If Iam renting an apartment which is in foreclosure, can they kick my children andI out?

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If Iam renting an apartment which is in foreclosure, can they kick my children andI out?

 

Asked on June 30, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Massachusetts

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Federal law gives some rights to a tenant in the event that their rental unit goes into foreclosure. Tenants who have a written lease can continue to occupy their home until the end of the lease period, or 90 days, whichever is longer. The only exception would be if the new owner intends to move in and occupy the home as their primary residence. In that event, a 90 day notice to move would apply. Those tenants with a month-to-month lease, or no lease at all, have to be given at least 90 days notice to move. Additionally, in cases where state law provides more protection than the federal law, the state law applies.

You should be aware however, that even if a foreclosure action has already been filed, as long as the landlord remains the legal owner (that is they are still on the title to the property), a tenant must continue paying rent to them. As a lawful occupant of a property in foreclosure, a tenant should be notified by the mortgage lender as to the sale date of the property. After this time, the landlord is no longer the legal owner and the tenant will be notified who to then pay rent to instead. 

Note:  Regarding the return of the security deposit when a property is foreclosed on, unfortunately there may not be much that a tenant can do. Typically, in such a situation, a tenant’s only legal recourse is to sue the landlord in small claims court, although collecting may be difficult.


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