When canI raise rent?
Get Legal Help Today
Secured with SHA-256 Encryption
When canI raise rent?
I have a 2 year lease with tenants. In the contract it is written: “Tenant agrees to pay $2500 per month for the term of the agreement”. It is also written “Rent will increase 5% at the end of each year (12month period)”. Can I increase the rent at the end of the first year of the contract?
Asked on December 16, 2011 under Real Estate Law, California
SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney
Answered 9 years ago | Contributor
A lease, like any contract, is enforceable as per its plain terms. From what you write, the lease calls for a 5% increase at the end of the first year, even though that's not the end of the lease term. That is perfectly legal--usually, in multi-year leases, there are periodic increases. The only difficulty is that the language about it being $2,500 per month for the term of the agreement does create some ambiguity. While I believe, based on the quoted language, that the best interpretation is a base rate of $2,500, subject to a 5% increase after one year, be prepared that if the tenants disagree, you will have to decide whether it is worth suing them to get the extra $125 per month.
IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.