What to do if my landlord wants money for removal of my property after the roof caved in due to a hurricane?

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What to do if my landlord wants money for removal of my property after the roof caved in due to a hurricane?

It was hurricane damage and resulted in the total loss of my property. It hit in the middle of the month after rent was paid. They offered me no other unit, did not refund me for half the months rent, and did not return my deposit. They couldn’t be reached over the phone and wouldn’t return calls. They sold my “debt” to a credit agency and now i have a negative mark on my rental history and credit report. The agency wants $600. Is their anything that I can do besides hiring a lawyer?

Asked on September 6, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Texas

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You can sit and wait to see how the matter proceeds - which will be to result in a court proceeding against you - and then counter sue the landlord.  May I ask: was there an insurance claim made here by anyone that covered your property?  There should have been.  And if not, then you have a right to strike first and to sue the landlord for lost rent, lost security and for you loss of property in this matter and I would name the credit agency in the matter as well.  Sometimes taking the bull by the horns is the best way.  Then you are in the driver's seat and have more control.  Make sure that everyone is properly served with the paperwork. I assume that this will in small claims; ask for whatever handouts they have on proving your case as well.  Good luck.


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