Legal Question in Real Estate Law in California

The house I am living in as a tenant foreclosed over five months ago and is now owned by the bank. I am currently paying rent to a property management company that the bank has hired. I have been contacting my old landlord attempting to get my security deposit back. The current owners do not require one. They old landlord agreed to give back the security deposit if we proved that the new landlord does not require a deposit. We showed the old landlord the addendum to our current lease stating the property management company is not requiring a deposit. However, the old landlord just said they now want all their personal property that is still currently in the house in exchange for the deposit (fridge, washer, dryer, spa... And several other things). The property management company doesn't care about those things, but also will not replace them if we exchange them for our deposit. I cannot financially afford to replace all those things and even if I get the deposit back it isn't enough to even buy the essentials (washer, dryer and fridge). Does the landlord have a right to that personal property at this point? Even though it has been over 5 months since the auction and repossession of the property by the bank? Who does the old landlord's personal property belong to? If it still belongs to the old landlord, do he/she have a legal obligation to allow us to use it until the end of the lease? Thanks!

Asked on 9/15/13, 3:33 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Anthony Roach Law Office of Anthony A. Roach

An attorney who was interviewing you in his or her office would want to know whether the items requested were part of the lease. In other words, weren't these items part of the leased premise? It seems to me that the times are leased by you, and can be returned to the landlord at the end of the lease.

Asking for the security deposit back without moving out is a bit bizarre. It seems to me that the security deposit should be held by the original owner until you have moved out, or turned over to the new owner to hold until you move out.

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Answered on 9/15/13, 10:05 am

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