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my cousin/roommate is crazy and is going to lock me out!!

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about a month and a half ago i moved in to a duplex with my 26 year old cousin. i am 22 and we are both female and we live in ohio. she is on the lease for the duplex but i am not. nothing is in my name but i have paid her all the money for rent and utilities on time. i pay for half of everything and she then gives it to the landlord. i moved in after she had been living there for about 3 weeks to help her out as she has no job and would not be able to afford it herself. but after about 2 weeks i realized she was unbearable to live with....she kept the air conditioning at 65 degrees so it was always freezing, she was rude to any guests i ever had over, not only did she never allow me to park in the garage but she always parked in front of the garage so i had to park at the neighbor's duplex. she was up all night with the tv blaring when i had to be up at 5:30am for work and one night she came into my room at 3:30am, 2 hours before i had to be up for work and woke me so she could use my phone to call her friend. when i told her no and that i didnt appreciate her waking me up in the middle of the night she went off on me. so i told her about 3 weeks ago that i would be moving out at the end of july since i already paid for all of july's rent. she was furious that i was moving out already but i was nice and tried to explain to her that we just didnt get along and it wasnt working out.


then last night we were figuring out what she owed me (my security deposit back, and the last month's rent that we had to pay with the first month's rent.) she told me that since shes leaving on vacation for 5 days her friend and her friends 2 kids are coming over to stay at our place. i told her that there is no way that is going to happen, i paid half the rent and i was not living with 3 strangers in a small duplex. she said too bad they are staying here while i am gone. she also made out this contract that i was supposed to sign saying she gave me all my money but she only gave me half the money and said she would pay me the rest later so i refused to sign the contract. she then proceeded to literally get right into my face and was screaming at me to sign the contract and was pushing me around, pinned me into a corner and elbowed me in the face. i then grabbed her by her hair and pulled as hard as i could to get her off of me. the whole time i was telling her to get away from me and get out of my face and that i wasnt going to fight her. i was trying to be very mature about everything...she then went into my room and knocked over my tv and ripped my cable box out of the tv and the wall. i just let it go and stayed away from her. when i got home from work today i gathered up my laundry to take to my parent's house to wash and when i walked out the door she yelled at me not to come back and that the locks would be changed by the time i got home.


so basically i would like to know my rights....what if i return home tonight and i cannot get in?? if i call the police will they force her to let me in?? or am i legally allowed to break in?? i paid for the entire month of july and there are still 8 days left in july. i am moving out next week when my parents can help me. doesnt she have to give me a 30 day eviction notice before she has a right to lock me out? also, is there anything i can do to keep her friend out of the duplex?? would the police force her to leave if i dont want her there? i would appreciate any help and knowledge about what i can do

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I'd take the half of the money she gave you, and move your stuff out now. Don't worry another minute about her. Just cut your losses, take what she gave you, and end it right now. She doesnt' have to do a single thing since you aren't on the lease and nothing is in your name. However, you still might want to check the laws in your area--even if you haven't signed the lease, if you have been living there I don't think she has the right to lock you out. And by all means, DON'T sign anything she gives you. When you go back, take a police officer with you, move out your stuff, and be gone. Take a friend or two in case all your stuff won't fit in your car or just to make the move-out go faster.


It's best to keep yourself safe and just get out than to try to fight her over money. You may need it but you may also never get it. Don't feel bad that she's got no job and no one living there while she's gone--that is NOT YOUR PROBLEM. She's obviously not hurting if she can take 5 days' vacation somewhere. Your safety and mental well-being are not worth any kind of money.


Oh, and when you move out, don't let her contact you again and don't call her either.

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It's not good that your name is not on the least form.


Did you pay the rent in checks? If you have copies of the checks, you could try to use that as proof that you do live there. Especially if you were sending the checks directly to the landlord, then he could confirm that you had been paying rent for your room.

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