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Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 35301
Experience:  16 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years
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I have an interesting situation. I have been leasing a

Customer Question

I have an interesting situation. I have been leasing a property in Northern Ca.Last October we began negotiating for another two year lease. The landlords came up with an option to buy doc as we had mentioned we might be able to buy the home.This would be for 4 years and had a clause that if the owners needed to sell for any reason they could give us 90 days to vacate. but, along with that document they gave us a separate lease agreement, standard, which was for two years ending in Oct 2017. $ months into this lease they told us they were selling next March which would be 7 months before the end of the lease. They are using the agreement in the Option to Buy doc but there is n to provision in the actual lease. I am trying to find out if the lease is valid and if the option doc negates the lease.
Submitted: 12 months ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Barrister replied 12 months ago.

Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I am a licensed attorney who will try my very best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can. There may be a slight delay in my responses as I research statutes or ordinances and type out an answer or reply, but rest assured, I am working on your question.

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In a situation like this where there are inconsistent contractual documents, if this gets to court, a judge is going to construe the contracts against the party who drafted them. So if the landlord created the contracts, the judge will interpret them in your favor.

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I would opine that the judge would rule that the 2 year lease is the "most" binding and that while they can sell the property, the buyer would take it subject to that 2 year lease. I also think that the judge would rule that they could terminate the option with 90 days notice, but you would have that 90 days to purchase the property if you could obtain financing..

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Obviously this is just my professional opinion based on your comments and your actual results may vary..

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As an aside, in addition to being an attorney, I have also been a landlord for over 26 years...

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 12 months ago.

so if I am to understand...the landlord cannot use the 90 day clause in the option document to negate the 2 year lease, so the 2 year lease is active until expiration.?

Expert:  Barrister replied 12 months ago.

.the landlord cannot use the 90 day clause in the option document to negate the 2 year lease, so the 2 year lease is active until expiration.?

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Yes, that is how I would interpret the situation since the contracts conflict with each other as the 90 day clause only relates to the 4 year agreement.. Judges will interpret conflicting contracts like this in favor of the tenant if the landlord drafted the contracts.

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thanks

Barrister

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