Expiration of PTFA

The Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009 was set to expire on December 31, 2014, if it was not extended through further legislation.  According to information received from the office of Arizona Congressman David Schweikert (R-6th Dist), and confirmed by the office of Arizona Congressman Trent Franks (R-8th Dist), the PTFA extension was not included in any end of year legislation, and has therefore expired.

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April 2013

The following are questions that we have received concerning landlord-tenant issues:

The first question was: A section 8 tenant was not paying their portion of the rent but section 8 was, is this considered a partial payment preventing an eviction? The answer is no. The tenant’s portion and the section 8 portion are considered separate leases, so that you can take the money from section 8 and still proceed with your eviction on the tenant who has not paid their portion. 

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Should You Require Your Owners to Complete the New Disclosure Forms?

When the AAR created the new Residential Lease Owner’s Property Disclosure Statement, many property managers raised concerns about how their owner clients would respond to any requirement to fill out this document.  There is a fear that listing every single issue the owner knows has ever been a problem on the property may cause a potential renter to be wary of renting the home or that failing to list an issue because of forgetfulness may create automatic liability.  Each broker needs to consider the pros and cons of using the new form and institute a consistent policy in their office to avoid fair housing concerns.  A brief analysis of some of the current concerns of using the form may help guide brokers through this discussion.

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February 2013

Some of our clients have recently been seeing an inordinate amount of small claims or Justice Court lawsuits from tenants suing the management company for the return of their security deposit.  If certain requirements are met in the parties’ lease agreement though, management companies can generally be released from liability from these sorts of lawsuits because the refund and accounting of the security deposit is the obligation of the property owner even if the management company provides that service under the terms of their Property Management Agreement.

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Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!  I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday.  The following are questions that our client’s have asked and we hope the information provided can help you, should these issues come up.

The first question we had was concerning recording conversations with an employee or a resident at the apartment community.  In Arizona, you can tape record a conversation as long as one party to the conversation consents to it.  That of course, is obviously the person doing the recording.

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Happy Holidays from Hull, Holliday & Holliday

Can you believe it’s Christmas time again? At the law offices of Hull, Holliday & Holliday, you can just feel the excitement! All the toy soldiers are lined up in their best Christmas fashion, the garland and tinsel sparkle with Holiday Greetings, and the “Major Award” from the movie “A Christmas Story” shines its gaudy brightness for all to see. The staff and attorneys merrily sing their favorite Christmas Carols as they work like Santa’s Elves preparing your evictions so you can kick as many tenants to the curb as possible before Christmas Eve. Someone’s going to be on the naughty list!

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July 2012

The following are a few questions and answers we have received over the last month or so.

The landlord wanted to know if a tenant could have more than one service animal.  Generally speaking, two documented service animals would be considered reasonable.  Any request beyond that would need to be looked at and determined if it is a necessity or not.

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June 2012

The following questions have come in regarding day to day landlord and tenant issues.  

The first question was from an apartment manager whose tenant was evicted and prior to the constable being ordered to come out and do the lockout, had come into the office and surrendered all of their keys.  When the manager went to the apartment to inspect it, they found that the resident had left some of his personal property behind.  The question was whether the manager had to hold the property for twenty one (21) days.  The answer is no.  Once the keys have been returned, the tenant is returning possession and everything in the apartment.  I would still photograph what is left behind and if there is anything of value, try to get a hold of the tenant to see if they wanted to pick it up within a short time such as 24-48 hours.

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February 2012

The first question we received was from a client who executed a lease agreement with an error in the monthly rental amount.  The person that prepared the lease typed in $7.00 per month as the lease amount, rather than $700.00.  The client was concerned that they might be held to that.  Generally in Arizona if there is a mistake, or the lease is ambiguous, it gets resolved in favor of the tenant and against the landlord, since the landlord wrote the lease.  In this particular situation, because the amount is obviously wrong and you can show that other units rent for the same amount, the landlord should be able to enforce the $700.00 amount on their tenant.

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Fair Housing and Reasonable Accommodations

The Civil Rights Act of 1866 and the Fair Housing Act:  These two federal laws prohibit discrimination based upon race, color, religion, sex, disability, familial status or national origin against those persons who are seeking housing.  Arizona enacted fair housing laws that are equivalent to those federal laws.  Additionally, some local cities have additional ordinances that make it illegal to discriminate against a person’s age, marital status, or sexual orientation.

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January 2012

The following were questions that were asked of our office and the responses that were provided.  Please feel free to email us with any questions your may have concerning your tenant issues.

The landlord was receiving possession back of a home that the tenants had completed the lease and were moving.  The question was whether the fines that were imposed against the owner by the HOA as a result of the tenant could be deducted from their security deposits?  The answer is yes, if the tenant caused the violations, they would be responsible for the fines associated with them and passed on to the landlord.

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November 2011

Happy Thanksgiving, Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays to all of our clients.  May 2011 end on a high note for you and 2012 be even better.  We appreciate the opportunity to be your attorney and the loyalty you have shown us.

For this month and year end questions we have the following;

We did a walk through move out inspection after a tenant left and found illegal drugs in the apartment.  What should we do?  I would call the local police authorities and see if they wanted to seize the drugs.  They may simply just tell you to dispose of them since it may be difficult to prosecute without any personal knowledge that they were actually the tenant’s.

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