Can I be evicted for having a dog ifI something I clearly stated in an ad?

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Can I be evicted for having a dog ifI something I clearly stated in an ad?

I recently moved into a house, without a lease. I have emails stating our agreement to an extent (how much money, move-in date). However after responding to my ad that stated clearly I had a dog, and after I moved all my things in, they called and told me because of my pet I would have to find another place to move in a week or so. I had already paid for the month. They are refunding me in full, however this does not cover the cost of moving and the problem of having no home now. Can I take any legal action here?

Asked on September 21, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Michigan

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, probably not. If you have no lease, you have an oral (often incorrectly called "verbal") lease. With an oral lease, you are  a month-to-month tenant. A month to month lease can be changed or terminated by the landlord for essentially any reason on 1 month's notice. Therefore, your landlord could refuse to renew you lease on 30 days notice and not refund you anything. Refunding you the money is actually more than they are obligated to do. You can try to negotiate with them--could you board your dog w/a friend for 2 months, while staying here and finding a new place--or even consider giving up your dog, but remember that at the end of the day, without a lease, you really only have any certainty about your living arrangment for  one month at a time; another issue could easily crop up soon.


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