Eviction is never truly a surprise

To the editor:

I have read over the past several weeks stories about people being evicted from their homes either through foreclosure or because their landlord doesn’t own the house anymore. It all sounds if they were surprised by the whole thing.

As a real estate agent, I have the unfortunate job of knocking on the doors of occupants to inform them that they no longer have a legal right to occupy the property. Although it’s a terrible situation many find themselves in, the owners who still occupy the property should not act surprised and should have planned for it.

It could take six to eight months of nonpayment on a mortgage before a foreclosure is final, and the owner has a three-day notice to vacate the premises. It usually takes three to five months of nonpayment before a lender would file a notice of default, which is the first legal step in the foreclosure process.

Once that’s filed, the owner has 90 days, plus 21 days, to cure the default. So when you add up all the time the owner is not paying his mortgage and is living in his house payment-free, it’s more than half a year. You would think that he would have time to prepare himself and his family to make different living arrangements. And in most cases, he could get an extra 30 days, plus some cash from the lender to help him make the transition once the house is actually foreclosed.

The people who are really getting screwed are the tenants who have no clue that the landlord has taken their monthly rent but not paid the mortgage on the house they were renting. In many cases, if they rented directly from the owner, they would have lost their security deposit, too. Although in most cases the tenants may get 30 days, and sometimes more plus a small about of money to offset their move, no one is being evicted who has not been notified in advance in order to make other living arrangements.

Neil Schwartz

LAS VEGAS

Wanting it both ways

To the editor:

The article in Sunday’s newspaper regarding Clark County Sheriff Doug Gillespie contained a reference to his proposal that it would be in the best interests of all police officers if they were required to wear bulletproof vests, in spite of the fact that the vast majority wear them anyway. It was revealing, as reported, that officers did not want to be told they had to wear them, and the sheriff dropped the suggestion.

A current proposal in the Legislature supported by police lobbyists would make it a primary offense — instead of a secondary offense — not to wear a seat belt, in spite of the fact that most Nevada automobile drivers (reportedly 92 percent) already use them.

Am I missing something?

Dick Allesee

BOULDER CITY

No bailout coming

To the editor:

I would like to congratulate Geoff Schumacher on his March 6 column, “Las Vegas mythbusting.” He got this one right.

There is additional information to support his conclusion that the thought of Las Vegas exceptionalism is gone.

Basically, the Las Vegas monopoly is gone.

The high-end gambler is slowed down by the current world financial distress, but additionally, the Far Eastern gamblers now have their own places to go to and do not have to come here anymore. In fact, the Las Vegas casino operators are building nice resorts in Macau, just like Las Vegas.

The low-end gamblers have their own local, very good casinos.

Not only will the Strip casinos have trouble cutting costs because of their high debts, their labor costs are unusually high. They will face great resistance to get those lowered.

In a sense, this looks like Detroit’s auto industry problem — except there will be no bailout by the federal government.

Dirk Dahlgren

LAS VEGAS

Landlord costs

To the editor:

I was a former landlord in the Las Vegas area, and I now live in the Reno area. Assembly Bill 189, which would give renters a longer period of nonpayment before they could be evicted, is bad.

Until you are a landlord, you could never know what we go through with tenants. Nevada, I hate to say, is a very transient state. People come and go, and most people leave because they have a problem with our No. 1 industry: gaming.

Yes, we may have one of the shortest time frames for evictions over nonpayment, but that is because renters will be long gone with their rent money owed by the time they’re evicted. Plus the tenants will be living in another state where we can not subpoena them. Essentially, they stole our money.

In turn, the people who pay their bills on time pay more, through higher rents, because the landlord has to recoup costs.

Rent in Nevada is among the cheapest in the Western states. Even with gaming, do Nevadans really want the rents they pay in California? No on AB189!

Jay Fisher

FERNLEY

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