Is it legal if, when I questioned my landlord about my rent increase, she then forbid me from renewing my lease?

My rent was recently raised 27% with less than 30 days notice. When I went to question the property manager about it, we got into an arguement and I was told that I couldn’t renew my lease. I was still never given an explanation as to why my rent was raised such a high percentage. They are also telling their national office that I am a threat and they have told outside parties the same. I never made a threat, other than that I was going to call the national office.

Asked on June 12, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Colorado

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

This scenario can get real ugly real quickly so you need to protect yourself where you are and for future rental purposes. If this is a national office, then maybe the national office doesn't understand the concept that in most states, rent increases cannot occur during a signed and legally enforceable term lease (one year or longer). If your lease is one year or longer, your rent cannot be increased. Period. You need to contact your state's consumer protection agency that handles landlord tenant issues and file a complaint. As to the mandate to not renew your lease, the landlord does not have to renew your lease.  The last issue is whether a 27% increase in general is legal. Generally, no. But you need to check with the agency who handles landlord tenant matters to see if in your particular scenario the rent raise was illegal.

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If your written lease contains a provicion where you could renew your lease for an extended period of time and the time to do so is still open, you can do so under the express terms of your lease. As such, you need to carefully read the terms of your written lease in that such controls the obligations owed to you by the landlord and vice versa.

If there is no option for your to renew your lease the written document, then your landlord can refuse to extend your lease. Likewise, the landlord can increase your monthly rental as well if your current lease does not have a provision against such.

I suggest that you bring your written lease to a landlord tenant attorney for further review if you have further questions about your situation.

 


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