Difficult landlord won't renew lease; I'm planning to leave but want to stay 6 months


#1

My landlord is difficult and unpleasant to deal with and she doesn’t want to renew the lease. I am planning to leave Taiwan anyway, but 6 months after the lease ends. Moving during my last months here would make it impossible to finish writing my dissertation since I also work full time. I need advice on what might happen if I just keep paying rent even though the lease expires.

Does she have right to enter my apartment without my consent?
What happens if I changed the lock?
Given her personality, she may well escalate, so I need to know what to expect.

The mediation bureau in Xindian seems unlikely to side with a foreigner against a landlord. They told me that I would need to go to the mediation bureau in her jurisdiction, where SHE lives, not the one for my neighborhood. Is that right? She lives so far away you need a car to get there, and I don’t have one.

Background:
When I first moved in here, I had just been forced out of a previous apartment by neighbors at Shida Rd. who didn’t like me having rotating roommates, one of whom was a black man. New neighbors seemed to imagine I sleep with all my roommates–maybe that was just a convenient excuse. I left that location six months after moving in, because neighbors wanted to specify who I could and could not share my apartment with, and the landlord would not oppose them for my sake.

In my current place, the same thing started happening again. (I suppose I emanated trauma, which invited further bullying.) Again, one of my new neighbors complained to the landlord and told me she didn’t want a westerner in the building because it would be a bad moral example for her children.

The point is, my current landlord is hard to deal with. She harassed me for the first year I lived here and made explicitly racist demands about who I could and could not live with. I made friends with the neighbors who stopped complaining. I also enlisted many people to deal with the landlord. The point is that this landlord can be very hostile. I have watched her also bully my neighbor, who is her tenant. She has also alienated other homeowners in the building.

I don’t want to spend a lot of energy researching and preparing arguments, dealing with harassment, etc. I just want to stay until the end of August–six months past the end of the current lease.

What are my options and what are the likely issues to arise?

Thanks for your advice.


#2

You have no options. The landlord does not have to renew your lease.


#3

Of course not. But the process of evicting someone takes time. So I’d like to know what happens if I continue to pay the rent and do not move out when the lease is up.

Two reasons: 1) I have surgery scheduled near the date the lease ends and cannot lift things for two months after that.
2) I plan to leave Taiwan anyway. All the furniture in this 4-bedroom apartment is mine. The process of getting rid of it and moving will be so time consuming that I cannot finish writing my Ph.D. dissertation. The amount of labor involved is prohibitive. Probably difficult to find a short term lease somewhere else.

This is a 4-bedroom apartment. I have 100,000NT of furniture here. The time involved in selling it or giving it away and the cost of paying movers is just impractical six months before I actually leave Taiwan. As I said, I work full time and am writing a Ph.D. dissertation. I can’t afford the labor and cost of moving early.


#4

How about trying to get into your university dorm? That way you could work away at your dissertation with minimal distraction.

Guy


#5

Do the right thing suck it up and leave. Though some landlords are a holes I side with the landlord on this situation.

Short Term Houses
https://www.facebook.com/Taipei-Short-Term-Apartment-Rentals台北短期租屋-541808842504346/



#6

This. Get rid of your non-essential stuff now, not when the lease ends. Secure a space in a dorm before the lease ends and before your surgery.


#7

Did you already contact to Tsuei mama foundation for housing and community services? They provide legal counseling and help for mediation on housing issue.

Increasing monthly fee wouldn’t change your landlord’s mind?

Living after the contract end might become a legal trouble in a court, and I guess it could consume more time and money than just moving.


#8

If you plan on overstaying, stop paying rent because a) the landlord will not return your deposit b) the landlord won’t be able to collect anyway as you left tw by the time any court decision comes down.

This is a civil matter, so there is 0 risk you will not be able to leave the country.

Also, change the locks and if the landlord enters sue her and eventually settle it in exchange of her dropping the charges as well.

PS. The above is not the kosher thing to do, but if you are looking to maximise short term gain and don’t really care about that wreckage you leave do the above


#9

But OP needs to stay 6 months after the contract end. Iirc, usual deposit is 2 months.


#10

Yeah, but its unlikely she will be evicted in that time. Or, worst case scenario, she might be evicted around month 5.

If she is planning on going down this route, she might just as well stop paying all together and pocket the 4 months she lives for free.


#11

So your advise would be to risk eviction while recovering from surgery?


#12

But, her surgery is in the end of when her lease ends so she got like 5 months to recover before she gets evicted.

She said she needs two months to recover.


#13

Are you sure the landlord will behave according to the law?


#14

no, so my advice is on the assumption he/she does.


#15

Sounds like the best advice to me. If that’s not possible could your employer sort you out accommodation for 6 months? I’m guessing it’s a school.


#16

I have moved twice already, and the cost of movers was 3k and the second time 4.5k

They lift everything and put it down where I told them to put it.


#17

I work full time and am trying to finish a Ph.D. dissertation. Moving will occupy the time that I have to write the dissertation.

The landlord will probably stay within the law…probably. She uses very legalistic language. But she can be very nasty.

We probably need to negotiate a reasonable solution, and not by communicating through Line.

I prefer to do that in mediation, with a third party present. But if mediation requires going to wherever she lives, that is difficult. * Does anyone know if that is true? *
(Too bad I don’t live in Taipei City where the landlord mediation office is quite professional and helpful.)

No, I have not yet contacted Tsui Mama. I haven’t dealt with them before. * Are they effective? *

Theoretically, there should be a way to negotiate a reasonable solution for everyone, but intermediaries are definitely necessary.

  • I can probably produce a note from a doctor regarding the surgery.

  • I can also promise to leave by a specific date.

  • My good furniture could add to the value of her apartment and might be a bargaining chip. Without an elevator and truck, it is challenging to sell it.

  • If she only has to tolerate me for an extra six months, and I pay her rent, the hassle of going through eviction might not be worth it to her.

Not paying the rent for longer than two months is a provocation to her that will cause me stress. I would prefer to stop paying rent two months before I actually leave, to recover the deposit, but not before then. (That already is not the proper way of doing things, but people get away with it.)

Neighbors now like me and have tried to intercede gently on my behalf before. There’s an old lady in the neighborhood that the landlord respects who I could talk to–she has authority due to her age. She’s not necessarily on my side, but I have been able to communicate with the landlord through her before.

FYI. I work at a university here, and my dissertation is for a university in the U.S.
Dorm rooms are shared rooms–I am 50 years old and don’t intend to share a dorm room with anyone.

I have lived here over 12 years. I own everything in my apartment, so moving will be a very time consuming process that disrupts my ability to write a dissertation.


#18

Perhaps offer her the furniture if she lets you stay a further 6 months before getting an intermediary involved? If it’s worth 100k she could well bite. I would.


#19

Why not just move and pay a moving company? You can find a new apartment in easily in a single weekend, sign a 6 months lease (these exist), and pay a mover to bring over your furniture. All of that can easily be done in a week, I don’t see how it affects your surgery, your work or school, or anything else. Landlord doesn’t want to renew. Get a new apartment. It’s really that simple…


#20

shoulda apple daily’d that one.