Sam Him­mel­stein, a rental lawyer, says an oral agree­ment is always a bind­ing agree­ment. Depend­ing on your spe­cif­ic cir­cum­stances, your land­lord can‘t just increase your rent. But it‘s impor­tant to know how the law applies to your sit­u­a­tion. The only oral leas­es con­sid­ered legal­ly bind­ing in the state of Cal­i­for­nia are those that last less than a year. Beyond this restric­tion, the agree­ment must be in writ­ing when the dura­tion of a rental agree­ment is less than one year, but the valid­i­ty peri­od is more than one year from the date of the oral agree­ment. While the law grants this small lenien­cy for short-term oral leas­es, it is stat­ed that, for rea­sons of clar­i­ty and safe­ty of all par­ties involved, it is strong­ly rec­om­mend­ed that all leas­es be con­clud­ed in writ­ing. Since an oral con­tract is legal­ly bind­ing and cre­ates a legit­i­mate lease, the legal rights of both the land­lord and ten­ant apply under the Hous­ing Act, includ­ing the right of own­ers to repos­sess their prop­er­ty. You have the same oblig­a­tions as a ten­ant who has a writ­ten lease. For exam­ple, in my friend‘s case, you can‘t just tell her to leave with a 4‑day dead­line in the mid­dle of the agreed term just because there is no writ­ten lease. How­ev­er, it is a bit dif­fi­cult to prove when is the agreed end date of the lease. In any case, the ten­ant is enti­tled to at least 2 months‘ notice (i.e.

a legal right) for the dura­tion of the notice peri­od, which must be served with notice under Arti­cle 21. Ask the ten­ant to present a signed con­tract, which sets out this agree­ment. Tell them that you would like to abide by such an agree­ment made before your prop­er­ty. If not, offer new rental con­di­tions. And they can take it or leave it. Source: Ca​.gov, “Chap­ter 9 — Land­lord and ten­ant”, called July 21, 2016 As soon as a land­lord gives access to the prop­er­ty to a ten­ant and accepts the pay­ment of rent, an oral con­tract is con­clud­ed. So all this “out of my prop­er­ty in 3 days” will not fly, or at least it is not legal­ly applic­a­ble. Hel­lo, I am rent­ing a com­mer­cial prop­er­ty to the munic­i­pal­i­ty in a city cen­ter that is dying stand­ing. I do not have a writ­ten or oral agreement.

I have some rent arrears, I con­tact­ed the Board to see if they were going to reduce the rent to help me tem­porar­i­ly in my sit­u­a­tion, and they just said “no”. In 12 months, the shops are clos­ing every week and the Coun­cil has seen fit to bring 8 hair­dressers to our small town.