I hate to evict someone from my cousin's apt---help!

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by TerryJ2, Apr 15, 2011.

  1. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I need strength, wisdom, and advice for myself and the tenant at my cousin, P's.
    Backstory: A mutual friend asked if C could stay at the apt on an emergency basis. We said fine. She has not pd us anything for mo's.

    9 mo's later, C seems to have no intention of leaving.
    She has nowhere to go.
    She has anxiety issues.
    She's got a dog. A bunch of boxes where she keeps her things.
    She was referred by a friend. I am calling the friend to ask if she can take her in. (not my job, but have to expedite this and you'll see why).

    I just called C a little bit ago to tell her that I accepted the mover's estimate and booked the 19th and 20th for the move. Their window of arrival is 8:30-9 a.m. but they did not state the ending time. She said that was ridiculous. She had things to do. I told her the superintendent could be there, but she was worried that her things would be taken by mistake. I told her I'd email to get a better grip on the time.
    I am going to call her back when I get a time estimate, at which time I also have to tell her that:

    1) I am signing a surrender agreement for the apt, which is rent controlled, and she will be evicted on the 1st if she isn't out by then. On the 1st and every day thereafter, there will be a $500 fine. (This came as a surprise to me. Sheesh, the things that people have up their sleeves. I haven't played chess in a long time.)
    2) She must box and label all of her things, empty out the dresser so it can be shipped (some of her things are in a dresser), box up her own clothes that are in there, and label them clearly with her name so that they are not shipped. (How hard is that?)
    3) She must call me on Wednesday to tell me what her plans are.

    What else should I say? She fidgets and hems and haws and talks in circles and makes flat statements like, "They can't do that! That's against the law!" which is exactly the same way P talks.

    Just because she's nuts and taking advantage of us doesn't mean she has to drive me nuts. I hate to throw her out on the street but it's not like she didn't see this coming, and not like she isn't taking huge advantage of the situation. I do not want to get into an argument with her but need to be firm.

  2. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    I don't think you actually NEED any help, Terry.

    It sounds to me like you are handling it quite well!

    I guess if she says "that's against the law" you could say something like, "Yes, for the legal tenant... However since your name isn't on the lease (deed, whatever) it doesn't apply to you, I'm sorry." But don't let her drag you into anything else.
  3. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    You can do this. figure out how much a comparable, not rent controlled apartment in that area would cost to rent. Then multiply that by however many months she has been there.

    As she hems and haws, tell her that this is the way it is, and it is going to happen. Period. Give her the directions (I would fax them to her or pay to have them overnighted to her so that you have proof that she received them, even if you have to pay for Sat delivery. This way she cannot say she didn't know ahead of time or you didn't give her all or the correct instructions.

    As she starts to hem and haw, or to argue or say you are being unfair, point out that she has been there rent free for X months. Tell her you could have rented the place for $ each month and over the months she has been there you (P) have lost $$$ (the amt you figured out for rent times 9 mos that she has been there). Tell her that you had NO idea that she intended to stay for a month, let alone almost a year, when you agreed that she could stay there. You have allowed her to stay there for so long out of the kindness of your heart but she has to go now. Did she think you were going to support her for the rest of her life?? Why does she think that she has a right to stay even one more night when she has paid NO money for rent and the use of the furnishings for so long? EVERY night she stays there is a GIFT from you (P) and Christmas is over and Santa's bag is now closed.

    Then let her know that if she wants her things she is to pack them up according to directions because you are NOT responsible for returning anything that she doesn't have packed up andclearly labelled according to the directions you gave her. You are also not responsible for storing them, so if they arrive with the rest of P's things you will not keep them or attempt to notify her. IF she wants to have them back she will need to touch base with you occasionally (maybe tell her to call monthly?). Iif you have found them and they are still with you/in storage then she can pay you for the cost of shipping them (weight of the items multiplied by the cost per pound to ship and whatever fee per box or pound you paid for packing) to where you are AND the cost to ship them to wherever she is living then. If they are broken, damaged, lost or stolen this is NOT your responsibility because you told her how to pack and label them. If she really wanted them she would have not only done that but also moved them out of the apartment to avoid confusion, mistakes and lost items. Also tell her that you are not likely to hold on to them even for a few days after you unpack them - IF they are unpacked. As P is not in an apartment but instead is in a nursing home, she does not have all of her possessions with her. Boxes that go into storage will NOT be unpacked or opened and searched if this woman is missing something. If she tells you that she is missing something before you unpack, you will TRY to set it aside for her IF you remember what it is and you find it.

    She has taken great advantage of you and has NO right to make any kind of demands at this point. in my opinion she should be kissing your feet and asking what she can do to make this process easier for you. Whining about how this is unfair goes way into the territory of ungrateful and taking advantage.

    Has anyone checked the condition of the apartment on a regular basis since this woman checked in? If no one has checked it out regularly and especially recently this woman could have robbed you blind. Or the furniture could be destroyed, painted, chopped up, who knows what?? I hope that she has taken good care of the apartment and P's belongings but I wouldn't bet on it. what kind of person moves into someone's apartment for 9 months and doesn't pay a penny in rent? The few people I know who would do this make this a real worry in my mind.

    It did cross my mind that the woman could be sending the friend $ for rent, thinking the friend is the apt manager. This could give her some legal rights she otherwise wouldn't have. I don't know if she is aware of these rights so it might not be a problem either way, but it is something to be aware of if she brings it up. Of course if she has been giving rent to the friend, well, that is a whole other mess to handle.

    I hope things go smoothly and you can get P's belonging with little or no problem or drama.

    Have your husband bring home an Xray of a spine and look at it while you talk to her as a reminder that you have a backbone and won't let her walk all over you. Not kidding. A friend's husband left her 2 weeks after we moved away. She held some things that didn't fit into our UHaul when we moved. Her husband was trying to take everything but the kids and I sent her an exray of my spine taken years before when I had surgery. She put it on a window by her desk and looked at it when she talked to him. She said it helped her stand up for herself and the kdis. Maybe it would help you?

    (Hey, would little lockets with a picture of a spine from an xray inside be a good reminder to stand up for yourself for women? Maybe I could make them and sell them to women leaving bad relationships?? Boy do strange things pop into my brain!)
  4. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    LOL! I love the spine imagery!

    This woman will most likely have to go to a woman's shelter in Bronx or Brooklyn. A far cry from Upper W. Manhattan but hey, she had it great for almost a yr.

    I called the mutual friend but she said she has nowhere to put the woman. :( She said all the same things you and I have said. She volunteered to call and tell her the news but then we decided that would be a very bad idea. I told her that she can talk to her in a few days and tell her that she is aware of the situation but I should be the one to deliver the news.

    The really bad part is that the moment I tell C, not only will she blow up, but she will call my cousin P, and she S**t will hit the fan, because P is still in denial. THAT will be interesting!!!
    I will have TWO irrational people on my case.

    Oh, and I looked up how to block calls on Verizon but you can't block cell phone calls. :(

    No good deed goes unpunished.

    by the way, I don't think P has a whole lot of "normal" friends, Know what I mean?? Illegal immigrant from Dominican Republic, woman who shows up on her doorstep and lives there for nearly a yr, actors who are too busy traveling to even attend her husband's funeral 6 yrs ago, another woman whose dogs tripped P 5 yrs ago, causing P to break her tailbone and end up on oxycodone and of course, the friend never apologized, and now she is out of touch ...

    Like attracts like. That's my take on it.
  5. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I called. She blew up.
    Told me I hadn't given her enough time.
    Told me she is finding it increasingly difficult to talk to P because she doesn't want it closed down and I am doing it against her will.
    (ooohhh, now that was manipulative.)
    I told her that I would talk to P It was not her responsibility.
    I left another msg with-the owner and said that I would be happy to call a lawyer, or the police, or fly up, whatever I have to do. I said that I want to be on the same side on this issue.

    I am now driving over to P's, which I hate to do with-this terrible cold, but I am telling her point blank that I signed the release and it's over.

    Prepare for meltdown.

    Oh, and difficult child is home with-a stomachache and is on the computer and refuses to go to opening ceremonies for baseball.

    My life s*cks.
  6. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    O Terry--

    That sounds so hard!!!

    Sending (((hugs))) and support!
  7. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Thank you.

    I told P, and she didn't have a meltdown. I did.

    I told her I've worked my butt off taking care of her and trying to do everything right and I can't believe C made it sound like I was FORCING P to do this because I'm nothing but a rat. P was very sympathetic and soothing ... but despondent, I could see. I told her I was worried about what C would do to the apt in the meantime ... trash the place? What about the things I left behind? P said I was just letting my imagination run wild, which I sincerely hope, but if you had heard the complete about-face that C did, the tone of her voice, OMG, you'd think the same thing.

    So, the owner said not to fly up because it would just cause a confrontation. He said he'd start the eviction process. I told him I couldn't believe he even had to--she doesn't have a lease and we have no contract. He said NY law is always on the side of the tenant in cases like this.

    But this isn't a tenant. It's a freeloader.

  8. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    she is a tenant even if she never paid a dime but did get her mail there. Unfair I know. Now you do have to check out the landlord tenant laws in the burroughs. I cant spell that word. I know that a tenant can move out without giving the 30 days but not sure about the other way around. Do you have proof even email proof that you have asked her to leave some time at least 30 days before now? Also do u have proof where you have asked for rent.
  9. rlsnights

    rlsnights New Member

    Dealing with someone like this in writing with certified mail when you're talking eviction, unpaid rent - that's your back up.

    Whatever you told her today, put it in writing and have it delivered with her signature acknowledging receipt. The owner can do it if he's willing and probably has done so before now.

    Hope it all works out OK.

  10. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Thank you. The PO is closed here today so I will have to send a ltr certified mail on Monday.

    I am mailing my POA and a change of address letter to the Manhattan PO to have all of P's mail sent here. Every now and then something slips through.
  11. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Oh, and to answer the Q about things in writing ... nothing is in writing. It was all a gentleman's agreement. :(
  12. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    When your Aunt is the voice of reason in all of this? Things are REALLY weird. lol -

    I have a hard time trying to be nice when a free lunch has been given for months and a free lunch is still expected. I think that's where I wouldn't have a problem stating any of my thoughts matter of factly.
    1.) The arrangement was temporary.
    2.) She's taken what was supposed to be a two week stay and turned it into a nine month domicile
    3.) She's gone so far as to put her possessions into someones dresser? wow.
    4.) She brought a pet, and her boxes and made herself at home or to home, I'd want to see her attempts at finding her own lodging in writing.
    5.) What does she feel isn't 'legal'? The home isn't hers, it's your aunts to sell, she is squatting - time to go. End of conversation. she needs no notice.
    6.) The fact that the "so-called" friend that recommended her to come stay CAN NOT take her in even temporarily? Left me reeling - Wow really? You can't even put her on your couch? Speaks volumes about what SHE knows about this woman. Doesn't it? (Note to self: Send that looser a thank you note for all MY troubles)

    7.) Hug my Aunt because for all her quirks - this is the final hoorah for giving up part of her life I'm sure is very difficult, and if she did allow aspiring actors to 'flop' there? Well, she really did have a heart didn't she? Taking in strays isn't for everyone, but it does show she has a compassionate side, despite her eccentricities. Ya gotta give it to the hoofer - she's a sparkly costume in a trunk in someone's closet of a mind. Hard telling who slept on her couch that's a big part of our entertainment lives now. (atta girl)
  13. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    Ohhhhhhh and as a foot note - not to be honorable mention - Look whose taking care of her now! - Atta girl! :consoling::bravo:
  14. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    My thought is same as Star's, wouldn't she be considered a squatter?
  15. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    NOW the truth comes out ... mutual friend isn't a mutual friend.
    "We met in a bar."
    OMG. If I could go back in time ...
  16. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Sorry you are in such an awkward position. Sending strengthening hugs. DDD
  17. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Thank you. I just went onto the power company website and requested a power shutoff and to close the acct. Don't know how long it takes ... I typed in May 1 but suspect it will be longer, maybe mid-May.