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Pennsylvania Landlord - Tenant Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: My husband and I are both on the lease but only his name is on the eviction. Can I fight it?
Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing
answered on May 25, 2021

You should be able to, I would check with legal aid in your county to see if they can give you some advice specific to your facts. However if served with papers you need to file an answer to avoid a default judgment.

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: can a new owner of my auctioned off rental apartment of 36 yrs. kick me out without notice?
Nellie T Schulz
Nellie T Schulz
answered on May 9, 2021

When real property which is subject to an existing lease or leases is sold, the leases remain as part of the real property for the entire remaining term of each lease. If the term of a particular lease is month-to-month, then the new owner may terminate the month-to-month lease with at least 30... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: If my lease expires, am I free and clear to move out? Plumbing issues, mold, mushrooms grow in kitchen baseboards. Uggh

We are in a basement apartment. Sent numerous messages and photos about the plumbing backing up. We shower in our neighbors food waste. If they do laundry, our shower backs up and overflows (great when we’re not home). Got a dehumidifier to deal w mold (it’s bad) and even sent photos of moldy... Read more »

Nellie T Schulz
Nellie T Schulz
answered on Mar 15, 2021

The general rule is: A lease ends when the term of the lease ends.

BUT, you must read your lease carefully, as there may be exceptions to this rule. For instance, the lease may say that the term of the lease automatically renews unless the tenant sends written notice to the landlord of...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: Hello my name is zakiya and my question is if me and my landlord file for rent program and he said I don’t have to pay

Can he change his mind now because he don’t want to wait to get the money from the program

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing
answered on Feb 24, 2021

If that was the deal going in, and you relied on that in taking the place, you have an argument to make that you can leave without having to pay.

However, if you started to rent, then he said you don't have to pay, that's more a change in conditions that affected his view of what...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant, Contracts and Personal Injury for Pennsylvania on
Q: I just rented an apartment 5 days ago. I was locked onside because door would not open. 6 hours later they got it open

I’m scared to death to stay there thinking had there been a fire, my 5 year old son and I might be dead or seriously burned! They drilled through the door...my son was screaming...

I don’t want to stay here. How can I get out of my lease and move to a safer space? What recourses to I... Read more »

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing
answered on Feb 23, 2021

Look at your lease, but the fact there was one incident is usually not sufficient to say the premises are uninhabitable. If you spoke to the locksmith and they said that there was no way they could fix it that's a little different, but locks are not the type of thing that a Court will break a... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: Can a landlord reclaim the property when you have a month to month lease that has expired without evicting you?

Receiving certified letter to vacate premises and that landlord is reclaiming his property, not renewing month to month lease but is claiming he is NOT evicting us.

Nellie T Schulz
Nellie T Schulz
answered on Jan 28, 2021

The law in Pennsylvania is that on the date that the term of a lease expires, the lease itself expires and terminates. If a lease terminates, it terminates and no longer exists. This means the tenant no longer has any right to remain at the leased premises and the tenant must vacate the leased... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: Changing automatic lease renewal period by amendment? No signature

My current lease ends at the end of Nov 2020. I received a certified letter back around August stating that my lease would automatically renew for another year unless I provided notice by September 1st.

Suffice to say, the letter was lost and this did not happen. I want to renew, but at a... Read more »

Nellie T Schulz
Nellie T Schulz
answered on Nov 16, 2020

As to your first question, if a yearly lease automatically renews, it renews for the same period of time as the original lease. That's the law even if the lease doesn't say what the length of the renewal term is. In your situation, the lease said the renewal term would be for one year. As... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: My Pennsylvania landlord advised me they are evicting me under "Pennsylvania Hotelkeepers Law".

My Pennsylvania landlord advised me they are evicting me under "Pennsylvania Hotelkeepers Law" without any other reason given other then they need my room. Is this allowed under specific Pennsylvania precedent? Assuming the plain language in the statute applies about removing guests,... Read more »

Nellie T Schulz
Nellie T Schulz
answered on Nov 9, 2020

I may be throughly thick, but would you ask your question again and include more information. Look at the lease and sign on the house: did you lease a room, a hotel room, an air bnb, a vacation room? Townships require rental licenses to lease houses and rooms, but the state requires real estate... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: Daughter is paying rent during covid-19, landlord won't renew lease, she has autoimmune disorder,

Only reason won't renewal lease cause she asked for repairs, which was hazardous, & apartments not in demand due to covid. She has autoimmune disorder, he didn't even give In writing, through text. Has nowhere to go. What can she do, as there was extension for eviction & non... Read more »

Nellie T Schulz
Nellie T Schulz
answered on Sep 9, 2020

The Governor’s Executive Order prohibiting eviction as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic expired on August 31, 2020. The Governor has said he does not have the legal authority to extend the prohibition, but the Pennsylvania Legislature is currently considering extending it. Assuming this... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: I pay my landlord to do the yardwork. Should he be trimming the flower bed that is partially blocking the stairs?
Nellie T Schulz
Nellie T Schulz
answered on Jun 27, 2020

I assume you have contacted your landlord in writing or email asking him to trim the flower bed and he refused.

Whether the agreement with your landlord requires him to trim the flower bed depends on what the agreement states (if in writing) or what the terms you and he discussed and...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: My landlord was advised they can not kick us out so they have flooded the apartment with raw sewage to force us out

The landlord has backed up 3inches of raw sewage into the apartment making it uninhabitable because they were told they can not evict us and need a court order what can we do?

Nellie T Schulz
Nellie T Schulz
answered on May 5, 2020

First, you should move out to protect your health. But immediately contact your local housing and health officials to (politely) demand an inspection of the property, because the sewage is an immediate danger to public health, and issue a report. Their report most likely will declare the property... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: Can my landlord hold my security deposit indefinitely until the "covid19 pandemic" is over?

My landlord informed my roommate and I that they will not return our security deposit until the pandemic has cleared. It has already been over 1.5 months since the last day of the lease.

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing
answered on Apr 23, 2020

No, the pandemic has nothing to do with their duty to return the deposit.

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: How to evict a family member who is doing/selling drugs during this coronavirus situation.

He receives mail at my elderly parents house. My parents are scared. The police can not do anything. He is violent and aggressive.

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing
answered on Apr 17, 2020

Your parents can declare him a trespasser and ask him to leave. What you need perhaps is to speak with the elder care advocate in your county. The police can do something if the parents want but they are the landowners

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: My landlord went up $200.while it a covid virus Is it legal

I been at this house for 17yrs.renting I been doing the up keep of everything. He notify March 15.he was selling the house my rent go up until may.then I get call march27

I had pay $750

Starting in april.im not working because of this virus.then when they called they want to see a... Read more »

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing
answered on Apr 17, 2020

Contact your local Legal aid or Legal Services. If you have a lease, that will say how and when they can increase the rent. If there isn't a lease, you are a monthly tenant. He would normally have to give you a months notice before the rent goes up.

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: 2 days to make a decision my mom passed away just 3 days ago And being told I have to be out by the 30th of April!

I was my parents Dural power of attorney since July of 2019, they renewed the year lease on October 1st of 2019 sadly he passed away just 19 days later my mom is an amputee can’t care for herself or be left alone she had Ben in out of hospital the office was closed due to covid as we are asked to... Read more »

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall
answered on Apr 16, 2020

There's great information here for you: http://www.phillytenant.org/. Check it regularly.

Best of luck to you.

3 Answers | Asked in Foreclosure, Real Estate Law and Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: Question below

My sons grandfather passed in 2015 and left his home to my son in his will. We've been living here since before he passed with him and continued to live here after. Two guys came walking into my house through the front door last week with the keys to the lock claiming they bought it in a... Read more »

Mark Scoblionko
Mark Scoblionko
answered on Apr 14, 2020

I agree that you need a “professional opinion,” which means that you should engage a lawyer to look into the situation and give you advice.

From your brief description, it sounds like there may have been a mortgage against the property, unpaid taxes or a judgment that was not paid, any...
Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Contracts and Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: I stay in an apartment in Pittsburgh, PA. The property owners are not providing certain services. Can I withhold rent?

These services are clearly mentioned in the lease. I want to withhold 200$ from my rent.

Elizabeth Tarasi
Elizabeth Tarasi
answered on Apr 6, 2020

If it is in the lease, send your landlord and reference the language in the lease. Advise them that if they do not provide the service you will hire someone to perform the service and deduct the cost from the rent you pay.

2 Answers | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: Hi I'm John and will soon be attending Johnson and Whales. I was wondering if it's legal to live in a self storage area.
Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing
answered on Mar 30, 2020

Probably violates an ordinance and the storage area won't like it. Maybe look for some deal where you clean in exchange for a break on the rent.

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1 Answer | Asked in Civil Rights, Landlord - Tenant and Municipal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: Is it illegal for me to take my break outside of my building under the awning?

New tenant in the building is telling people who work in my office they are not allowed to stand in front of their office on the first floor. We have an awning on the building that protects from rain. I am not impeding the flow of traffic or talking to anyone. I work in the same building on a... Read more »

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing
answered on Feb 12, 2020

Depends on how the lease defines that space. If it's part of the public entrance, anyone can stand there. Your employer may want to suggest to the landlord some alternative or approach the business owner on the first floor.

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: my lease says the landlord can do a non-renewal of lease 60 days before. Some lawyer sent me the non-renewal of lease

is that allowed? and if that is the case shouldnt the letter say the lawyer is representing the landlord?

Nellie T Schulz
Nellie T Schulz
answered on Feb 4, 2020

Technically, you may have an argument. There does exist a case concerning a long-term commercial lease with a similar provision which held that a letter declaring a non-monetary default sent by an unknown lawyer was not effective because the unknown person didn’t identify himself as... Read more »

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