In August 2011, I signed a 1 year lease on my current apartment. At that time I also paid a security deposit & the last month's rent. Since then, my lease was renewed each 9/1 and my rent amount also increased. I never received a lease renewal for the period beginning 9/1/14, so I've been a "tenant at will" since then. My plan was to move to a new apartment in the Winter of 2015/2016, but I just received a lease renewal in the mail that will begin 9/1/15. I don't want to sign it because the rent has gone up significantly. So now I'm scrambling to find a new place to live for a 9/1 move in date. I can't afford the new lease & I don't know how quickly I'll be able to find a new place. What are my rights and obligations? I don't want to jeopardize the $ I paid for last month's rent & security
If you only received a lease renewal, then there is no immediate threat. If your landlord wants you to leave, then he/she needs to serve you with a notice to quit. As long as you are current in your rent payments (and you pay rent on a monthly basis), you will receive a 30-day notice to quit (you can only receive a 14-day notice to quit for nonpayment of rent). Once the 30-day period lapses, your landlord will then need to serve you with a summary process summons and complaint. There are plenty of resources out there if you want to figure out how to represent yourself in such a case.
Know this: refusing to sign the lease renewal does not mean you have to leave. Your landlord must still terminate your at-will tenancy.
Best of luck,
An attorney-client relationship has not been created as a result of this communication. Any information provided by this attorney should not be construed as legal advice.
I agree with Attorney Padini but would also suggest you reach out and talk to the landlord. Your landlord may be willing to continue a Tenancy at Will or agree to a short term renewal.
I agree with both of my Brothers. I would also suggest reviewing the security deposit statute to ensure your landlord has complied with the requirements.
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