Moving in before signing a lease

6 Replies

We live in Florida and recently bought a new house and decided to rent the old one. My brother has a friend that lives in California that was looking to relocate to our area. My brother asked if this friend could rent the property. We haven't met the friend but thought he might be a good fit and told my brother to have him contact us.

My brother's friend never contacted us. We weren't worried about finding a renter seeing as we had several people inquire about applying.

My brother kept assuring me his friend was coming and still interested, but without ever meeting him or speaking to him we kept our options open.

We slept in our home for the last time on Sept 22nd with the assumption that we would spend the next week or so moving the rest of our stuff out. We had someone hired to clean it and repaint the walls. Prior to showing/listing it to potential renters.

On Sept. 24th while we were at work my brother let his friend in and they began piling what was left of our things into the living room and moving his stuff in. When we got off work and stopped to work on moving the rest of our things we were shocked at what we saw. Some of our the things were broekn. Any groceries we had in the kitchen were gone.

I talked to my brother to let him know his friend never talked to us about moving in, never signed a lease, and did not have permission to move in yet since our house wasn't ready. We put pad locks on our gates to prevent them from coming back in without us being there.

Finally his friend contacted us about signing a lease. We told him he'd have to wait until the house is ready and apply like everyone else. He seemed upset but understanding since we are the owners. We let him know he needed to get his things but hasn't nor has he made contact about getting his things. We really need to finish getting our house ready but he has furniture in our house, nice furnature that we don't want to be responsible for. What should we do with it?

When you do business with family or friends, it is important to treat them like any other client/customer. Too many relatives or friends think they deserve special treatment and they will walk all over you and screw everything up. This is a perfect example of how that happens.

If a family member knows someone that may be interested in your rental, make your application process very clear to the family member and that you will not consider the friend unless they follow the same process everyone else goes through.