I have had annual lease renewed for over several years. This year I was sent a lease agreement that I signed. The agreement had two copies. I sent back both copies. I did not receive/do not have the signed lease back from the landlord. I thought nothing of it as checks have been cashed. I have learned now that they plan on selling building.

Do I have a lease, or am I month-to-month now? Worried that landlord is playing shenanigans with agreements. I ask because I will find new rental now if it is month-to-month before building sold.

New York, not NYC.

  • 1
    What's the jurisdiction - country, state etc?
    – user35069
    Commented Apr 21, 2022 at 18:44

1 Answer 1


Generally speaking, you signature and delivery of the lease to the landlord makes it possible for the landlord to enforce.

Particularly when, as in the question, the landlord presented the lease to you as an "offer" which you accepted without modification, it is probably binding upon the landlord even if the landlord does not sign it or return a copy with the landlord's signature. In jurisdictions that have a statute of frauds, your part performance by sending checks in the lease period consistent with the lease, and the landlord's part performance by continuing to allow you to occupy the premises without objection, would probably make the statute of frauds (which generally requires a signed writing by the party against whom a lease is enforced) to be inapplicable.

On the other hand, if you materially changed a version provided by the landlord, there is a real question over whether there has been an offer and acceptance, or a meeting of the minds, agreeing to the new lease. Materially here meaning changes that are more than updating your contact details and go to the heart of the lease contract.

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