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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
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Experience:  JA Mentor
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I had a question regarding my current home lease. It ended

Customer Question

Hi I had a question regarding my current home lease. It ended on Nov 21st. I was notified a few days before it ending of a rental increase by email (Month to Month). I was under the impression they were required to give me a written notice of this of a 60 day length? I never received a letter and it is now December and they're asking for the new rate. Is this legal? ( I am in California)
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Hi,

I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today.

For a month to month lease, a landlord must give the tenant 60 days notice if the rent is being increased by 10% or more OR if the tenant has lived in the unit for more than one year. In all other cases, they must give the tenant 30 days notice. A rent increase notice given a few days before the end of the rental period would be ineffective, and the tenant could not be required to pay the increased rent or evicted for failing to do so. Cal. Civ. Code, Section 827(b).

Also, an emailed rent increase is not permitted by law. The notice must be delivered personally or mailed to the tenant (and when mailed, they get an additional five days notice). Section 827(a).

This site has more information that may be helpful.

http://www.dca.ca.gov/publications/legal_guides/lt-2.shtml

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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hey Lucy thanks for the quick response. Just wanted to clarify as I had a 1 year lease and it ended on Nov 21st. Our rent was originally 1400 and on Dec 1st they're asking for the new rate of about 1850. When a lease ends does a notice still stand? Trying to get as much information I can before I confront them as they're already charging me late fee's for not paying their new rate.
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you. I thought your question said that you're in a month-to-month lease. Those statutes only apply to month to month. There isn't a specific statute that addresses the amount of notice that must be given when renewing a lease of one year or more.

Check your original lease to see if it requires a specific amount of notice before they can increase the rent AND if it allows email notices.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Apologies! email will best fit me right now at work =), but I apologize for not clarifying. I had a 1 year lease which ended on the 21st. Our month to month started on the 22nd, but they only notified us of a rent increase 4 days before the 21st.
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

That's unfortunately allowed, unless the lease requires more notice. Sometimes they say the landlord needs to give 30 days notice of intent to renew (or not), so check to see what yours says.

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