Do not pay him any more rent. If he chooses to evict you, it has to be seen before a judge before the eviction will be finalized. You will be able to tell the judge why you are withholding rent, and the judge will not finalize the eviction due to the foreclosure and non-refund of deposits. The judge will give you an adequate amount of time to leave the property if you request it. It takes about three months for the whole eviction process to get to the court phase anyways, so I doubt your landlord is going to have any leeway to do so since he will not be the property owner in two months.
Make all future contact with him in writing. Request what his plans are concerning your deposit. State in your letters to him what he said about not giving you your deposit back, and your concern for that. Ask for his response in writing. Make copies of what you send him, and send it by certified mail(keep the receipt), and also by email if possible. Do not speak to him about the subject in person any longer. I cannot stress enough how much it matters to have your communication with him be in writing from now on.
Here is how the eviction process works:
1.Landlord must in writing, give you either a 30 days notice, or a 72 hour quit notice for non-payment of rent.
2. You ignore the written notice and stay there.
3. Landlord must file with the court a legal eviction proceeding, and have the county sheriff hand-deliver it to you. What the sheriff will give you is a paper that states when your court date is. The court date can be anywhere from two weeks to two months later, depending on how busy the court is. You still get to remain at the residence.
3. Court. You go before a judge with the landlord and present your case. You explain why you are withholding rent and when you think you will moved from the premises. Usually, you will be granted the time to leave, with the stipulation that if you are still there by your move out date, the landlord can then have the eviction finalized. If you are out by the agreed upon date that you gave the judge in court, there will be no eviction on your record because it was not finalized. Finalizing the eviction requires refiling with the court, and upon refiling the sheriff will come to the property in 30 days to physically remove you. If the sheriff comes out and you are not there to physically remove, the eviction will not hold on your record.
Your landlord sounds awful. I am battling my landlord too, that is why I am so savvy to the rental laws right now. I don't think your landlord would make a good rental reference, hearing his practices on your deposit. You would be better off using me for a rental reference:)
(Washington Law Help-Helping Low-income People Find Solutions to Civil Legal Problems)
(link to the following pdf)
New Protections for Tenants Whose Landlords Go Through Foreclosure
On May 20, 2009, President Obama signed a new law providing additional protections for tenants living in properties that have been foreclosed. This law is effective now.
If you’re a tenant and your landlord went through foreclosure, be aware: Under the new law, anyone who purchases the property after foreclosure must provide you with the following:
• 90 days notice prior to eviction; or,
• if you have a lease, the right to stay until the end of your lease term, unless the purchaser sells the property to someone else who will use the property as their residence.
This law does NOT apply to you if you’re the mortgagor or a member of the mortgagor’s family, or if your tenancy is subsidized.
If you have a Section 8 voucher and your rental was foreclosed, anyone who purchases the property can’t evict you unless the purchaser plans to use the rental for their residence and has given you 90 days’ notice. Otherwise, the purchaser becomes your new landlord fur the duration of your lease term.
This publication provides general information concerning your rights and responsibilities. It is not intended as a substitute for specific legal advice. This information is current as of the date of its printing, June 2009.
(Permission for copying and distribution granted to the Alliance for Equal Justice and to
individuals for non-commercial purposes only)
Hope this helps:) Good luck!