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tenant in unpermitted out building

We purchased our house as a foreclosure a few years ago. It has an outbuilding that was already developed as another living space. We had a friend come up to Oroville and needed a temporary place to stay so we housed him there. Afterwards we thought it would be good to have some additional income and to rent it out. So we did. Fast forward to about 5 months ago, one tenant was not paying his rent, so we asked him to leave. He ignored our request and then came back with "This place is probably not permitted and I will take you to court." This caused me to research heavily and I could not find any help for the landlord in this situation. I did look up up my permit history and the garage is not even on it. At the same time I had a second tenant in there that was trying to help the situation and coach the other into leaving and doing what is best. Well, at that time we decided we did not want to be held "hostage" in our own house and started planning on how to get the other tenant out. We do have signed rental agreements and the remaining tenant is in steep violation and now has refused to pay rent after we asked them to leave in 45 days. We posted a notice stating Aug 31st was there last day, and now he is threatening to take us to court as well. His financial situation is dire - he is awaiting school loans that may not come through. He says he can't move him and his (in violation of our terms, girlfriend, now wife) out because they do not have the money and no one takes couples for a one room rental. I tried to talk to him, but he insisted he was going to take me to court. A week and a half later after seeing the notice posted on his door, he is trying to negotiate with me in saying I wont take you to court just let me save up enough money to move out. Truth is, he is not motivate to do this in a timely manner and my family wants to do one of two things. 1) Vacate the final tenant and get the place permitted for storage and rent our main house out with the outbuilding as storage OR 2) vacate the tenants and use the place for storage for my growing family of 6. The second violation he has is that he has 3 cars on the property, two are broken and he should only have one car on the property. We are not in the Oroville city limits, but are in butte county.   What can I do to get the tenant out? Can I take the tenant through the eviction process if the place is not permitted? I am considering moving my family out of the main house and cutting his utilities that he has not paid for, but this puts my family and property in danger of his retaliation. Also, I did post a notice on his door, he saw it, I have witnesses and I took it down. Do I have to officially post or give him a written notice of rescending?
1 Comment

This is when you talk directly to an attorney. If you have a signed lease that should hold up, now I can't say that you won't be fined for an unlicensed rental property but as long as the place has habitable conditions, utilities, etc. you may be fine. If he did sign a lease I would start the legal process to keep you property and family out of danger.
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