What to do if I have not been able to get in touch with my landlord and they just left a 3 day or quit notice on my door and won’t respond to our oral agreement?

I have not been able to get in touch with my landlord concerning issues with the building I’m currently living in. The finance account manager called and left a voicemail on my phone a while back, stating the company would offer half off first month’s rent to remedy the situation of not having a dead bolt lock on our door, as is required by state renter’s laws. The same woman came to my door with the lease, a month into my already living in the apt, asked me to back date it to the first of the month, then said she was not honoring the monetary agreement. I came home today, to find a 3 day or quit notice on my door, stating I still owed on first months rent (i.e. they were not honoring the oral agreement left on my voicemail). As stated previously, I have tried to contact them to discuss this situation, and they have not responded to the messages I have left. I do not know who my building manager is, as the previous one is no longer employed here. I am not really sure who even to contact at this point.

Asked on July 22, 2012 under Real Estate Law, California

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

An attorney to help you sort through the details is who you need to contact but I would not do so until they have started eviction proceedings, which they will if you do not pay or leave with in the 3 days.  Do you have a lease in place?  That lease will govern and generally speaking, oral modifiations will not be upheld.  Do you still have the voice mail?  Bring it with you.  It could be of some help in proving reliance but not in getting you out of your obligations.  Now, you may be entitled to some sort of abatement  - reduction - in rent given the state law.  Once you answer the proceeding you ask the court to pay your rent in to court until the matter is resolved.  Get help.  Good luck.


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