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Lease Agreement Questions

If My Landlord Dies and a New Owner Takes Over, Is My Lease Terminated?

In most cases, and depending upon the language used in the lease, the death of the lessor would not cause the lease to be terminated. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  September 18th, 2013

Must My Landlord Pay Interest on My Security Deposit When the Term Ends?

There is no interest due to the tenant on a security deposit held by landlord during the term of a lease — unless such a line item has been specified within the lease agreement and agreed to by the signature of both parties.

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  May 1st, 2013

Is a Lease Agreement Enforceable if No Rent Payment is Made Due?

To have an enforceable contract, consideration must be exchanged by the parties; consideration usually takes the form of money, even $1.

Other things could act as consideration, too. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  February 28th, 2013

If a Management Company is Fired by a Landlord and My Lease is with the Management Company, is the Lease Terminated?

If a lease is signed with a management company, and if the management company no longer has authority to manage the property, an argument could be made that the lease is no longer effective. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  February 5th, 2013

Can Our Landlord Make the Apartment Non-Smoking During the Middle of the Lease?

Some leases contain language allowing the option for the landlord to alter certain terms during the lease with proper notice.

The lease document itself must be reviewed carefully for the existence of such language. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  December 24th, 2012

If I Have Roommates and One is Not Paying His Part of the Rent, Can I Get Him Off the Lease?

Usually, a lease contract is written with ‘joint and several’ responsibility for the payment of the rent. That means each tenant is responsible for the full amount of the rent due, not just his or her ‘part’. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  October 31st, 2012

How Do We Handle Our Landlord When My Military Husband Has Been Assigned to a Different Base?

Military personnel and their family members are covered under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) in dealing with civilian apartment and home leases. Section 305 provides: [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  September 4th, 2012

If I Get Divorced, Can I Tell the Landlord I Am Leaving and Make My Ex-Spouse Responsible for the Rent?

Until such time as the landlord agrees to release a tenant from liability under the terms of a lease, the tenants listed in the lease are obligated together to abide by those terms (i.e. pay the rent).

Unilateral pronouncements by a tenant delivered to a landlord will usually not result in a termination of liability for that tenant. [ Read More... →]

Divorce Questions · Lease Agreement Questions  ·  August 22nd, 2012

Is My Apartment Lease Valid if the Landlord Never Signed It?

In most states, the general rule is that any agreement regarding or pertaining to an interest in real property must be in writing and signed by the parties.

However, courts will often look to the conduct of the parties to see if there is a definitive agreement reached, even if the document in question has not been signed. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  May 3rd, 2012

Can Our Landlord Force Us to Leave Before the End of the Rental Term?

You must carefully read the details of your Lease Agreement, as that document will spell out the rights and responsibilities of both the Landlord and the Tenant. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  March 13th, 2012

Can a Landlord Add Additional Late Fees After Filing a Court Case for a Lease Dispute?

Required fees stipulated in any contract — including a Lease Agreement — do not stop accruing simply because a court case is filed. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  February 8th, 2012

Is a Lease Agreement Signed for a Lesser Amount than Discussed Binding?

Most often, the terms used in a written contract are binding on the parties.

And most times, the terms of that written contract will control the obligations of the parties, regardless of what one party or the other ‘meant.’ [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions · Pro Se Law and Self Representation Questions  ·  January 30th, 2012

If My Employer Forces Me to Move to Another City, Can I Demand a Return of My Security Deposit From My Landlord?

Typically, only the requirements of military duty compels a landlord to return a security deposit to a person breaking a residential lease. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  December 13th, 2011

Is a Lease Agreement with Damage Responsibility to the Tenant for Non-Working Fire Alarms Standard?

A Lease Agreement is a contract that is open to negotiation between the landlord and tenant. The only ‘standards’ in a Lease Agreement are those required by local and state governments. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  November 8th, 2011

Can I Provide a Tenant a Lease Agreement that Provides for Immediate Eviction if Terms are Not Followed?

A Lease Agreement can be drafted to provide for the termination of a tenancy upon the happening of a given event. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  October 26th, 2011

Can a Landlord Use Photocopies of a Lease to Enforce the Lease Terms?

Whether or not a referenced lease contract is an original document or a photocopy of the original is irrelevant — so long as the photocopy is an unaltered duplicate of the original document.

The ‘contract’ is the document agreed upon and signed by all parties, not the format of the paperwork. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions · Pro Se Law and Self Representation Questions  ·  April 5th, 2011

Can a Landlord Change the Terms of a New Lease After the Document Has Been Signed?

In this case, the person posing the question states that his landlord left with a newly signed lease to make copies, but returned later with a lease that contained different terms. He claims the landlord added new terms and rules to the document, but the landlord replied that the terms and rules were in place and that the signer simply didn’t read the document.

Of course the terms of a contract cannot be changed legally after signatures are provided.

And of course it is the responsibility of the persons signing the contract to read and fully understand the terms of the contract in front of them.

A simple tactic can keep this type of situation from turning into a case of ‘he said/she said’ or having to prove a contract’s terms later. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  February 24th, 2011

Can My Friend’s Girlfriend Live in Our Shared Rental House Without Splitting the Rent Three Ways?

Most lease agreement documents permit only the signators of the lease to be permanent residents of a leased property. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  October 11th, 2010

Can My Landlord Fill In Blank Spaces On Our Apartment Lease After the Fact?

A contract should never be signed by either party without the full terms of the contract written into place. By signing a document with open “fill in the blank” spaces, you leave yourself open to exactly such a situation where the details of the contract are entered after-the-fact.

(In fact, when a person is signing a contract, he or she should ‘strike out’ — i.e. put a line through — any blank spaces left on the document, to discourage changes to the terms after the fact.) [ Read More... →]

General Questions · Lease Agreement Questions  ·  July 1st, 2010

Can I Evict My Tenant for Changing the Locks on the Apartment Leased from Me?

A landlord can enforce the terms contained within the signed lease.

If a condition of the lease has been violated by the tenant’s actions, then a landlord can proceed against the tenant under the terms stated explicitly within the lease. [ Read More... →]

Lease Agreement Questions  ·  March 23rd, 2010