a headache? I am looking for real answers only, please.
I should add, this is in Wi. The duplex costs about 100,000 and currently one renter is paying about $450 a month and I would live in the other side.

Administrator answers:

It’s usually a good investment. Think about it…..on the rental 1/2 you get $450 to use toward the mortgage which builds equity in the house. Also, you can deduct or depreciate all expenses related to the rental 1/2 (including 1/2 of the house itself). So most (or more) of your income from the $450 is usually wiped out on your taxes (or you may even have a loss to deduct).

On the downside…..if the renter fails to pay the rent you are still stuck with the bills, & have to figure out how to get them out. In addition you have to fix everything that breaks. Are you handy? Or do you have someone available who is?

If you go thru with it, the first time they are late even one day with the rent fine them. Make sure it’s in the agreement & stick to it.

Make sure you check with your local township/city to make sure you don’t have to pay business taxes (and/or get a business license).

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