What to do about a notice regarding a lease termination?

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What to do about a notice regarding a lease termination?

My husband and I rent a property for my mother-in-law. Recently the we got notice that the house would be going up for auction and foreclosure. We choose to move her to another property before this could happen and gave a written 30 days notice on the 15th of this month. Now my husband is listed as the guarantor on the rental lease and my MIL is just the tenant. I am not on the lease but frequently have had conversations with the landlord re: the property. I wrote the notice from myself and my husband, both of us listed in the letterhead; I signed it (my husband did not). She received the notice, held it for 2 weeks and returned it saying it was dented since I was not on the lease and that she expected rent in full for next month.

Asked on December 30, 2012 under Real Estate Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If you mother in law is the tenant, then neither you nor your husband could terminate her tenancy, even if termination on 30 days notice were allowed (being a guarantor does not actually make one the tenant). If the lease could be terminated on 30 days  notice, it would have to be your mother in law who provided that notice; since she did not, the landlord would seem to be entitled to rent.

Another issue would  be whether you could terminate your tenancy on 30 days notice. If it was a month to month tenancy, or if it was a tenancy for a specific period of time (for example, a one-year lease) but one which allowed early termination on notice, then the tenant (your MIL) could terminate it on 30 days notice; but if it was a written lease for a specific period of time without an early termination clause, it may not be terminated early.

 


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