If a roommate breaks a verbal agreement on rent and decides to move out but leaves all their belongings behind, how long until it is considered abandonment?

She was supposed to have all her belongings out at the beginning of this month but has yet to do so. Can it be sold or given away?

Asked on June 2, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Florida


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

The landlord can send the tenant written notice telling her that she has 15 days to pick up the property or it may be destroyed or sold. However, a fellow or co-tenant has no right to dispose of his or her roommate's property. Therefore, you need the landlord to addrss this matter; under the lawe, the landlord MUST send the abandoned property letter.

Note: if you are the landlord for this roommate--e.g. you own the space, or the roommate was subleting from you if you are the main tenant--then you are the one who must send the letter; send it to someplace where you believe your roommate will receive it.

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