The full eviction process takes weeks, so he can start, but not finish the eviction process against you in a matter of days. You will be able to keep physical possession until the eviction process is complete. However, since your lease has terminated on the expiration of the 30 day notice, you are in unlawful detainer, basically a trespasser, which may allow him to collect damages against you. Consult with a local real estate attorney.
Intermittent leaks and floods are difficult to detect. A leaky roof would have visible damage. I doubt you could prove your case in court. Plus the statute of limitations for fraud in most states is 3 years, which you may be passed. Consult with a local real estate attorney.
No, I met some guys at a foreclosure auction that routinely contacted homeowners before the auction sale. I'm sure a filed Notice of Sale generates lots of junk mail and other contacts by real estate investors. Chances are they have already been contacted.
If the property is out of probate, presumably title is in your name. Now, you can just sell it like a regular house. I would start by hiring a realtor. The realtor will price the house at a discount due to the defects, but you should have interest from real estate investors/developers. You should also bring the taxes current right away to avoid losing the house at a tax auction. If title is not in your name, you need to back to probate court and get that done. Any liens will be paid in escrow at the time of sale when they do a title search. However, you can do your own title search by going online to a title company and buying one.
If the contract states you made the payments, that is your proof.
As a landlord, I usually ask for $500 deposit per each large pet (ie cat or dog). A bigger deposit might not entice a landlord since they are most likely worried about increased wear and tear, especially for a large indoor dog. This kind of damage can't be deducted from a deposit.
It could be your description:http://www.zillow.com/blog/15-words-that-add-value-171182/
Find a realtor who will represent you, and offer them 1%/2% split on his commission.
Usually one month's rent.