Updating and repairing a house comes with the job of being a homeowner. While some homes undergo massive remodels, others are subject to minor aesthetic alterations. Replacing the existing septic system or hot water heater are not exciting projects, but they may be necessary to keep up with building codes or the basic functioning of the home. Donald Woods is one such homeowner who was required by the town of Southampton, NY to update his home due to an apparent permit that was not acquired in the mid-1960’s when the second story to the home was built. Woods purchased the home in 2003. In order to bring the home up to code, Woods was instructed to install a new and improved septic system that would reduced nitrogen contribution. Continue reading
Landlords all across the country are fighting government orders that afford leniency to tenants and temporarily ban evictions. About nine states, including New York, Kentucky, Connecticut, Arizona, and Illinois, are entertaining lawsuits filed by suffering landlords. The argument in many of the lawsuits relates to the unconstitutional nature of the orders in regard to contract impairment. While many landlords have devised workable plans with their tenants, other landlords are dealing with tenants who are taking advantage of the opportunity to not pay rent. While current measures are protecting tenants, landlords are still expected to pay their mortgages. Continue reading
Inattentive landlords and hotel owners: consider this a warning. Those tiny bugs that congregate around your sleeping quarters can become more than just a pain in your hind quarters. After the well-publicized infestations that occurred in the Big Apple and several other large cities across the United States, people and the civil court system have become far more cognizant of these pesky nuisances. In one of the more eye-opening verdicts, an Annapolis woman was awarded a windfall settlement of $800,000. The jury who heard the case was clearly intending to send a not-so-subtle message to negligent property owners.
A landlord in Baltimore made quite a profit by faking property damage and suing his former renters for restitution. That is, until Hong Park, a nonprofit legal aide looking into the matter for one of the renters, found the landlord’s claims to be a little fishy. The landlord had provided supposed invoices from contractors detailing repairs to the property. Park noted some suspicions about the invoices though — namely, that they didn’t have any company logos and that they were dated when collections began, not when the renter moved out. The lawyer called up some of the referenced contractors and, lo and behold, all of the invoices were forged by the landlord. Park sent the info on to the Maryland Attorney General’s office, and some subpoenas and a class-action lawsuit later, the owner of Ager Road Station Apartments will pay a $500,000 settlement to the former renters he swindled. For anyone who’s dealt with a less-than-honorable landlord in the past, this settlement is a welcome victory.