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Maryland Real Estate Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Landlord - Tenant for Maryland on
Q: If I'm a year to year tenant in md and a landlord refuse to renew. Does real property code 8-402 subsection 3 apply
Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley answered on Jul 23, 2021

Yes, and no contrary provision in your written lease is legal to alter the 90 day notice to quit requirement for year-to-year leases. However, a lease with a one year term is not a year-to-year lease simply on account of the lease term being one year. A year-to-year tenancy automatically renews... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: What is the precedence proving when a contract is ratified. Is it when it is signed or when it is sent to the buyer?

Meaning if the seller signs it and holds it for 5 days, the buyer cannot meet the timeline to setup up inspections before the 10 day timeframe. Can the seller state the buyer is at fault for not meeting their deadlines?

Update: Was the response specific to MD or is the precedence valid in... Read more »

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley answered on Jul 21, 2021

Offer + acceptance = ratified contract. Acceptance has to be communicated to be valid; there is no “secret” acceptance of a contract. However, a contract offer that is signed and placed in the mail is accepted on the date it is posted in the mail (unless the offer is made contingent on a... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Landlord - Tenant for Maryland on
Q: Month to month unwritten lease, landlord changing verbal 60 day notice to vacate to written 30 day.

I have been renting on a month to month unwritten lease since January. My landlord, on June 29th gave me a verbal 60 day notice to vacate by August 28th. Then on July 8th, gave me a written notice to vacate by July 31st. Is it legal to change the vacate parameters? I have 2 other witnesses who can... Read more »

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley answered on Jul 9, 2021

Month-to-month tenancies require 30 day notice to vacate, so the July 8 notice to vacate by July 31 is not 30 days notice and is invalid. A landlord and tenant can agree to a longer notice, but it is unclear that you have such an agreement in place. You describe the landlord as merely giving you... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: Does new owner simply take over existing leases of apartment building? Can we remain in unit until lease expires?

PG County, MD

Year long lease

Expires in May 2022

New Owner took Possession in June 2021

Tenant in good standing. No lease violations.

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg answered on Jun 26, 2021

The sale should have no effect on your lease. A valid lease from a prior owner remains valid in accordance with its terms and local landlord-tenant law. On very rare occasions, the buyer will be unaware of the current tenant, but the far far more likely situation is where the buyer bought the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: How Do You Prove Adverse Possession

How Do You Prove Adverse Possession Adverse Possession Elements.

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg answered on Jun 24, 2021

This looks like the seventh or eighth Justia question on this from Burtonsville in the last 24 hours. Unless you have:

POSSESSED

OPENLY

ADVERSELY

CONTINUOUSLY, and

HOSTILELY

For the requisite time — usually 21 years but 15 years in DC — you’ve...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: Adverse Possession What Do I Tell The Judge Regarding The Course Of Action That Occurred Occurred On January 01 2020.

Adverse Possession What Do I Tell The Judge Regarding The Course Of Action That Occurred Occurred On January 01 2020. Regarding The Filing Date Regarding The Quiet Title Action Regarding The Elements Of The Adverse Possession .... Can I Have All Dates To Say (January 01 2020) Regarding The Date... Read more »

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg answered on Jun 24, 2021

This verbal word salad will get you nowhere except an eviction or a trespass conviction. If you can’t name the five elements of adverse possession and explain how you meet them, you need a lawyer. If you can’t afford a lawyer, you can’t afford the property. The state may pay for your lawyer... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: Is The Law Of Adverse Possession (clearly established law )

Is The Law Of Adverse Possession (clearly established law) And And How Do The Police Determine Adverse Possession From Anything Else?

Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet answered on Jun 22, 2021

Adverse possession is a civil legal concept. In Maryland, it is an inchoate claim that must be brought in court. Once all elements are proven, a court may grant possession and authorize recording of an instrument that includes the possessed property.

The police have absolutely zero to do...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Real Estate Law, Land Use & Zoning and Lemon Law for Maryland on
Q: "The law does not stand anywhere." Is this a fact of legal theory, or just something with which to hit me on the head

Your statement: The Law does not stand anywhere. Et tu quo que.

Your view of the Law depends upon where you stand; and where you stand depends upon the Laws view of you.

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg answered on Jun 19, 2021

The law’s view of condo governance is that the condo documents control, except where they don’t. There is no statute on BBQ on the balcony unless it violates fire code, but the condo association MIGHT be able to regulate it… if they did it correctly… which they often don’t.

2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law and Land Use & Zoning for Maryland on
Q: I bought the house, and land; not included were two small barns; with underground electric fed from the house.

I bought the house from the ex-wife; the ex-husband apparently owned the two small barns on the small adjoining lot; with shared utilities from the house. I've been told by a realtor that the small lots cannot be separated from the main property in this way by the previous owner divorcees. I... Read more »

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg answered on Jun 19, 2021

The law doesn’t “stand” anywhere. Your presumably discount purchase and closing resolves who owns what. Get a lawyer to read and interpret your deed and then look to the title insurance to defend your deed. If you have neither a recorded deed nor title insurance, your payment of taxes is... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: Can an electric grill be used on a balcony in a multi unit condo community?
Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg answered on Jun 19, 2021

You need to review your condo Decalstions, Bylaws, and Rules & Regulations and then evaluate whether there was compliance with those governing documents in creating whatever rule you are challenging. There may be local fire prevention laws, but the analysis starts at the condo governing... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: I am having a problem with a HOA .They wnat me to stop my family childcare business.
Scott Scherr
Scott Scherr answered on Jun 16, 2021

You would need to review the bylaws and regulations of your homeowner's association as well as the county code to see whether you are allowed to operate a childcare business. You can ask the HOA for authority to support their position that you cannot run the childcare business out of your home.

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: What are my rights if I have been paying rent for over 9 years but have no lease
Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley answered on Jun 14, 2021

You are a tenant-at-will, and have no more than a month-to-month tenancy. The landlords may terminate the lease upon 30 days notice at any time.

2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: My Mom had a jointly owned house when she passed away. Can anything be done to prevent the sale
Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley answered on Jun 10, 2021

What sale? By whom? By the surviving joint owner? By the personal representative of the estate? Was ownership titled as tenants in common, tenants by the entirety, or joint tenants with right of survivorship? How the deed is titled determines whether your mother's estate has any interest... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Probate for Maryland on
Q: My mother died intestate in 2002. She left a home in KC, Missouri in poor condition that has been demolished by the city

I paid the mortgage and taxes on the property the last few years before her death. I paid off the mortgage months after her death and have continued to pay the annual property taxes on the now vacant land. I would like to put the property in my name so that I can sell it. I have 2 siblings that I... Read more »

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley answered on Jun 3, 2021

You need to open an estate for your mother, in the jurisdiction she resided in at the time of her death. If that was in the same jurisdiction as the now vacant land, do it there. Once you are appointed executor or personal representative of the estate, you can then sell the property without... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Land Use & Zoning for Maryland on
Q: Can Adverse Possession Be Granted By The Clam Of Right And And The Adverse Clam Statement.

Can Adverse Possession Be Granted By The Clam Of Right And And The Adverse Clam Statement. ( Non Non Eminent Non Non Preeminent ) ( Non Eminent Non Preeminent )

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg answered on Jun 2, 2021

Your word salad needs a light vinaigrette, because it’s got no relationship to law. Adverse possession has five elements. You haven’t named any of them. There are no clams involved unless you are serving clam chowder or a po’ boy, and I’m guessing it’ll be the latter.

1 Answer | Asked in Land Use & Zoning, Real Estate Law and Small Claims for Maryland on
Q: Can my neighbor keep her gate open if it is blocking my driveway. What are my options for relief?

My neighbors fence is partially blocking access to our driveway. We've closed it since it is accessible from our own property, but she continues to open it. What are our options, and what maryland provisions cover this?

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley answered on May 27, 2021

I suppose it's a form of trespass. Have you tried talking to your neighbor? If that fails, provide her with written notice not to open her gate across your driveway, which blocks your access in and out of your property. If she does it again, I suppose you can file trespass charges (I doubt... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: Is a seller required to inform a buyer of pest infestation?
Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley answered on May 23, 2021

You are listed as asking this question in New York, so this answer will not apply to a NY property. However, you posted this question in the Maryland forum suction, so if you are selling a property located in the state of Maryland, the answer depends on whether you are selling the property... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: Can I use a quit claim deed for heirs to convey their interest then later use a warranty deed to sell the property?

About 8 of us are heirs to a small piece of property in Vance County North Carolina with a value of approximately $7,000. Can the heirs convey their interest to a single heir using the quit claim process and then the single heir sell the property to a non-heir/unrelated person using a warranty deed?

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on May 13, 2021

Any of that could happen, but you need to consider what needs to be done. A derivation of title clause for the heirs' source of title must be drafted and placed in the legal description. An affidavit may need to be recorded first. Quit Claim Deeds convey the estates, but Warranty Deeds also... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Criminal Law and Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: What do we do about the person renting from our landlord who was subletting to us... stealing our money?

Mike is our landlord. Jeff rents the house from him and his name is on the lease. Jeff is subletting to me, and two other roommates. Jeff moved out but is still on the lease. We have been sending him rent money and utility money to pay the landlord and utilities (in his name). We found out today he... Read more »

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg answered on May 13, 2021

It sounds to me like you need to get out in front of this with the landlord as well as the sub landlord. It might be a good idea to review the lease between Mike and Jeff to see if he had the right to sublet. It is likely that you may be evicted, and if the PEPCO bill is in your name, you might... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Maryland on
Q: I am concerned about a condo board and the seating of its officers. Should a unit have more than one person on the board

we are a 9 unit association. We have an equal vote among us. The officers are elected by the entire group. The officers have certain leeway on fiscal decisions. Should a single unit have more than One representative seated as an officer?

Can those officers be solely appointed by the... Read more »

Richard Sternberg
Richard Sternberg answered on May 3, 2021

I assume you have either studied the Condo bylaws and Declarations and read through all the minutes for violations, or you have at least retained counsel to do that for you. So, what are the relevant sections? What do they say? Do those sections violate Maryland Code? What procedures are required... Read more »

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