What rights do I have as a tenant leasing a home that is now in for closure

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What rights do I have as a tenant leasing a home that is now in for closure

I have noticed different people coming
to the home I am leasing taking
pictures. When i asked about it I was
told the mortgage had not been paid in
a very long time. I have been
receiving mail from the home owners
association too. When i called all they
would tell me is the HOA had not been
paid

Asked on January 31, 2017 under Real Estate Law, Texas

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Federal law gives some rights and protections to a tenant in the event that their rental goes into foreclosure. Tenants who have a written lease can continue to occupy their unit until the end of the lease period, or 90 days, whichever is longer. The exception would be if the new owner intends to move in and occupy the home as their primary residence, in that case, a 90 day notice to move applies. Additionally, if state law provides more protection than federal law, state law applies. However, even if a foreclosure action has already been filed, as long as the landlord remains the owner of record (i.e. is still on the title to the property), the tenant must continue paying rent to them. Therefore, a tenant must be careful to find out just when title to the property passes at auction or otherwise. Former landlords have been known to try and continue to collect rent even after they no longer own the property. As a lawful occupant of a property in foreclosure, a tenant should be notified by the mortgage lender as to the sale/transfer date of the property. After this time, the landlord will no longer be the legal owner, so the tenant should be informed where to send their rental payments by the new owner. Sometimes an incentive can be negotiated between a new owner and a tenant so that the tenant agrees to move out early; it is known as “Cash for Keys”. Pursuant to this, the owner will pay a tenant to leave the property in exchange for a cash payment.


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