Facing foreclosure? Think before renting out home

Future-Proof: Navigate Threats, Seize Opportunities at ICNY 2018 | Jan 22-26 at the Marriott Marquis, Times Square, New York

Q: Do you feel it is ethical for a landlord to sign a one-year lease when he knows the property may be foreclosed? For that matter, what about signing a month-to-month rental agreement? True, the landlord can always terminate a month-to-month with notice, but if the tenant liked the place and had decided to stay for a while, having the bank kick him out would be very disruptive and expensive. --John W. A: As you no doubt know, anybody can be a landlord. All you need is a piece of residential property and the determination to rent it out. Some cities, particularly those with rent control, require landlords to register their rental units, and in some cases, the units need to pass a physical inspection. But even in these situations, the moral character of the landlord is not an issue. Unlike doctors, lawyers, brokers and other professionals, landlords aren't legally required to pass a licensing exam; they aren't bound by a code of ethical conduct; and no state or quasi-state a...