We are buying a piece of property with a small house – we use it as a rental property- the original owner stopped cashing our checks monthly payments ? can she do that, and then say we haven’t paid her?

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We are buying a piece of property with a small house – we use it as a rental property- the original owner stopped cashing our checks monthly payments ? can she do that, and then say we haven’t paid her?

We have a contract, drawn up by her lawyer. She could only have a certain amount per month due to her social security and now she says it’s not enough. But we think its because he friend next door has too many living in their house. She hasn’t been keeping track of this past year, and asked me for the last year receipts, along with a copy of the contract. She has been in a nursing home. Well in and out of one this past year. So we are pretty sure she will try to take us to court. However, up until the last few months, we have never been late, nor missed a payment. We still haven’t but she just isn’t cashing our checks. So now we are sending them certified mail. and they can’t deliver them yet?

Asked on November 9, 2017 under Real Estate Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

As long as you comply with the contract, she *can't* legally refuse to accept your money, terminate the contract, refuse to sell to you, etc. Keep good records of your attempts to pay her (e.g. certified mail receipts; copies of all correspondence) *and* put any money she refuses to accept aside in a separate account opened for that purpose. That way, you could at need (e.g. if you have to sue her to enforce the contract) prove that you have the money and will pay it, once the court orders its acceptance. Keeping the money accounted for and separate supports your story that you are trying to pay, but she is refusing the money.


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