Legal Question in Real Estate Law in Massachusetts

I own a three bedroom condo in Massachusetts. I allowed a friend to stay with me rent free for three months. Then, we agreed (nothing signed) that he would pay reduced rent. He paid (late) by check for two weeks of rent, which I cashed. Later, he paid (late) by check for three weeks. The check bounced. I offered him a revised agreement with consequences for late payments. He refused. I told him he needed to leave. He did, but left furniture behind. After the bounced check, he owes me about $700 in reduced rent for the six weeks he lived here after having paid for the first two weeks by check. What are his legal rights, specifically to the things he left behind, and (heaven forbid!) trying to legally take up residence again and forcing me to go through the legal process of evicting him. Lastly, what are my legal rights to getting him to pay what he owes, and in regards to the things he left behind?

Asked on 7/01/16, 9:51 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

As a Landlord you are required to put his stuff in a bonded storage unit and pay the first month. You can sue him in small claims court for the value of the bounced checks and non-payment of rent. One problem in suing him for the rent is that your condo association probably requires leases of not less than 6 months, and your friend may use that as a defense.

Good luck

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Answered on 7/01/16, 10:42 am

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