Legal Question in Landlord & Tenant Law in California

We just signed a lease for an apartment in California (SF Bay Area) in January. The lease is for 1 year and expires January 2019. We got an email from the corporation that owns the apartment complex saying that they will be doing renovations inside our apartment between April to November. This would involve remodeling the kitchen, bathroom, carpets, etc. Afterwards, our rent will increase. We did not know this when we signed the lease as this was put in an email to us dated March 1st 2018 and none of this was stated on the lease.

Would this give us legal grounds to break the lease without a penalty provided we give at least 30 days notice? (Their penalty for breaking the lease is two month's rent)

Asked on 3/07/18, 5:19 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Gerald Dorfman Dorfman Law Office

You describe an outrageous situation. First, if the landlord intended to undertake extensive renovations, but signed a lease without disclosing those intentions, that could constitute fraud. When one party knows of a material fact which impacts a transaction, which the other could not know about, it is fraud. One option could be for you to rescind the lease. You could also sue for breach. You could also stay, and refuse to allow entry under California Civil Code section 1954. In addition to financial damages, if the lease provided for attorney fees, you may be entitled to them as well. In order to review your options, you should have a consultation with an attorney, who will want to review the lease, any emails and any other documents related to the rental. Good luck.

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Answered on 3/08/18, 8:01 am

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