Rental Agreements

  • Must be Lawful, Possible, and Definite (Civil Code 1596)

Written Agreements

  • Clarify terms and expectations
  • Provide proof of the terms of the agreement
  • Supercede prior negotiations (Civil Code 1625)

Oral Agreements

  • Are legally binding (Civil Code 1622), but are difficult to prove in court
  • If agreement to a lease of a rental unit is for more than one year, the agreement must be in writing to be enforceable (Civil Code 1624(a)(3).)

Fixed Term Lease

  • Fixes rent and conditions for a specific period

Implied Renewal of Lease (Civil Code 1945)

  • When fixed term lease expires, it becomes month to month if landlord accepts further payment of rent

Automatic Renewal Provisions

  • Some leases call for automatic renewal if the tenant stays beyond the fixed term
  • This is only legal if the provision is printed in at least 8-point bold-faced type in the body of the text and restated immediately above where the tenant signs the lease (Civil Code 1945.5)

Month to Month Agreement

  • Tenancy can end with a minimum 30 day notice by landlord (Civil Code 789) or minimum 60 day notice for leases lasting more than 1 year
  • Rent can increase with a minimum 30 day notice

Additional Documents: