If my rental is sold, what are my rights if the new owner’s want to move in?

UPDATED: Sep 12, 2011

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If my rental is sold, what are my rights if the new owner’s want to move in?

When I was looking to rent, a realtor was involved. She told me about this home and that the owner was going to sell it, but the contract fell through. Subsequently, upon meeting the owner, I asked her point blank are you looking to sell? If so, I don’t want to consider renting because I needed to rent for a specific period of time. She assured me she was no longer interested in selling the home. Then 2 weeks after I moved in, she signed a contract and subsequently sold the home. I signed a lease with her for 2 years, what’s my recourse?

Asked on September 12, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Virginia


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

You need to carefully read your written lease between yourself and your current landlord in that its terms control the obligations owed to you and vice versa in the absence of conflicting state law. If your written lease with your current landlord is for two (2) years, then even if the owner of your rental (landlord) sells it to a new owner, the new owner is obligated to have you remain for the balance ofyour term under the lease even after title transfers from one owner to another.

Most likely you will be provided with a "tenant estoppel" certificate to fill out before the sale. This document is designed to provide information to the potential buyer of the rental as to the terms of your lease and any problems with the rental.

Recourse: If you wish to remain in the rental for the balance of your agreed upon term, you can.

Good luck.

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