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Pa. Landlord Tenant Act of 1951 - Essay Example

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Summary
The foundation of the landlord and tenant relationship gives rise to a number of issues that are common to all types of tenancies and are applicable in all tenancy scenarios, whether they are residential, commercial or agricultural. For tenants, the tenancy is important not simply because it is a property asset but because of the particular and special significance of that asset, whether it be a home or a commercial base…
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Pa. Landlord Tenant Act of 1951
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Download file to see previous pages Nor is a lease simply a right to occupy premises in many situations, the tenant is entitled, by contract or statute, to receive a package of services from the landlord, such as the right to have the property well maintained and heated.
For landlords, although the lease generally serves to be a source of wealth, there may be other considerations that influence the landlord's behavior such as good management practices, whether for welfares or commercial motives, some landlords may be more ruthless in their treatment of tenants, seeking to maximize profit and minimize management costs. In some situations the law has, therefore, had to intervene to promote minimum standards of behavior and to protect tenants from exploitation and eviction.
Long leases have been used for selling both houses and flats. Historically, long leasehold sales were used for housing developments, originally under the building lease system and more recently by landlords with a long-term perspective on investment. Since the 1950s it has been increasingly common for flats to be purpose-built for sale on long leases and for existing buildings to be converted into flats. (Bright, 1995) Blocks built for rental in earlier times have been broken up for long leasehold sales and many of these buildings now contain flats of mixed tenure, some rental and some long leasehold.
Typically, leases are granted for terms of 99 years, sometimes 999 years and sold at a substantial premium, with a low ground rent being reserved. The major reason why these flats are sold on a leasehold, rather than freehold, basis is due to the problems of enforcing freehold covenants.
Sometimes leases have clauses and terms in them that cannot be enforced. For example, you cannot legally sign away your right to a decent place to live. The tenant cannot be made responsible for all repairs or repairs that cost under a certain amount of money. According to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court in Pugh v. Holmes, the landlord must maintain everything for which the tenant is paying rent. Similarly, the tenant cannot be made to take a house or an apartment as is.Regardless of any agreement you make with the landlord, it is the landlord's responsibility to keep the property up to Housing Code Standards. (lease, 2006a)
Fixed Term lease
This is a lease for a fixed period of time 'for five months', or 'for 99 years'. It does not matter that the lease might be brought to an end before the expiry of the fixed term; for example, where the landlord has the right to forfeit the lease if the tenant fails to pay rent, or if the tenant has the benefit of a 'break clause' by which he is given the right in a 25year lease to break it at the end of five years. Nor does the fixed term have to be a single continuous period. As there is no need for the lease to be 'in possession', it is possible to have 'reversionary leases' that take effect at a future date. By the Law of Property Act 1925, s 149 (3) however, it must take effect within 21 years otherwise it is void. The fixed term will automatically end when the term finishes and there is no need to serve any notice to end the lease.
Periodic Tenancies
A periodic tenancy is one, which is for a period, and ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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