Asked in Civil Rights, Real Estate Law and Small Claims for Michigan

Q: In Michigan, if a tennant damages a house, and it is sold as a loss, can they still be taken to court for the damages?

There is a lease to purchase contract stating tennant is responsible for all maintenance and repairs.

1 Lawyer Answer
Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi
  • Howell, MI
  • Licensed in Michigan

A: Without seeing the actual lease AND the inventory/checklist forms and determining if all the documents comply with all applicable Michigan landlord/tenant laws, it is impossible to say what (if anything) a tenant may be responsible for.

IN GENERAL provided you have properly dotted your i's and crossed your t's a tenant can be held responsible for any 'unreasonable' damage beyond normal wear and tear. The tenant CANNOT be held responsible for the total dimunition in value however, because that would include market variances etc which have nothing to do with the tenants actions.

Seek the help of a local landlord/tenant lawyer to know what can and cannot be charged, and whether or not you've already 'blown' the time limits under landlord tenant law (they are pretty tight!)

Good luck.

--This answer is offered for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney/client relationship. I am licensed to practice in Michigan only. Please seek competent local legal help if you feel you need legal advice!

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