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LegalGround >> Legal issues with a renter


3/30/09 12:23 PM
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disbeliever
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I am in need of advice. My situation is not the typical forclosure issue.

I have owned my home (my first) since april of 05. It is a townhome in a neighborhood in Abingdon, MD. It is close to a city called edgewood, which is ghetto and crime ridden.

When the housing crash came, the prices of homes (mine was appraised for 186K in the last 6 months) dropped alot allowing any idiot to buy. In this case, the home to my immidiate right was rented out to a trash family with a yappy small dog. When they first moved in it was spring last year, and they would leave their windows open all day, and the dog is the type of dog that will bark at the air, non stop. It would back for 6-7 hours NON stop. Now most people work, yes, however my wife is a stay at home mom with our 17 month old son, and the barking was disturbing my son. After research and contacting the sherrifs, I found dog nussiance (sp) laws applied at any hour of the day.

I approached the husband renting and said their dog barks non stop all day and its disturbing us. His intial response was "its my wifes dog, I dont even like it anyway ill handle it". The barking stopped for a few weeks, because he says they lock it in the basement.

Fast forward a few months, the dog is now being put outside at 630am to bark while the wife gets ready for work. And again at 10-11pm. The dog will bark at nothing for 10-20min at a time. The law does not state any set time frame for barking, but rather claims "any nussiance". After being woken up a few times, i called animal control. They came and left a notice. It stopped for a few days, then continued.

My wife and us were on vacation one weekend, when we returned our other neighbors who watched out own dog for us said he made smart comments to her about us calling animal control, and how he wants me to "clean up my unfinished garden". For right or wrong I went over and knocked. And calmly said "we need to workthis out, you dont like me and i dont like you". he proceeded to scream, cuss, yell and ultimatly slam the door in my face. I called his landlord and told him what was going on.

I contacted the goverment here, the sherrifs and animal control to find out what to do next. They told me to document everything, video or audio helps etc. So again last week at 630 am they put the dog outside barking for 10min waking us all up, and a night last week at 145am he puts it outside. I came home with my son yesterday, and hear the dog barking. I go inside and wait 29min and its still barking. I go outback and video record it. The man sees me and comes out yelling, tells me to "come on his property and hell kick my ass", thn says to come out front.

I go out front and he claims I am harrassing him and threatening him, and hes calling the police. The police show up. But before they do, he comes out and sarcastically says "oh please dont hurt me i feel to scared for my family and myself. How does that sound?" and laughs. I told him to keep trying, he said he will. The cops come and he tells them i am harrassing his and his family, and that a dog will bark and nothing he can do about it. And that i am threatening him. I asked the cops how threatening court is threatening his verbally or physically? They told him a dog will bark, thats what tey do, but its the owners job to be responsible and bring it in when it does. So the renter basically asked them how he can pursue this threatening harrassment issue with the courts, even though i have done neither. I qouted the poeple on the goverment, animal control and the sherrifs i had spoken to regarding this and what the laws were. The cops did nothing, and did not comment to me at all about harrassment or threatening him. So I am guessing they did not buy it?

I am sure this guy will pursue this, so I have set up mediation with the goverment regarding his dog, in hopes of striking first. Its rediculous that some trash renter can get away with this when he does not even own the home. He complained to the cops that I had a rolle dup dirty diaper on my porche from when i changed my son that i had not yet throw into the trash can. He said he does not like being on his property and seeing that. I said its "not your property you rent it".

So does this renter who is lying have any ground to stand on? I have dates and times of their dog barking at innapropriate times. names of people I have talked to. etc


Thanks guys
3/30/09 8:30 PM
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jbapk
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Uh, did you record the guy admitting his was filing a false complaint and threatening you?
3/31/09 9:14 AM
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disbeliever
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Edited: 03/31/09 9:14 AM
Member Since: 9/27/03
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I did not The video cut out just as he said "come on my property". However I now am carrying a dictation device with me, because I am sure he will say something smart at some point.Anything else?
3/31/09 6:20 PM
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BarkLikeADog
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Edited: 03/31/09 6:27 PM
Member Since: 10/11/05
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Continue to document everything; it's the only thing you can do. This is probably going to continue to escalate into something that's not really worth the hassle. Basically you have to wait it out until they fuck up enough that you can get rid of them. Cops generally don't care much for intervening in petty BS like this & there's not a whole lot they can do; best case scenario is that you succeed in getting the city to take away their dog & then you have extremely hostile neighbors who would like nothing better than to see you dead. Doesn't really sound like a good long term plan.

If this ever happens to you again, make nice nice right from the get go & offer to take care of the dog when they're gone. Not the cheapest solution but bottom line the dog is unhappy & not treated right nor trained correctly & nothing the government/court system does is ever going to fix that.

PS don't ever ever ever raise your level beyond polite resolution-seeking. You don't want the judge seeing THEIR video of you being an ass, should it come to that.
4/1/09 9:26 AM
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disbeliever
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Well, my wife and I have decided to get out of this house ASAP. I hate coming home from work everyday. The problem is while I have great credit, you now require a 3.5% downpayment for homes since this mess started. I am going to finish some repairs to the house, and list it myself and see what happens.

Since the incident sunday, they have stayed in their homes and I have not heard one peep from the dog, at any time of the day. They are probably trying to say "see our dog doesnt bark". I have dates and times and duration for the last month documented though. Sigh
4/2/09 2:39 AM
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BarkLikeADog
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^^Just to overstate the obvious, that was practical advice, not predicated on legal advice.
4/2/09 7:25 PM
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PittWrestler
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^^^ awesome name for this thread
4/3/09 10:19 AM
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StephenL
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go after the deep pocketed landlord.

help him draft his contract so that dogs and nuisance neighbors will not be allowed.
4/3/09 3:08 PM
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disbeliever
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StephenL - go after the deep pocketed landlord.

help him draft his contract so that dogs and nuisance neighbors will not be allowed.


How does that help me now?
4/6/09 7:26 PM
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Dcastillo
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Man, I fucking hate dogs like that.

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