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Questions and Answers

Your Questions About Apartment Rental Agreement California

October 20, 2012

Sharon asks…

can i evict tenants without a rental agreement?

ok so basically my father owns a triplex and has some terrible tenants. The man is extremely disrespectful and disrespects my father and mother all the time. He thinks he owns the property because hes been living here for quite some time already. He was here when my father bought the property and my father decided to let them stay because the man is from the same place my dad grew up in (i know terrible mistake) but my dad just wanted to keep things at peace with everyone. Problem is they don’t think the same. Just yesterday they threw water through the window and wet my mom. My mom went up there to tell them to please not throw water through the windows because they wet her. The man came out and disrespected her and when my mom noticed that they had a dog in the apartment, she told him they couldn’t have a dog and he basically said that he doesn’t take orders from her because shes a woman and he’ll “deal” with it with my father and that he was gonna keep the dog regardless. My father sent them a written notice the beginning of the year telling them they weren’t allowed to have pets in the apartment. Problem is that they have no written rental agreement. so my question is, how can we get rid of these terrible tenants!? can we evict them because they broke the rules of having a dog even if they dont have a rental agreement? please help.we live in California btw, if that helps at all.

btw they keep the dog out in the balcony all day with no shade whatsoever. plus the dog urinates and stuff up there and just last time some feces flew off down into our property. I’m sick of them already

Administrator answers:

You don’t have to evict them, you just give them 60 day notice to vacate (in CA if you are there over a year, it’s 60 days). If they do not vacate, then you evict.

Or you could take the letter telling them they can’t have the dog and some date stamped photos of the dog and evict them for that right now.

Lack of a rental agreement makes it EASIER not harder.

Sandy asks…

How much can apartment rent be increased in California?

If I understand correctly, rent can be increased up to 10% with a 30-day notice, and 10% or more with a 60-day notice. This is for an area without rent control.

We’re on a 1 year lease with monthly rent of $1500. About 35 days before the end of the lease, our landlord gives us a notice about our renewal options:
$1550 if we sign a 6 or 12-month lease.
$1875 if we choose a month-to-month agreement.

We were really planning to go on a month-to-month agreement, but the increase from $1500 to $1875 is really huge. Does this violate the 60-day notice requirement? Considering that the rent for a 6 or 12 month lease didn’t go up by more than 10%, the landlord has given 30-day notice of the rental increase. However, for the $1875 rent, he hasn’t given 60-day notice. What do you think?

Administrator answers:

You’re correct, he has to give you 60 days notice for more than 10%. So if you go month to month, he can charge you $149 more for the first month and then increase it till he meets his target. At the same time he can give you a 30 days notice to vacate if you become a pain.


Mandy asks…

Can a landlord charge for carpet and paint if stated in a rental agreement? (CA)?

My roommate and I moved out of our apartment after living there for 18 months. The landlord charged us a pro-rated amount for replacing the carpet and painting the walls. There was no damage beyond normal wear and tear. There were a couple of small stains in the living room. Simple carpet cleaning would have sufficed. The hallway and bedrooms carpet were immaculate.

There was a clause in the rental agreement saying that if we moved out before 3 years, we would pay a pro-rated amount for new carpet and painting the walls. Is this even legal though? I am in California. Any help would be appreciated!

Administrator answers:

You signed the lease 18 months ago, and your just questioning this clause now???

You should consult a lawyer on whether such a clause is legal.

BTW…stains are NOT considered normal wear and tear.

Lisa asks…

How long can a guest stay in my apartment in Los Angeles, California?

I have a clause in my rental agreement that states a guest cannot stay overnight more than 10 days in a calendar year, after that I would be charged $75 a day up to 20 days. After 30 days blah, blah, blah.

I’m wondering if this is in violation of any city or state laws. I feel like I was once told that the CA Housing Authority states 30 consecutive days is the allowable limit, but I can’t find that information online.
I think it does matter what the CHA law states because I believe you cannot sign away rights that the law explicitly allows.
I’ve had someone apartment sitting for a couple weeks and the manager has been confronting him about whether or not he’s staying in my apartment and for how long.

Administrator answers:

What you are probably thinking of is not that a guest has the legal right to stay for 30 days, it’s that in some circumstances a guest gains tenant’s rights at 30 days occupancy. This is why overstaying guests/occupants must be handled as a serious matter. The owner can give you a 3 day notice to cure or quit (eviction) if you break any part of the rental agreement.

Good luck!

Laura asks…

If someone moved to another state can they really just rent an apartment or attend college without residency ?

in that state? example: someone from california wants to move to Colorado, can they just sign a rental agreement, and can they go and sign up a 2 year college, how does this work?
Legally, how does state residency work?
Do you have to tell the state that you are legally living there, whats the difference?

Administrator answers:

To PROVE residency, you need to show you have actually been LIVING THERE.. The length of time depends on the state. Rent receipts and untility bills are good proof as is a driver’s license.

Robert asks…

Can I lock my husband out of the apartment?


My husband and I are in the middle of an acrimonious period. He wants a divorce, but refuses to move out until we have a custody agreement in place (an attorney told him if he moved out I could claim abandonment). Anyway, I can’t stand having him here and want to take his keys. We are in a rental apartment in California. We seperated last year, and I rented this apartment in my name only. Five months ago, he moved in when we attempted a reconciliation, but his name was NOT added to the lease. Can the police force me to let him back in?

Neither of us have filed any divorce, seperation, or custody claims as of yet.
To the person concerned he’d be out in the cold – the man makes 200k a year, he can afford a hotel! I’m not that heartless!

Thanks for everyone’s replies!
Unfortunately, he is very difficult. He refuses to instigate a divorce at all unless I agree to share an attorney with him, agree to 50/50 custody of our child with no child support. I feel I should have primary custody of the kid and that he should pay something for her benefit. He has never, for example, purchased an item of clothing for her or any ancillary expenses. He’s paid her school tuition a few times, but that’s all. And he makes more money than me.

Anyway, he is threatening to try and get full custody of her unless I go along with the above plan … essentially extortion. He has much more money than I do, for expensive attorneys and the like, so I fear he might be successful in such a battle.

Oh, also if I kick him out he will consider that a ‘hostile act’ and also sue for full custody.

Am I wrong or do most guys just leave when they want a divorce?

Why me?

Administrator answers:

You need to file for separation not divorce. You are responsible for whatever happens in the apartment not him. Get moving!! You can reconcile later if you can but now protect yourself.

Chris asks…

One bedroom rental agreement?

So we moved in to a one bedroom apartment, my bf his young son (who at the time we only had 2 to 3 days a week but the landlord thought he was here full time) and myself. Since we moved in we had a baby and gained full custody of my stepson. Can we be evicted for having 4 ppl living here? My landlord asked me how many ppl live here now…. Im affraid to answer we cant afford to move right now we both were laid off and looking for work…… We live in santa clara cty california

Administrator answers:

Yes he can. City ordinances/fire codes may restrict home many people can occupy a 1 bedroom rental unit.

Richard asks…

How can I get an additional copy of my rental agreement (lease) of 20 years ago from my landlord?

(I did have my own copy 20 years ago, but have since lost track of that copy.)

I now need a copy of it to show the rent stabilization board that our 2-bedroom apartment included 2 parking spaces, and not just one. However, I’m concerned that if I just mail him a written request for a copy, that he may notice this discrepancy and either say he’s misplaced his copy or simply refuse to provide one. I am more than happy to pay any associated fee.

Is there any particular legal way to accomplish this that might be the most successful in getting a copy of the original document of 20 years ago?

I live in the city of Los Angeles, California. and our unit is under rent control.


Administrator answers:

Sorry to hear you have misplaced your Original copy of the lease of 20 years ago.
Even though you are under a rent control area the owner has the right to increase the rents according to the law.
If you have signed a new lease (and i`m sure you have in the 20 years)
The old lease would be of no use. As the new lease pertains to all. If the new lease will not have the 2 parking spaces into the contract then that would be that.
Best of luck getting the 20 year old lease. (oh by the way the owner is not required to keep copies of a 20 year old lease when a new one has been signed)

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