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Stipulation/Impending Eviction

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#1
Washington State

My landlord is trying to evict me because of 'messy living conditions' and accidental damage to a small area of carpet. I have paid and hired a house cleaner and took care of everything including the carpet. I did default on the cure or quit by not giving a written response. Since then we were served with Eviction Summons & Unlawful Detainer and the landlord's attorney is threatening to file and take us to court unless we comply with a slew of things in a stiipulation including hiring a professional carpet cleaner and paying at our cost even though the damage has been taken care of. (They haven't come in since the compliance check though.)

My question is, since I have fully complied and accepted responsibility for the attorney fees, what are my options? Is it unreasonable to ask for this to be over with and dropped? Do I have any other options that I haven't considered?

Thanks for your thoughts and time.
 


FlyingRon

Senior Member
#2
Did you have the violations fixed within the ten-day limit? If you have proof that you did (even though you didn't respond to the notice), then you may dodge the eviction. If you didn't have the stuff fixed within ten days, the landlord has the right to have you out.

You can negotiate all you want, but frankly, if you were non-compliant, there's not much reason the landlord would have to come off their position.
 
#4
Thanks, @FlyingRon.

We thought we had, yes. Except on deep cleaning and moving the upstairs room to the downstairs, we discovered the protection we placed over the carpet failed and resulted in a stain. We had taken care of what we could at the time, and when they came in for the follow up/compliance check, we'd explained what happened. They had not been able to previously see this section of the carpet before the follow-up; neither did we until we decided to go all out on clearing that room.

We were never able to get clarification or specific complaints about what we were supposed to clean. Our cure or quit referred to a section of the lease describing our duty to keep the premises tidy and sanitary. (Although from what we gleaned, the issue mostly centered in my father's deceased belongings that I had inherited though, so we got most of that orderly, put away, or stored, and general house keeping was redone, etc.)

Anyways, the rental agent came in and did her thing, and on leaving said they'd contact us again with more information. We didn't hear from them for over twenty days. That's when we were served the Eviction Summons and Unlawful Detainer.

In any event, we responded and did our Answer and what not and spoke with the landlord's attorney and began a stipulation agreement. He indicated his client was most worried about the carpet. I tried on several occasions to tell him that we had already taken care of it and that it wasn't an issue anymore. But hey, I guess I will? My concern isn't so much having them cleaned, but as to what I'm forfeiting or signing away with the stipulation, as it pretty much declares me to forfeit my own lawyer consultation once it's signed.
 

FlyingRon

Senior Member
#8
They are not obliged to accept your "assurances" that you cleaned the carpet to stop the suit. As pointed out, they're free to evict you out at this point even if you had completely replaced the carpet. If they're willing to stop in exchange for proof of professional cleaning, that would seem to be your only out.
 
#9
They are not obliged to accept your "assurances" that you cleaned the carpet to stop the suit. As pointed out, they're free to evict you out at this point even if you had completely replaced the carpet. If they're willing to stop in exchange for proof of professional cleaning, that would seem to be your only out.
Right, I can see this. That's pretty much why I'm going to do it anyways. Is there anything else I might be missing? Like, should I try and prove het carpet is okay? I mean, like send her some photos? I'm fine with another walk through? I'm basically just tying to make the best of this where it stands right now. I'm not fluent in legal process.
 

FlyingRon

Senior Member
#10
If the lawyer says the client is willing to inspect, perhaps. Again, they are under no obligation to budge. My suggestion to you is to get out before the court date and move that the entire process be dismissed as you are no longer in possession of the property. Expect that they'll still take the cleaning charges out of your deposit.
 
#11
If the lawyer says the client is willing to inspect, perhaps. Again, they are under no obligation to budge. My suggestion to you is to get out before the court date and move that the entire process be dismissed as you are no longer in possession of the property. Expect that they'll still take the cleaning charges out of your deposit.
Right, I understand they have the upper ground here and I'm not trying to make a case against that. So I guess my question is, would offering something like the pictures or something be an act of good faith? I mean, she doesn't want to go to court as much as I don't, but if I can minimalize my costs at this point I'd like to try. Does this make sense?
 
#12
@FlyingRon, I'd have to disagree with the cleaning costs. The issue is fixed. They might not have to take my word for it, but if I move out (or inspect again) they'll see it for themselves. The stipulation puts the cost of the cleaning on me. Again, I'm not saying I'm unwilling. My question from the first post is answered from what you've said, so I'm just trying to explore my options for damage control so that when I do sign, I'm not agreeing to something I can't afford/will end up defaulting on, etc.
 
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xylene

Senior Member
#15
You didn't like my advice then and you won't like it now.

Take all of your excess belongings out of the apartment and place them in a storage unit. If they are insisting on pro carpet cleaning, get it done. Hire help to assist you in doing all of this. It will be much cheaper for you than an eviction. Having your things stored will be help with a move anyways, as you now claim to be intending to do...
 
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