Florida Foreclosure Laws – What Happens To Tenants When Landlords Get Foreclosed On?

Florida foreclosure laws have specific provisions to protect the rights and interest of tenants in a situation when the landlord gets foreclosed on. When you rent a property, you sign a lease agreement. You must be well aware of what happens to that contract if your landlord goes behind on his/her mortgage and end up getting the property foreclosed. Following are some of the legal provisions that the laws in this state have provided for situations like these.

Protecting Tenants At Foreclosure Act Of 2009

As per this 2009 Act, automatic termination of the lease contracts applicable on buildings that are going to be foreclosed is strictly prohibited. For example, if a tenant has signed a lease agreement of twelve months and if the property gets the foreclosure notice during the fourth month, the tenant has the legal right to continue living in the building for the remaining period (8 months). It is just that the ownership of the building will change. The tenants may get a new landlord. However, Florida foreclosure laws have also made some room for exceptions. The tenants may not be able to continue living in their residence if the new landlord wants to occupy the building. In that situation, the tenants will have to vacate the property within three months. The new landlord must give them a 90-day notice in this regard.

Get Informed

In order to be on a safe side, you must keep yourself up-to-date on whether your landlord is behind the mortgage. When you know things in advance, you can plan accordingly to avoid the unexpected hassles in future. You can contact your local state department in order to find out detailed information about the ownership and financing status of the property you are residing in. If you are just not sure about it, but suspect that things may go wrong, you may like to consult an attorney.

Repayment Of Security Deposit

Florida foreclosure laws have also made certain provisions regarding the repayment of the security deposit. In most cases, tenants have to pay a certain amount of money to the landlord as part of security deposit. This deposit is refundable when the property is vacated. When a property gets a foreclosure notice, it is a clear indication that the landlord is going through a deep financial crisis and that he/she is not even in a position to repay the security deposit. So, how are you going to get your money back? As per the laws in Florida, even if a property is being foreclosed, the tenants still have the legal right to get the deposit back. However, for this, a certain procedure has to be followed. Generally, it involves filing a suit in a small claim court. Here, it is important for you to keep in mind that you can file the case in the county where the rented property is located even if your landlord lives somewhere else.

As per Florida foreclosure laws, when a tenant files a case, the court requires him/her to go through a pre-trial hearing where attempts are made to reach some kind of mutually agreeable agreement between the tenant and the landlord. The trial occurs only if no such agreement is finalized.