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When rent is due

Posted by DK on September 03, 1999 at 12:14:01:

In Reply to: Re: Half rent now half on 15th?? posted by Brook on September 03, 1999 at 00:04:00:

If you have no written lease, unless the landlord can prove that you agreed otherwise, rent is due on the last day of the term. So if you are a month to month tenant, rent is due on the last day of the month.

This comes from the old common law practice, which dates back to feudal times, that rent is always due on the last day of the term. So if you leased a field for a term of one year, rent was due on the last day of the one-year term. This made sense in an agricultural economy because rent was usually paid out of the crops grown on the land (the "usufruct").

Another one of those old common law rules which still applies in New York law, is that the place rent is payable is at the subject premises. So, unless there is an agreement otherwise, the landlord must personally go to the premises on the last day of the term to collect the rent. Real Property Actions and Proceedings Law 711(2) modifies this rule slightly by allowing the landlord to bring a summary eviction proceeding for non-payment of the rent by making a written demand served in the same manner as commencing a lawsuit.

Every form lease in use for more than a century alters these common law rules by contractually agreeing that rent is paid in advance on the first day of the month at the place designated by the landlord. (Go ahead, read the fine print--you'll find it in every lease.)

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