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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    2

    Default Can Landord Change Mind on Rent Increase After Emailing That There Would Be None

    My question involves landlord-tenant law in the State of: NY

    I have been in the same apartment for two years going on three. My lease is up Sept 29th and about two weeks ago I emailed my landlord asking if he was planning to increase my rent. I wrote I enjoyed the apartment and would like to stay but might have to make arrangements to find a new apartment. He emailed me back within the hour saying he would renew at the same price. I thanked him for his time and said I would be in touch. I was very relieved proceeded to make plans to stay in the apartment and was planning to email him back within two weeks (my lease ends Sept 29th).

    Nine days later I received an email from the landlord saying he had time to speak with his realtor and found out he could get more for the apartment and is now no longer able to offer the same rate. He would be raising rent $250 per month and that he was sorry, because I was a great tenant and if it was an insignificant change, he would keep it the same, but he needs to raise it. He checked with the realtor because 'he had not heard back' and wanted to just check the current rate.

    I wrote back he had not given me any deadlines to get back to him and it had only been nine days. I also stated that I would have waited if he said he wanted to speak to his realtor BEFORE giving me a final answer. I asked him to reconsider, even asking for a 6 month renewal at the current rate and he said no. I reminded him he stated in the email he would NOT raise it and he said that wouldn't hold, and he couldn't hold me to stay if he tried. Of course, because I said I was INTERESTED in staying (which defeats his argument he hadn't heard back....).

    Will this email hold up given no lease has been signed for renewal? What can I do at this point? I don't want to threaten or he might not let me stay at the raised rent (which is a SLIGHT possibility). Is court pointless/worth it?

    THANK YOU!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    38,867

    Default Re: Can Landord Change Mind on Rent Increase if Written in Email?

    If you had formally accepted the offer, you might have something but since you didn't, he could change the terms offered at will.


    Of course, because I said I was INTERESTED in staying (which defeats his argument he hadn't heard back....).
    He didn't hear back from you so his argument is valid. Yours isn't.

    The last time I saw a Maserati Quattroporte for sale, I told the seller I was interested. That doesn't mean I was going to buy it. Just meant I was interested which is not binding on anybody.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Can Landord Change Mind on Rent Increase if Written in Email?

    Thank you. He told me to get back to him if I was going to accept and I said I would be in touch but did not give me a deadline to let him know -isn't that an open ended contract?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    38,867

    Default Re: Can Landord Change Mind on Rent Increase if Written in Email?

    He told me to get back to him if I was going to accept and I said I would be in touch but did not give me a deadline to let him know -isn't that an open ended contract?
    No.



    It is an open ended offer which means, it can be altered without notice or regards to any specific passage of time. He rescinded that offer by giving you a new offer with the higher rent.

    a contract has several parts that must be present for it to be a contract.

    1. offer
    2. acceptance
    3 consideration by both parties
    4. meeting of the minds (basically that both parties agree to what the contract means)

    If you don't have all of the above, you don't have a contract. You are missing at least 2 (2 and 3) of the 4 required to consider anything a contract.

    You were offered a contract. You did not accept it. LL rescinded and put forth a different offer to contract before you accepted the the first contract offered. That's where you are now.

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