How do I tell my mom's landlord that I'm moving her stuff out by the end of the month?


My mom is in a nursing home, and she can no longer afford her rent. We thought that she would be going home at the end of September but it looks like she will not be able to do that because she didn't progress far enough in therapy.

So I have to break her lease and have her stuff moved out by the end of the month. I have a moving company scheduled for the 24th of September and I'm going to find a storage unit today. My mom can't afford her rent anymore because she is on Medicaid and I am required to give all but $60 of her social security check to the nursing home.

What is the best way to tell a landlord this? They couldn't sue my mom even if they wanted to because she's judgement-free. When I signed the lease I had no idea she would go into a nursing home so quickly. There is about 9 or 10 months remaining on the lease.



In my experience once they move into a NH there is going to be all sorts of past dues that crop up from their old life. And they end up defaulting on all if they go onto Medicaid as all they have for extra $ is the $50 or $60 or whatever your state does for personal needs allowance $.

Dealing with her apt lease won’t be the only thing.....

to make this more manageable (& less stressful) for you as dpoa, I have a suggestion for you to do this coming week...... go and open a mail box that becomes mom’s new address. UPS stores do these but what might be better is an independent pack&ship type of store. If you have a college or university in your town there will one nearby the school. Why? Cause they will be smaller & get to know you and will call you if something interesting comes in or if box gets too full. You (not mom) have to open the box as they need an ID to do this due to postal regulations but you have it in your name and mom’s name as secondary. You do a change of address for everything mom to this. Like the storage unit you are renting for her, comprende? You go twice a mo., pick up mail and deal with it. Her stuff doesn’t get quite so commingled with you, your name, your address.

Regarding the movers, if they can get to her apt without needing a single elevator or single entrance or parking spaces to be blocked for the couple of hours of the move, the office may not need to be notified. But if that’s not the case, you will have to deal with management ahead of the move as residents cannot be inconvenienced by the movers. If mom is current on her rent, they can’t keep you from moving stuff. But expect for you to get a copy of the lease and bill for October, that management expects you to sign right then. Sign as dpoa for your mom and get a copy of the document or shoot a Foto of each page with your phone. So on the 25th - the day after the movers come - you mail the keys to the apt management co along with a letter from your mom that she has had to move due to her health. The new mail box is her address on the letter. And you mail at the Post Office all this in a padded envelope sent certified mail with the return registered card (the green postcard) to apt management. Duo runs maybe $8.00 and it verifies they got it. Unfortunately the UPS and independent mailing shops cannot do certified mail so you have to go to the post office. They will turn it over for collections but if she’s on Medicaid & only getting SS, she’s judgement proof. Collections letters go to the mail box so it’s less daily drama for you. First year is the worst as there will be copays or debts you had no idea existed.

Please give some thought as to that storage unit. If it’s not in a climate controlled unit with management that actually regularly cleans hallways and monitors for pests, the stuff is going to degrade, get musty or with mold. Even if you packed stuff carefully, the unit next door may not have and their roaches & rodents & mold will move to yours. Plus it’s $ every month.
Helpful Answer (6)
Reply to igloo572

You need to talk to the landlord.
Often due to health reasons they may be more understanding.
If you get a medical note stating that she can not safely live there any longer that might have more "weight" than saying she can not afford the rent. Stress the safety aspect since it might be an argument if something happened to Mom if you moved her back home for the duration of the lease if they will not let you out of the lease.
Since you signed the lease and not your Mother you are responsible not her. So in theory they could come after you for the rest of the rent. Often they will charge you rent until the unit is leased. If you find someone that is acceptable or they do it does not matter.
If your Mother had signed the lease it might be a different answer.
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Reply to Grandma1954

Try talking to them and explain your situation. Documentation from her doctor helps prove your case. Since Alzheimer's disease is rapidly rising most people understand the situation, and the landlord may agree to terminate the contract -- without having to resort filing complaints against the landlord for elder abuse and exploitation. She can't help getting sick. In fact, chances are they will simply agree to terminate the contract.
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Reply to cetude
waterfalls Sep 17, 2018
I agree. I'm sure the landlord will cooperate. He or she will not want to make an issue out of it knowing its her mom who needs help. Will not want to make a mess of things.
I would notify the Landlord immediately!! They may have someone interested in renting her place and forgive the charge for breaking the lease. A notice from the Dr. stating your mother cannot return and be on her own should help them understand.
Your mothers Mail should come to your address. My mother’s checking account was in both our names and her POA was in my name as well as my brothers names just in case something happened to me. Hope she also has a Living Will and you have a copy of it.
Hope everything goes smoothly for you.
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Reply to ConnieMH71

Generally you will need to ask for the elevator to be made available for the move so
I think you should look for as amicable a way to do this as is possible and soon. Write it out formally and then if possible deliver it personally to the landlord or super - explain the situation and let them know you are regretful that she is no longer able to come home, I don't think it is prudent to emphasize that they are out of luck trying to collect any money. (this is why tenants are asked to pay first and last up front, unless there is a glut of apartments the landlord will probably be able to re rent without a financial loss and will hopefully not push too hard to collect)

edit Oh wait, YOU signed the lease? I hope you signed as mom's POA?
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Reply to cwillie

aj, look over that lease for ‘out’ provisions - this is a totally understandable reason, no fault or intent on your part. There’s no reason to think they’ll require any more than, say, surrendering your deposit (try even asking for all or some of that back!). If you have access to a lawyer or anyone good with legal papers, have them look at the lease with you first.

Leases and other legal papers are focused on protecting entities from intended, harmful actions, not as much on unforeseen circumstances. You have a lot to handle and you’re doing great. :) Good luck.
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Reply to Zdarov

Tell the landlord directly. He cannot stop you from taking care of your mom. If he wants to make a legal issue out of it, your city or state will step in to protect your mom. Elder care is serious and protections are in place for them. Seek legal advice and know your rights. Know what to say before you tell the landlord. Do not be fearful. You have to do what's right for your mom. Has the relationship with the landlord been good?
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Reply to waterfalls

Can you have an attorney review the lease to see if there is a provision that allows an out?
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Reply to Sunnygirl1

If you are in New York State there are protections for elderly to have break a lease to move into a higher level of care. This is how my Mom got out of her IL apartment.

Perhaps there’s a similar law in your state.
(see starting on page 14.)
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Reply to rocketjcat
athena1234 Sep 17, 2018
I broke my lease in New York City to come home to Virginia...with Glenwood
and I had to pay 4000.00...….to break the lease on a 25,000 contract in Harlem...I did not know about the law for seniors I was 62 years old..and both Mother and Father were being taken care of by my brother who quit his I was not informed at that time.,..maybe I should try to get my money
back...I paid out 10,000 just to enter into the contract so is this illegal..meaning my credit was 560 at the time..I paid a insurance company
4000 to hold in escroe..and 4000 to glenwood prior to siging the lease.
Tell them there is NO MORE MONEY to pay them & that you are moving her stuff out so that they can prepare it for new people so that they [landlord] can continue to receive an income - phrase it all that you are doing them a favour by letting them be able to lease it sooner than later
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Reply to moecam

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