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Hello Parents. I graduated from college in May and moved to California for my first job.
Here's my problem in a nutshell. I moved into a house with other young adults who had dealt with the owner and rental agency. They signed the lease, we all moved in September 1, but I was never given a lease to sign, (although I do have an email that states rent and security deposit amounts). My security deposit and three rental checks have been paid on time and have been cashed. Now the landlord and rental agency say there is no lease, claiming the landlord never signed it and now they refuse to provide a copy of what roommates signed. Landlord wants a new lease with increased rent.
We realize the roommates should have been more proactive re: lease. But, since 3 rent checks have been cashed, there is an email that states amounts, and they neither returned nor disputed the lease within 15 days, we feel that we should not be forced to pay higher rent.
Each time we have tried to talk to the owner or rental agency, they have literally yelled at us, calling us dishonest, manipulative, etc. We would like to stay in the house, pay the rent we agreed to, and leave after the one year is up.
Can we be evicted? How can we proceed if they claim they do not have a copy of what the roommates signed? Would the Housing Authority be able to help us, or would we have to consult a lawyer?
We aren't really sure what to do... It's very upsetting! Obviously, it has been a great lesson for what not to do next time. Any advice, guidance?