If my husband was renting out a house which I got as part of our divorce and now I need to live there, am I able to break the current tenant’s lease as the new owner?

I just got divorced. My ex-husband has agreed to give me the house that he is currently renting out but the tenant just renewed lease. I would be the new owner and I need to reside in the property for a year while I become mortgage ready.

Asked on August 6, 2015 under Real Estate Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

No, you cannot break the lease. You acquire the house subject to the lease, because the owner (your ex-husband) cannot give you more rights than he himself has, and that was a house with a tenant, where he, as owner, did not have the right to possesson while the lease was in effect. You do not have to renew the lease, but you cannot terminate it early, unless the tenant gives you good cause for eviction, like failing to pay rent.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

No, you cannot break the lease. You acquire the house subject to the lease, because the owner (your ex-husband) cannot give you more rights than he himself has, and that was a house with a tenant, where he, as owner, did not have the right to possesson while the lease was in effect. You do not have to renew the lease, but you cannot terminate it early, unless the tenant gives you good cause for eviction, like failing to pay rent.


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