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I really need honest advice right now. Roomate/legal issues, hysterical women, exes.

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by CrispyDelicious, Sep 28, 2009.


  1. Everybody is entitled one genuine "advice thread", right? I'll try to explain as best as I can:

    A few months ago, my roommate decided that she wanted to move in with her boyfriend. Fair enough, I thought, but we are signed to a lease that runs until May 1, 2010. So she initially gave me the strong impression that she wanted to me move out, so her BF could move in, and they would then have the 2-bedroom apartment to themselves - pretty sweet for them, right? But not so good for me - I would have to go through the hassle of moving, the cost of moving in both time and money, and most importantly - I would likely end up having to sign another one year lease - not a good thing since my current lease and my university education end at the same time, thereby providing me with the optimal conditions for moving with respect to job prospects (or even better, a new job). Well, after some deliberation, I decided that I'd rather deal with another roommate for a half year instead of a whole new lease and the hassle that would ensue.

    So we come to the agreement (her rather unhappily) that she would have to find someone to take her room in a sublet, so her and her BF could find a new place - frankly speaking, I like where I live and I don't want to leave. As time progresses, I hear almost nothing about this new roommate, nothing about a sublet... So I start to get suspicious. Asking her, she claims to have talked to the landlord, who said it's ok for her to move out Oct. 1, so long as she find a subletter. I talk to my landlord around sept. 1 and he claims that my roommate has not called him once, ever, about anything - most definitely not about moving out and finding a subletter. ****. So I field numerous phone calls and emails between the two (she is too broke to afford her phone, so she doesn't have minutes on it). The outcome: She is going to move Nov. 1, provided she finds someone to take her room.

    Here's where it gets sticky.

    The chick is my ex. She hates my guts. She is incapable of talking to me about this move without getting hysterical. I won't deny that I have been watching out for my best interests, but whenever we talk, she paints me as the devil. It is absolutely impossible to have a rational conversation with her, because the moment she hears something she doesn't like, she goes ballistic - yells, curses, insults, and either slams the door or hangs up the phone. Not exactly the best conditions for negotiating a change to a contract. I'm sure it infuriates her more that I have remained calm through every interaction, but freaking out just isn't my style.

    Screaming and emotional outbursts aside, she managed to get one person interested in the room so far, but he openly admitted to me that he is a pothead. In response I told him that it's his business what he smokes, but it's our business if he brings illegal drugs and other drug users into the house I live in, and that is not something I can abide. I haven't heard back from him. I suggested via email that she specify "no drugs" in the ad for the room, and, as usual, she flipped.

    Her latest outburst - a message on the fridge(heavily edited): "I have stopped payments on the postdated rent cheques, so it's up to you to find someone, or you will be kicked out as well." She is obviously not being rational. She is signed to a contract that she has not taken the proper legal steps to get out of.

    Which brings me to one of the few communities I know - virtual or not - where I can count on rational responses from relatively unbiased people.

    First: Does her threat hold any weight? If one of two people in a lease stops paying rent, what happens to her and more importantly, what happens to the other person (me)? What legal avenues (if any) can I pursue, both to preserve my legal status, and to to ensure that myself and my landlord are not at risk of being totally screwed?

    What would you do in this situation? While the onus is clearly on her to find a tenant to take her room, it is evident that I cannot trust her to do with with a modicum of success. Should I just bite the bullet and find someone myself, or should I investigate legal options to ensure that she is held accountable for her contractual obligations? I'm at the end of rope in terms of frustration - I'm in my last year of school(full time night classes) , working full time during the day as well and I'm just way to busy and old at heart to be dealing with such nonsense at this stage in my life - hell, I'm turning 27 in a couple of days and the last thing I want is this crap hanging over me on my birthday. I want this over with, but I don't want to get bent over and violated in the process.

    In a nutshell, what would you do, Talkbass?
     
  2. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2002
    Ohio
    Speak to the landlord ASAP. Explain the situation, and get his views. See if she is going to be responsible for her half, or if he will try to hold you responsible for it.

    My step daughter had a situation at college last year. Her roommate moved out of their two bedroom apartment, but the way the lease was set up, each tenant was responsible for their own rent, so my step daughter was in no way liable for the empty room and unpaid rent, as long as she paid her own rent.
     
  3. TrooperFarva

    TrooperFarva

    Nov 25, 2004
    New City, NY
    You said "we are signed"

    I take it then that she actually signed a lease? If that's the case, it's her responsibility.

    Speak to the landlord about it. He should hold her responsible, but if he sucks, he may just make it your problem.
     
  4. superfunk47

    superfunk47

    Sep 9, 2007
    Good advice, that. ^

    Don't let her get away with that crap. Make sure she's accountable.
     
  5. WookieeForLife

    WookieeForLife

    Sep 30, 2008
    PA.
    Yea, talk to landlord.
     
  6. Tama

    Tama

    Nov 19, 2008
    Bugtussle
    Jeez, sorry to hear of your problem CD.

    It can be a real mess renting with someone who decides to stick it to you.
    I don't know Canadian law, but I assume it is similar to ours.


    CW & TF have it right to start with--- Go see the landlord !!!

    Explain your intent to honor your part of the lease.

    If you cant come to a reasonable solution with the landlord, you'll have to see a lawyer.
    Good luck.
    Cheers, Dave

    p.s. your idea of a "drug-free" apartment is good sense. Like you, I don't care what others do as long as it doesn't involve me.
    Someone bringing illegal drugs into your apartment, and you fully-well knowing it, make you at least partially culpable.
     
  7. Following what everyone else already said. Get the landlord on your side ASAP. You DON'T want to have to deal with this if she starts crying wolf saying "I don't feel safe living with him" blah blah blah "I have no choice but to leave".

    How many months do you have left on lease? You could always give her the option of her new boyfriend simply "buying out" the rest of her share and leaving you alone.
     
  8. Thanks for the feedback. To those that asked - yes, both our names are on that lease. That's what has me wondering what is going to happen if she actually does bail out and run. I'm going to talk to my landlord tomorrow (or tonight if he calls back) and discuss this in detail with him. At the same time I'm going to try to impress upon her the seriousness of her potential actions. The landlord is already cutting her slack by taking one month's notice as opposed to two - he has every right (I assume) to take serious legal action should she outstep those boundaries.

    the lease goes until may 1, so there's no way they could afford to pay for it, as Stanley asked - they're both, I gather, rather poor.

    Regardless, step one will be to discuss this with the landlord. I'm also curious as to what will happen with this month's rent coming up.... But we can only wait and see. :(
     
  9. L-A

    L-A

    Jul 17, 2008
    Eh?
    Bring the fridge note to the landlord.

    Is her boyfriend a reasonable man? Is it possible to see if he wants this situation to clear up too?

    EDIT: You're not accountable for her payments. She co-signed and has to pay her part.
     
  10. ryco

    ryco

    Apr 24, 2005
    97465
    It is her responsibility to find a replacement roomie

    HOWEVER - since you are going to be living with this new person it may be in your best interest to find the replacement. That way YOU could weed out the undesirables and find someone who suits you.

    My #2 rule is: never reason with the unreasonable. A total waste of energy and sanity.
     
  11. Jared Lash

    Jared Lash Born under punches

    Aug 21, 2006
    Denver, CO
    +1 on both counts.

    And while both of you are responsible for the lease and any penalties in breaking it, YOU'LL be the one without a place to live if you can't pay the rent.

    She SHOULD be finding someone to sublet but I wouldn't rely on that. I'd start looking right away, especially since if you're taking charge of the process you can weed out sketchy people first.

    Talk to the Landlord, get his advice and make sure he knows the truth of what's going on and then do everything you can to make sure you don't get left holding the bag. It sounds like she may be irrational enough to leave and put herself in trouble just to spite you.

    Best of luck.
     
  12. crayzee

    crayzee

    Feb 12, 2009
    Mississauga, ON
    Good luck, dude.

    My sister had a situation where her roomie wasn't paying his share. He'd come home every once in a while with a busted face. Somehow, he never had the cash even though he worked double shifts as a waiter in a high-end restaurant.

    She booted him and found a replacement, but because she was the lease-holder, she was on the hook for the rent.

    Hopefully, you and your landlord can figure something out.
     
  13. Not certain, but I think you BOTH are responsible for the full rent amount, whether it is 1/2 you 1/2 her or all you. I know it's not the agreement you had with a roomie, but both your names are on a sheet of paper. If they come looking for money they will be going after both parties who signed.
     
  14. Balog

    Balog

    Mar 19, 2009
    Mukilteo, WA
    This. I don't know if Canada is different, but when I signed a lease with a room mate they were very specific that the rent was due, and if it was not paid we were all, equally liable. When you sign a lease it is not for "my half of the rent." It's like cosigning for a car loan; everyone on the contract is equally liable, and if one person flakes out, well.... payments still gotta be made. Maybe you could sue in small claims court, but if the rent in full is not there you will be evicted, it will go on your credit history, and you will kick yourself for not taking the step of finding another temp roomie.

    Talk to the landlord and see if he will work with you, but know that legally he can demand the rent in full and it's your problem if this girl doesn't want to pay.

    Also, should I assume this is a "We moved in together, but then broke up and now she wants to leave" type situation?
     
  15. Sigh... Yep, this is what worries me - that we are both equally responsible and that she is most definitely irrational enough to get herself into legal trouble, credit trouble, etc, just to spite me. If the landlord and the local gov't (who I will be calling tomorrow) tell me this is the case, then it seems my only recourse is it take the responsibility into my own hands, as she is clearly willing to jeopardize her own integrity to sully my own. Well, in truth, I think it's not so much to sully my integrity as it is just to make my life difficult. Details at noon... :meh:

    Oh and yes, we were dating, broke up, and now she wanst out.

    Note to self - never, EVER move in with the woman you're dating, under any circumstances. Ever.
     
  16. LCW

    LCW Banned

    Mar 2, 2009
    OREGON!
    I think how it works here is if she ditched out on her part of the lease she would be held accountable tell the lease is up meaning you could sue her for every month tell may for back rent or rent until you found a roommate, but your in canada i have no idea what happens there. I hope it all works out , not some BS you want to deal with while in school.

    I dont think i will ever live with a woman lol
     
  17. Welcome to the world of women. :D
     
  18. tl;dr
     
  19. Jimmy Bones

    Jimmy Bones

    Feb 24, 2009
    Baxley, GA
    Thanks for your wonderful input. You make every post you grace with your presence a gift to the world.
     
  20. tycobb73

    tycobb73

    Jul 23, 2006
    Grand Rapids MI
    Since you both signed it, you are both responsible for the whole thing. The landlord can take either of you to court and will take take the one he thinks he can get the money out of. If that is you, you then have to sue her. This is legally what can happen. Seen it on Judge Judy many times. :)

    The landlord may be nice about it and let you stay while going after her, but that is his decison.
     

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