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MShore Law
MShore Law, Attorney
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 25285
Experience:  Drafted Negotiated and/or Reviewed Thousands of Commercial Agreements
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i bought a business from a tenant of a certain business. the

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i bought a business from a tenant of a certain business. the landlord agreed to the arrangement and asked the tenant to cancel his lease. we then entered a verbal lease with the landlord for the occupation of the property. after a month the landlord wanted to increase rent and we entered into negotiations. we did not agree because the landlord wanted to increase the rent by 100%. the landlord now wants to evict me.
he claims that :
1. he does not know me and doesn't recognize me as his tenant
2. that since we did not agree on the rentals there is no lease between us
3. that he still recognizes the old tenant as the tenant despite the fact that the old tenant cancelled his lease in writing .

what are my rights?
Thank you for the post, I am happy to assist you by answering your questions. Is there any thing in writing establishing your right to occupy the property as a tenant?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

there is nothing in writing. it was all a verbal agreement, my only witnesses are the previous tenant from whom i bought the business and one of his employees who was present when we were discussing

Thank you Biggie, as a business owner, I gather that you value an honeyyt and candor, and certainly do not want me to mislead you or sugarcoat the law to tell you what you want to hear. Indeed, I would be doing you a disservice to mislead you and trust that you will not rate me negatively for telling you the truth. Have you paid any sum in rent for the month you have occupied the property?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

i have paid rent for two months. the landlord now refuses to accept rent for the third month and is trying to suggest that he thought the rentals for those two months were coming from the old tenant

The landlord's belief is unjustified as a matter of law, you are now a month to month tenant as you have established a tenancy in the property and the periodic nature of your tenancy marked by your rent payment dates. If the landlord did not want to recognize you as a tenant, the landlord should have refused your lease paymetns and requested that the former tenant issue the payments or issue a statement that you were the former tenant's agent. As a month to month tenant, you have the right to occupy the property during the period of your lease (i.e. for each month that you pay rent). However, either party can terminate the month to month tenancy upon 30 days' advance notice if intent not to renew. Do you know how strong the commercial leasing sector is in the area where the property is located? I ask because I am trying to determine how much leverage you have with the landlord.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

In my area the commercial leasing sector is very strong. its almost impossible to get a commercial property to rent. if i loose on this one it might take me forever to get another place

Thank you Biggie, you are in an unforutnate situation then as the landlord has all of the leverage. A written lease was never executed, therefore your rights in the property are limited to the ability to remain through each monthly lease term (i.e. month to month lease, renewed each time the landlord accepts your monthly rental payment). Is there any evidence at all which sugests that the landlord agreed or at least represented he would agree to lease the property to you under the same terms as the former tenant?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

thank you for responding fast today. yes he gave a quote on the renovations that were to be effected on the property. his quote was $50000 but i believe i will have to spend more. i agreed to do the renovations though i have not yet started because he later stopped me.. i believe such renovations cannot be justified by a month's lease and i belived he wanted to give me a very long lease. he then gave me a draft lease during the second month that had a 1 year renewable lease but i never signed it since i did not agree on the rentals he was now requesting.

Thank you Biggie, presenting the lease is evidence of an intent to establish a tenancy per the terms of that lease, but because it was never signed, as you know, it is not binding. Did you present a counter proposal (modified lease) for the landlord's consideration?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

unfortunately i never presented him with the counter proposal

ok, your recourse in this situation is to negotiate a resolution with the landlord, the landlord however has all of the leverage as there is a month to month tenancy established and no binding committment on the part of either party to continue the lease beyond the next month. I'm really sorry, I wish the answer was different, but just as the landlord cannot force you to remain in the property if you wanted to leave, you cannot force the landlord to continue leasing to you unless and until you all agree upon lease terms. Please let me know if this does not answer your question of what rights you have, or if you have any follow up questions. If I have answered your questions please positively rate my answers.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

cant i be said to be having an oral lease. with my two witnesses is it going to be difficult to prove it. would it make any difference if i send to him my counter proposal now

You can claim an oral lease, but as a practical matter all the landlord has to do is deny ever agreeing to the specific terms of such an oral lease, and you could not prove that he did agree to specific terms. With respect to your rights to continue to lease the property, no, sending a counter proposal now would not establish any right to continue to remain there beyond the period you have paid for, but you should send the counter as soon as possible to commence negotiations for a lease of greater duration than one month.
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