A man selling his brother’s house and evicting his family without notice is being backed online.
In a post to Reddit’s Am I the A******? (AITA) forum, user u/FollowingFit3032 explained that he owns multiple rental properties. His brother was struggling financially, so he agreed to rent him one of the properties—an older house in a popular part of town.
The lease agreement stated that FollowingFit3032 would rent the house at “breakeven point,” and in exchange, his brother agreed to maintain the property and yard.
However, the agreement quickly fell apart, with the brother not keeping up his end of the bargain. The siblings’ relationship deteriorated, with the poster selling the home just to end the feud.
‘He Called Me to Ask WTF’
FollowingFit3032’s brother has four children and claimed the house’s hot water tank couldn’t meet their needs. He asked the poster to replace the tank with a new one, but he refused to cover the costs, telling his brother that it’s not his responsibility.
His brother installed the water tank anyway, using the rent money to cover the costs.
“I reminded him of our agreement. He said he wasn’t making improvements to my property for free,” FollowingFit3032 said.
“I didn’t want to fight so I said that he was not allowed to make any further changes to the house without my explicit agreement.”
As a protest, his brother stopped doing any maintenance work on the house. Not long after the water tank incident, he asked FollowingFit3032 to replace the electrics, but the poster said no.
“I cannot afford that since I’m not making any money on the house,” he explained.
Angry, his brother started to pay his rent late. The poster tried to discuss the issue with his sibling, but to no avail.
Tired of his brother’s behavior, he sold the house to property developers and served his sibling an eviction notice.
“He called me to ask WTF,” FollowingFit3032 said.
“He said I should have offered him a chance to buy it. I said that he was having trouble making rent. How was he going to qualify for a mortgage.”
Since the fallout, the poster’s brother has been “bad-mouthing” him to their family.
“I feel bad for my sister-in-law and the kids but I’m not going to spend the rest of my life subsidizing his,” the poster said.
Reddit users agreed that FollowingFit3032 was in the right, with the post receiving over 20,000 upvotes and 4,500 comments.
Is Renting to a Family Member a Bad Idea?
Renting to a relative can seem like a good idea on paper, but family law attorney Athar A. Khan said it can quickly become problematic.
“The prospect of having a trusted person in your property, who might treat it with more care and respect than the average renter, can be appealing,” he told Newsweek.
“But the blurring of personal and professional boundaries can lead to complications.”
It can be more difficult to address issues, such as late payments or property damage, with a loved one due to your pre-existing relationship.
However, if you decide to go ahead, Khan recommends enlisting a property management service to handle aspects such as rent collection and repairs.
A formal rental agreement is also a must, and should outline the responsibilities and expectations of both parties.
‘Slap in the Face’
In a poll, users voted FollowingFit3032 “NTA” (“not the asshole”) in the situation.
“Why should you lose money to help him out?” said Timely-Ask-1327.
“He was taking advantage of you and you were losing money in the process,” wrote CandidNumber.
“Huge slap in the face,” agreed JamesPildis.
“He was a bad tenant; doesn’t matter that he’s family,” commented cat_on_the_windowsill.
While Sailor-Chibi said: “Your brother learned a valuable lesson.
“It’s a shame his wife and kids had to learn it too, but that’s what happens when you think you can push people as far as you want and face no consequences for it.”
Newsweek reached out to u/FollowingFit3032 for comment via Reddit. We couldn’t verify the details of the case.
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