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Leases have to be in writing...? -- [Virginia law]

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  • Leases have to be in writing...? -- [Virginia law]

    "Leases have to be in writing, signed by both parties or else there is no lease, no contract." From a kind person her.

    Is this correct in the state of Virginia, I asked the regional manager by phone and he stated that all their renewal for entire period of the the original lease period and never convert to month-to-month. Also, the only lease I signed us from April 19, 2014- October 30, 2013
    Does anyone have specific Virginia legal information. The management company headquarters are in Indiana.

  • #2
    re: Leases have to be in writing...? -- [Virginia law]

    You need to read YOUR lease. On a standard VA residential lease a box can be checked that allows the lease to automatically self-renew at the previous lease terms.

    As long as they didn't make any changes you'd have to sign off on (such as raising your rent) then they may well be correct. It doesn't mean you can't leave, but until a new tenant is found you owe the rent.

    Also, even if you didn't sign the original lease, moving in and paying rent ratifies it.

    Comment


    • #3
      re: Leases have to be in writing...? -- [Virginia law]

      I wish to inform you that the provisions of § 55-248.4. Definitions will have jurisdiction in this matter. It is stated therein that "rental agreement" or "lease agreement" means all agreements, written or oral, and valid rules and regulations adopted under § 55-248.17 embodying the terms and conditions concerning the use and occupancy of a dwelling unit and premises. A lease agreement may be oral although it may be difficult to prove it.

      AFF

      Comment


      • #4
        re: Leases have to be in writing...? -- [Virginia law]

        Originally posted by Ms Purple View Post
        "Leases have to be in writing, signed by both parties or else there is no lease, no contract." From a kind person her.

        s this correct in the state of Virginia, I asked the regional manager by phone and he stated that all their renewal for entire period of the the original lease period and never convert to month-to-month. Also, the only lease I signed us from April 19, 2014- October 30, 2013

        Does anyone have specific Virginia legal information. The management company headquarters are in Indiana.
        The requirements that a lease be in writing are universal throughout the states. A lease is a contract and requires both parties assent.

        Your lease ran out October 30, 2013. From then on you were a holdover tenant.
        Regardless of what the manager said.

        If they persist, by all means retain a Virginia lawyer to settle the matter for once and for all with their Illinois management.

        Comment


        • #5
          re: Leases have to be in writing...? -- [Virginia law]

          55-248.37. Periodic tenancy; holdover remedies.

          A. The landlord or the tenant may terminate a week-to-week tenancy by serving a written notice on the other at least seven days prior to the next rent due date. The landlord or the tenant may terminate a month-to-month tenancy by serving a written notice on the other at least 30 days prior to the next rent due date, unless the rental agreement provides for a different notice period. The landlord and the tenant may agree in writing to an early termination of a rental agreement. In the event that no such agreement is reached, the provisions of § 55-248.35 shall control.

          B. If the tenant remains in possession without the landlord's consent after expiration of the term of the rental agreement or its termination, the landlord may bring an action for possession and may also recover actual damages, reasonable attorney fees, and court costs, unless the tenant proves by a preponderance of the evidence that the failure of the tenant to vacate the dwelling unit as of the termination date was reasonable. The landlord may include in the rental agreement a reasonable liquidated damage penalty, not to exceed an amount equal to 150 percent of the per diem of the monthly rent, for each day the tenant remains in the dwelling unit after the termination date specified in the landlord's notice. However, if the dwelling unit is a public housing unit or other housing unit subject to regulation by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, any liquidated damage penalty shall not exceed an amount equal to the per diem of the monthly rent set out in the lease agreement. If the landlord consents to the tenant's continued occupancy, § 55-248.7 applies.

          C. In the event of termination of a rental agreement and the tenant remains in possession with the agreement of the landlord either as a hold-over tenant or a month-to-month tenant and no new rental agreement is entered into, the terms of the terminated agreement shall remain in effect and govern the hold-over or month-to-month tenancy, except that the amount of rent shall be either as provided in the terminated rental agreement or the amount set forth in a written notice to the tenant, provided that such new rent amount shall not take effect until the next rent due date coming 30 days after the notice. "

          This is the applicable portion of Virginia's Landlord Tenant Act. It governs periodic tenancies. A lease is not a periodic tenancy but a tenancy for a set term.

          There is nothing in the Act I can find that automatically renews a lease without signed agreement of both parties. See a Virginia real estate lawyer is my recommendation.

          Comment


          • #6
            re: Leases have to be in writing...? -- [Virginia law]

            Since it's clear OP that you and the LL are not in agreement regarding termination and lease period then this, in fact, applies:

            § 55-248.7. Terms and conditions of rental agreement; copy for tenant; accounting of rental payments.

            A. A landlord and tenant may include in a rental agreement, terms and conditions not prohibited by this chapter or other rule of law, including rent, charges for late payment of rent, term of the agreement, automatic renewal of the rental agreement, requirements for notice of intent to vacate or terminate the rental agreement, and other provisions governing the rights and obligations of the parties.

            B. In the absence of a rental agreement, the tenant shall pay as rent the fair rental value for the use and occupancy of the dwelling unit.

            C. Rent shall be payable without demand or notice at the time and place agreed upon by the parties. Unless otherwise agreed, rent is payable at the place designated by the landlord and periodic rent is payable at the beginning of any term of one month or less and otherwise in equal installments at the beginning of each month. If the landlord receives from a tenant a written request for an accounting of charges and payments, he shall provide the tenant with a written statement showing all debits and credits over the tenancy or the past 12 months, whichever is shorter. The landlord shall provide such written statement within 10 business days of receiving the request.

            D. Unless the rental agreement fixes a definite term, the tenancy shall be week to week in case of a roomer who pays weekly rent, and in all other cases month to month. Terminations of tenancies shall be governed by § 55-248.37 unless the rental agreement provides for a different notice period.

            E. If the rental agreement contains any provision whereby the landlord may approve or disapprove a sublessee or assignee of the tenant, the landlord shall within 10 business days of receipt by him of the written application of the prospective sublessee or assignee on a form to be provided by the landlord, approve or disapprove the sublessee or assignee. Failure of the landlord to act within 10 business days shall be deemed evidence of his approval.

            F. A copy of any written rental agreement signed by both the tenant and the landlord shall be provided to the tenant within one month of the effective date of the written rental agreement. The failure of the landlord to deliver such a rental agreement shall not affect the validity of the agreement.

            G. No unilateral change in the terms of a rental agreement by a landlord or tenant shall be valid unless (i) notice of the change is given in accordance with the terms of the rental agreement or as otherwise required by law and (ii) both parties consent in writing to the change.

            H. The landlord shall provide the tenant with a written receipt, upon request from the tenant, whenever the tenant pays rent in the form of cash or money order.

            Comment


            • #7
              re: Leases have to be in writing...? -- [Virginia law]

              In the original lease signed by me, there is a clause that has "Automatic Renewal of Lease".
              "This lease will be automatically renewed for a period of like term unless written notice is given by either party at least 60 days before the end of the above lease term, renewal term, extension term, unless another lease is sign by both parties."

              I originally signed a 6 month lease (in April 12, 2013) and let it roll over for another 6 six months signing a one page agreement. They had the wrong effective date on the second lease (two months early) and I crossed out that date with the correct date and signed it. They didn't give the lease with the corrected date. They gave me a new lease with the correct date, but I didn't sign that one.

              Comment


              • #8
                re: Leases have to be in writing...? -- [Virginia law]

                Missing that 60 day window has really harmed you. Once again you can still move but until the unit is re-rented you are on the hook for the rent.

                Comment


                • #9
                  re: Leases have to be in writing...? -- [Virginia law]

                  Originally posted by Ms Purple View Post
                  In the original lease signed by me, there is a clause that has "Automatic Renewal of Lease".
                  "This lease will be automatically renewed for a period of like term unless written notice is given by either party at least 60 days before the end of the above lease term, renewal term, extension term, unless another lease is sign by both parties."

                  I originally signed a 6 month lease (in April 12, 2013) and let it roll over for another 6 six months signing a one page agreement. They had the wrong effective date on the second lease (two months early) and I crossed out that date with the correct date and signed it. They didn't give the lease with the corrected date. They gave me a new lease with the correct date, but I didn't sign that one.
                  Ah, you failed to mention the automatic renewal clause.

                  At this point, you may well be stuck because you did not give notice 60 days before you intended not to renew.

                  When asking for information, it helps to have all the salient points -- like an automatic renewal clause when trying to get out of renewal of lease.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    re: Leases have to be in writing...? -- [Virginia law]

                    Or to know to ask the question.

                    Comment

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