Is it illegal for a landlord to collect rent money during a foreclosure process?

by oliver on September 30, 2010

Question:

Is it illegal for a landlord to collect rent money during a foreclosure process?

I live in Florida and am currently a tenant in an apartment complex. I’ve been renting there for 3 years. In January 2010, I was served with foreclosure papers which stated that the property is in foreclosure and that my landlord had 20 days to respond. He hasn’t paid the mortgage since June of 2009. Now, he is asking for this month’s rent. Is this illegal? Do I have to pay him rent while the property is being foreclosed on? Why should I pay him if HE isn’t paying?

Answer:

Paying your rent during a foreclosure process is considered legal until the house is completely foreclosed on. As soon s the right of ownership is still with your landlord and the auction or foreclosure sale has not been competed yet, it is his right to collect payment from you. Since you are living in his owned property you are required to pay the rent irregardless of what he does to his money. Most likely, you landlord will make a way in order to prevent the foreclosure process from happening.

To prevent the foreclosure, your landlord may talk to the lender or the bank to work out an agreement such as forebearance, refinancing, loan modification, or any other option that would prevent the foreclosure process from raking place. If an agreement has been made, you are no longer facing foreclosure and you can still have your home. However, if the foreclosure process accelerates, the property will be sold to the public thru an auction wherein the highest bidder will take ownership of the house. Once the ownership is transferred from your landlord to the new owner or winning bidder, you will no longer pay your rent but you will be forced to leave the property at once.

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