After you give 30 days notice, can your landlord keep your personal property if you still owe rent?

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After you give 30 days notice, can your landlord keep your personal property if you still owe rent?

After giving my 30 days notice, I went to collect my property from the old house. My landlord said since I still owe her rent/back rent and that she will keep my items until I can pay her off.

Asked on October 20, 2011 under Real Estate Law, California

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

No, your landlord cannot keep your personal property in California as any form of security for unpaid rent if you are unwilling to allow such. If a landlord is owed unpaid rent, he or she has the several options:

1. have the tenant sign a written document such as a promissory note agreeing to the amount owed with payments over time at a set allowable rate of interest.

2. sue the tenant for the amount owed, obtain a judgment and then try to collect upon it.

If your landlord keeps items belonging to you until you pay owed rent against your wishes, I suggest that you consult with a landlord tenant attorney.

Good luck.


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