If the house I’m renting was just foreclosed on and the deed has been transferred, what are my rights as the tenant?

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If the house I’m renting was just foreclosed on and the deed has been transferred, what are my rights as the tenant?

Asked on February 16, 2012 under Real Estate Law, North Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You unfortunately have few rights as a tenant. The foreclosure effectively terminates your lease, since the former owner is no longer the owner and can no longer give you possession. In the past, you could have been evicted almost immediately; since the financial crises, however, laws have been passed to provide at least some protection to tenants in your position. If the buyer (e.g. whomever buys from the bank or lender which foreclosed, such as at a foreclosure auction or otherwise) intends to rent the house out or otherwise make commercial use of it, I believe you may be able to stay for the balance of your current lease term, if you have a written lease for a set time; but if the new buyer intends ot occupy it him/herself, I believe you only get up to 90 days. The best thing to do is to have  a frank discussion with the new buyer, to find out his/her intentions and see if you can't work out something mutually acceptable.


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