My question involves landlord-tenant law in the State of: Maryland
I will try to make this short and to the point!
I lived in a apartment community for almost 2 years. Initially signing my 1st year lease agreement April 2008-2009. I loved where i lived so i agreed to sign a 2nd year for April 2009-2010. Going on the 3rd year (april 2010-2011) Around February i was sent a reminder of either renewing my lease which went up a few dollars or to go month to month. In my busy schedule i didn't remember going into the rental office to sign it, but started to pay my new rate for the new year agreement. I let 3months past, because i really needed to know if i signed it. Once July hit, I went to the rental office to ask if I could get a copy because if I signed it, im pretty sure i would have had my copy in my files. The rental office could not produce it. They said they couldn't find it and asked if I could resign another. At that time, I was having family issues and was considering moving out, so I insisted on not resigning, and that I would give them a week to contact me if they found it. August rolled around and they didn't contact me. So September 1st I gave a 30 day notice to move out, being that I wasn't signed/locked in to a year agreement. The rental office accepted my 30 day notice and gave me information and signature with move out instructions (returning keys, cleaning, etc.) September 30, I was moved out and keys were turned in. It was a perfect/decent transition. Two weeks after moving I was mailed a letter stating the specifics and was hit with a $5,000 and such balance for breaking my lease term. Basically having 7 more months to pay- I was under the impression that either I didn't sign/renew my lease for that year, or the rental office lost it and wanted me to resign, because they couldn't and never provided me my copy. This is when i felt it was safe to give my notice and that i wasn't locked into any agreement.. I need advice. Thanx