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Dunaway must pay up outstanding rent in landlord dispute

By Ashoka Lion Subscribe to RSS | July 16th 2012 | Views:
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1. CELEBRITY LANDLORD DISPUTES

Veteran actress FAYE DUNAWAY has been ordered to bring her rent payments up to date as she continues to fight eviction from her New York apartment.

The Bonnie and Clyde star leases a one-bedroom, rent-stabilised property in Manhattan's Upper East Side for approximately $960-a-month - almost half the going rate for the area.

Her landlord Henry Moses, Jr. filed suit against the actress in August (11) in a bid to have her evicted, claiming she's not eligible for rent regulation as she spends most of her time in Los Angeles. State laws require tenants to use rent-controlled properties as their primary residence.

The star hit back by alleging the apartment was in a state of disrepair and offered up her keys to the landlord, insisting she had moved out in May (11).

The two parties have been disputing the matter in court and Dunaway appeared in person for a hearing on Thursday (03Nov11) to try and settle the matter in closed quarters with Judge John Stanley. Dunaway's attorney, Steve Ginsberg, Moses, Jr. and his lawyer Craig S. Charlie, were also present for the discussions.

After the meeting, Charlie claimed Dunaway, who stopped paying rent when the lawsuit was filed, was ordered to hand over the outstanding money, while his client had agreed to carry out the required repairs.

A few things to consider or take away from this situation are:

1. Tenant’s should not stop paying rent if they are still under lease or obligated to. In Texas, our Houston and Dallas tenant’s have a procedure to deduct from rent for certain repairs, but those are limited circumstance, have capped amounts, and require prior notice.

2. Landlord and tenants should take the move in inspection process very seriously. Landlords should have pictures and video of the condition of the property upon move in. Our Houston and Dallas area tenants are told to turn in a inventory condition form after moving in to a property to insure that items not noted during that move in process are noted down. However, our property managers will try their hardest to work through the move in with a tenant to make sure all major items did not slip their attention.

3. Tenant’s need to know to document repair request to avoid issues and conform to many leases that require written notice for repair items.

2. Mo'Nique in landlord dispute over $370K

Mo’Nique and husband Sidney Hicks are in a quarrel with their landlords who claim they walked out on their contract, still owing $370,000 in unpaid rent.

The landlord sued the couple and a collection of emails between Sidney and one of the landlords, simply identified as Alice, has been released in the case, TMZ reports.

Sidney told the landlords that they should be “embarrassed” by the state of the Georgia home. Mo’Nique and Sidney claimed that the house smelled like dog feces, wet dog, and urine.

Alice threw her own uppercuts by bringing up Mo’Nique’s cancelled talk show. “We do understand that your business has been greatly affected by the cancellation of your weekly talk show,” Alice wrote. “However, we do not want the publicity and heartache/hardship for either of us.”

Sidney told Alice that she “has a poor man’s mentality…you talk tough when you are owed but run when you owe.”

In response to the couples complaints about the odor, Alice, who doesn’t seem the least bit intimidated by the couple’s celebrity, wrote in an email that, “Maybe the illegal substances you use in our home (i.e. WEED) has weakened your sense of smell.”

Sidney responded, “The only illegal greenery was with the illegal immigrant you brought on our premises to cut down the trees…Maybe the overuse of alcohol has affected you and your husband’s judgment.”

The emails go back and forth for 136 pages.

Mo’Nique countersued her landlords last year demanding she be let out of her $22,000-a-month-rental contract because of the foul scents. Mo’Nique also claimed that the house had a bad mold problem, an overflowing septic tank and the security gate was busted.

Mo’Nique asserted that there was a verbal agreement between her and the landlords, allowing her to renege on her contract with 60 days notice because of the problems.

The case is still pending.

Things to consider from hostile situations like this:

1. Repairs should be in writing to document timeliness of resolution and issues being noted.

2. All lease terms should be in writing to avoid misinterpretation of the issues.

3. To avoid damages from building, periodic inspections maybe necessary to insure that tenants are keeping up with the property.

If a owner struggles to deal with the time and sometimes hostile nature of a landlord relationship, they should consider hiring a property management firm to handle those matters.

3. JWoww's Landlord Sues Over 'Jersey Shore' Filming, Property Damage

In yet another "Jersey Shore" lawsuit, a landlord is suing Jenni "JWoww" Farley and a production company for more than $450,000 in damages.

The landlord, Stuart Levine, claims he began renting a New Jersey home to JWoww more than a year before she became famous on MTV's "The Jersey Shore," according to The Hollywood

Reporter.

But once the show took off, the rented home was used as a filming location without permission, Levine claims in his lawsuit. He's also suing for property damage.

JWoww's landlord Stewart Levine wants compensation for the unauthorized filming, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Levine's lawsuit also names 495 Productions, which produces "The Jersey Shore."

The lawsuit by JWoww's former landlord alleges breach of contract, and apparently claims that filming a reality TV show on the premises was not an agreed-upon use for the property. JWoww's rented home was filmed for at least five episodes of "The Jersey Shore," Levine asserts.

Levine insists JWoww and 495 Productions were unjustly enriched by their alleged contract breach. Unjust enrichment occurs when one party reaps a benefit at another party's expense; to make things fair, a court may order restitution.

The landlord's suit also claims conversion, apparently alleging that his rental property was so damaged that he deserves compensation. The landlord sure seems to be making a lot of allegations -- but other than physical repair bills, did he suffer any actual damages? A judge will likely have to make that call.

JWoww's former landlord filed his lawsuit Monday in a New York court, according to The Hollywood Reporter. JWoww, who was previously targeted in another lawsuit over the design of her tanning lotion bottles, has started filming a "Jersey Shore" spinoff with fellow cast member Snooki, the gossip site PerezHilton.com reports.

Ashoka Lion - About Author:
Jay Raman is the managing director of Ashoka Lion, a Houston and Dallas area property management firm Jay and his team have been in the investment property and association management business for the past 6 years and manage over 160 residential (single family home) properties in Houston and Dallas as well as several associations. To get more great articles or ideas, you can also visit Ashoka Lion’s Website, Facebook, or Twitter Account. visit: http://rental-property-management.ashokalion.com/

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