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superplum
Aug 2, 2006, 06:40 PM
I live in Los Angeles California. I've lived in my apartment for over 1 year after signing a 12 month lease. Now that the 12 months on the lease are over, my landlord wants me to sign a new 12 month lease.

I don't want to sign another 12 month lease. I may go to school in a few months and I'd like to go month to month. I know she can raise the rent, but I'll accept that for the flexibility of leaving when I need to without breaking a lease.

But my landlord says I have to sign a new lease or she'll kick me out. She says I I live there "at her discretion". Is it legal for her to make me sign another 12 month lease, or can I tell her she can't make me, and go month to month?

CaptainForest
Aug 2, 2006, 06:43 PM
She can NOT force you to sign a new 12 month.

However, if you will not, she can evict you (by giving you 30 days notice). Because, what you are on now is a month to month.

superplum
Aug 2, 2006, 07:02 PM
Thank you CaptainForest!

Is there an actual LAW that says I don't have to sign another lease, or is it just something that's understood? If there's a law, I want to be able to show it to my landlord, so she'll leave me alone!

If she wants to evict me, fine. I'd rather live somewhere else for a few months and avoid risking my credit or security deposit...

CaptainForest
Aug 2, 2006, 07:33 PM
I think you are looking at it wrong. Why should you prove anything?

If she says that LAW is on her side and says you MUST sign a new 12 month lease, ask HER to prove it to you.

She will not be able to.

The law does NOT force anyone to sign a 12 month lease.

The only thing the LAW says is that in the absence of a contract, you will be on a month to month lease.

brooks
Aug 2, 2006, 08:23 PM
I have not researched CA laws, but in most States, you may be considered a holdover tenant. You may be required to either vacate or sign a yearly lease. If you decide to stay, your landlord can require that you pay twice the amount of rent (Or whatever the State allows) as a holdover tenant. Failure to pay would be an eviction and ruined credit. Stay on the safe side and move before your lease ends.

LisaB4657
Aug 2, 2006, 08:57 PM
In California the tenant becomes a month-to-month tenant if the landlord continues to accept rent after the written lease expires. There is no "holdover rent" unless the written lease requires it.

Superplum, there is no law that requires you to sign a new 12-month lease. But by the same token there is no law that requires your landlord to accept you as a month-to-month tenant. She can give you a 30 day notice terminating your tenancy and if you still don't move after the 30 days then she can have you evicted. If you can't work something out with her then I suggest that you start looking for a new place.

brooks
Aug 3, 2006, 11:33 AM
Lisa: it would stand to reason that the landlord would notify the tenant that the lease has ended.

HOLDING OVER
When you have a lease for one year or some other fixed term, you must move out when the lease is up. If you continue to stay after the lease ends, your landlord can consider you to be a holdover tenant and your landlord will get to decide whether your lease is extended on a month to month basis OR if you automatically renewed your lease by virtue of the fact that you did not get out when the original lease ended. If your original lease were for a full year, staying one day after the lease ended could automatically renew you for another year -- but only if that's what the landlord chooses.
A landlord can also sue to evict a holdover tenant and charge you double the amount of the rent or any other amount stated in the lease for the period you continued living in the apartment or house after your lease ended.
http://www.tenantunion.uiuc.edu/hb1.html




If a tenant fails to vacate leased premise at the end of the lease term, the tenant may become liable for double rent for the period of holdover if the holdover is deemed to be willful. The tenant can also be evicted.
http://www.illinoislawyerfinder.com/publicinfo/landlord.html

§ 5515. Landlord's remedies relating to holdover tenants.
(a) Except as is otherwise provided in this Code, whenever either party to a rental agreement rightfully elects to terminate, the duties of each party under the rental agreement shall cease.
(b) Whenever the term of the rental agreement expires, as provided herein or by the exercise by the landlord of a right to terminate given the landlord under any section of this Code, if the tenant continues in possession of the premises after the date of termination without the landlord's consent, such tenant shall pay to the landlord a sum not to exceed double the monthly rental under the previous agreement, computed and pro-rated on a daily basis, for each day the tenant remains in possession for any period. In addition, the holdover tenant shall be responsible for any further losses incurred by the landlord as determined by a proceeding before any court of competent jurisdiction. (70 Del. Laws, c. 513, § 3
§ 5516. Retaliatory acts prohibited

Incomplete list of double rent holdover states.

Illinois, Delaware, Hawaii, Missouri, Wisconsin, Iowa, New Mexico, Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Mississippi, Wyomming, Arkansas.

LisaB4657
Aug 3, 2006, 01:53 PM
Lisa: it would stand to reason that the landlord would notify the tenant that the lease has ended.

It might stand to reason but it's amazing how often we see here that the landlord did not do so.


HOLDING OVER
When you have a lease for one year or some other fixed term, you must move out when the lease is up. If you continue to stay after the lease ends, your landlord can consider you to be a holdover tenant and your landlord will get to decide whether your lease is extended on a month to month basis OR if you automatically renewed your lease by virtue of the fact that you did not get out when the original lease ended. If your original lease were for a full year, staying one day after the lease ended could automatically renew you for another year -- but only if that's what the landlord chooses.
A landlord can also sue to evict a holdover tenant and charge you double the amount of the rent or any other amount stated in the lease for the period you continued living in the apartment or house after your lease ended.
http://www.tenantunion.uiuc.edu/hb1.html


Strange. The language that I just read at this URL was slightly different. It says: "When you have a lease for one year or some other fixed term, you must move out when the lease is up. If you continue to stay after the lease ends, do not assume that you have a month to month tenancy. In some circumstances, [emph. Add] you will be a holdover tenant and your landlord will get to decide whether your lease is extended on a month to month basis OR if your holding over renewed your lease for another fixed term. If you had a one year lease, the landlord could consider your holding over to mean that you have renewed for another full year." If you'll notice, according to this language the tenant becomes a holdover tenant "in some circumstances". Unfortunately this site doesn't list those circumstances and I was unable to find anything regarding holdovers in the Illinois statutes. So I must assume that this happens pursuant to case law.


5515. Landlord's remedies relating to holdover tenants.
(a) Except as is otherwise provided in this Code, whenever either party to a rental agreement rightfully elects to terminate, the duties of each party under the rental agreement shall cease.
(b) Whenever the term of the rental agreement expires, as provided herein or by the exercise by the landlord of a right to terminate given the landlord under any section of this Code, if the tenant continues in possession of the premises after the date of termination without the landlord's consent, such tenant shall pay to the landlord a sum not to exceed double the monthly rental under the previous agreement, computed and pro-rated on a daily basis, for each day the tenant remains in possession for any period. In addition, the holdover tenant shall be responsible for any further losses incurred by the landlord as determined by a proceeding before any court of competent jurisdiction. (70 Del. Laws, c. 513, 3
5516. Retaliatory acts prohibited


Please note that a tenant in Delaware does not become a holdover unless they continue to remain in the premises without the landlord's consent.


Incomplete list of double rent holdover states.

Illinois, Delaware, Hawaii, Missouri, Wisconsin, Iowa, New Mexico, Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Mississippi, Wyomming, Arkansas.

I don't dispute that these states may require double rent from holdover tenants. However it is the definition of a holdover tenant that varies considerably. For example, in Missouri a tenant is not a holdover unless they remain after the landlord has made a written demand and given notice that the tenant is to vacate the premises. (Sec. 441.080). Sec. 704.27 of the Wisconsin statutes provides essentially the same information--the tenant becomes a holdover only after written demand and notice from the landlord. The states which have adopted the Uniform Residential Landlord and Tenant Law state that the tenant becomes a holdover tenant if they remain without the landlord's consent.

The foregoing examples merely make it evident that there is no uniformity among state laws with regard to this issue and a blanket statement that the original poster may become liable for double rent is alarmist and unnecessary, particularly since the specific information for California is available online.

brooks
Aug 3, 2006, 06:46 PM
The foregoing examples merely make it evident that there is no uniformity among state laws with regard to this issue

True, and all the more reason why the use of the word "MAY" was appropriate.

Sorry Lisa, but we seem to disagree once again. I don’t think is this case the word MAY should be considered unnecessarily alarming. Since she is a resident of CA and we have no knowledge of the wording in the lease, and if true that CA Tenant laws allow recovery of double rent in holdover cases(should there be a clause in the lease), then the possibility of the LL applying holdover fees should be considered and not dismissed. It is always best to act when you are aware of the possible risks.

joanie1966
Dec 5, 2010, 08:40 AM
My year to year lease just ended on Nov. 1st of this year and I went to a month to month with agreement with the landlord and he also sent a letter stating that we were on a month to month until Jan 31st of 2011. But the interesting part is I talk to attorney in regards to the year's lease we had and that is in writing those terms that we org. agreed to stays with the month to month. Now we have a concern with our cats, we have two of them and in the org. lease it states we can have cats. Now the other day I received a notice to vacate which is dated the 2nd of Dec. and the notice reads that because I called the police and my neighbor called the police I have to move. This letter basically states that unless I get rid of my cats I have to move. Then the letter states incorrectly that my cat was in my garage which is incorrect. Then the landlord goes on even if I decided to stay I would have to have all of my house professionally cleaned from the carpet to the floors in the kitchen and the laundry room and the furnace and the vents when this was never done. I think I have a strong case of discrimination because in the first sentence of the letter it clearly states after reviewing the police report he has come to a decision. Then other thing is the lose board in my garage that the my cat was able to get through on my side after he was on her side was kicked down by the landlord because in the police report it says the board was lose in the garage the landlord never fixed the board he only fixed her side and put up a whole new board. I just want to know is this a valid reason to evict me ?