What to do if I just signed a lease and paid the landlord my first and last months rent but he cashed the check early?

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What to do if I just signed a lease and paid the landlord my first and last months rent but he cashed the check early?

I assumed he would wait until the 1st of the month to cash it considering the current tenant is still living there until the 31st. He cashed it 7 days early. Is this legal?

Asked on October 27, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Washington

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

From what you have written, what the intended landlord did with respect to the deposit of your two (2) checks for the unit is allowable under the laws of all states in this country.

The concern is if the landlord does not provide you with occupancy of the unit per the terms of the presumed written lease you signed. If that happens, then you need to consult with a landlord tenant attorney to discuss what your legal recourse would be.

I suggest that you call and write the intended landlord to confirm the move in date for the rental.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

There is nothing in the law requiring a landlord to wait until the tenant moves in to cash a check. As long as the landlord provides you possession of the premises on the agreed upon date, everything is fine; if he fails to provide you with possession however, then he is in breach of the agreement and you may be able to recover the money from him.


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