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Conditions for extending the lease for an apartment

A number of questions accompany the conclusion of a lease agreement for an apartment: What to remember when negotiating it? Is it necessary to think about extending the lease from the beginning? And when does the lease automatically renew?

5 minutes of reading

From law practice: The new Civil Code allows automatic extension of the lease contract for an apartment in certain circumstances

Mr Rostislav rented a family house and always concluded a contract with the tenant for only one year. However, he now needs the house for his son, so he did not want to extend the last term and let the contract “expire”. Being of a mild nature, he understandably let the tenant continue to live in the house after the official end of the lease period – “until he finds something else”. The tenant promised to leave within a month, then within two, but still had no intention of leaving. Once the three months were up, he told Mr. Rostis that the lease was legally extended and that he was out of luck because he was staying in the house.

Mr Rostislav was “tearing his hair out”. He had not counted on such a thing. He turned to us for advice on how to deal with such a situation. The new Civil Code has been in force since 2014. It is true that it allows for the renewal of the lease of an apartment, which the previous Civil Code excluded.

Thus, it is indeed the case that if the tenant continues to use the apartment or house for at least three months after the date on which the lease was due to end and the landlord does not ask him to leave the apartment within that time, the lease is renegotiated for the same period as previously agreed; but for a maximum of two years.

Mr Rostislav did say that he had invited the tenant to leave the flat and we had no reason to disbelieve him. Unfortunately for him, however, his invitations were only ever made verbally or by telephone. He had no record of them, no delivery note and not even an e-mail. According to the law, the summons must be in writing (ideally by letter with delivery).

Even so, nothing was lost. We advised Mr Rostislav how to get rid of the evicted tenant anyway. If the landlord needs the house for his family, he can terminate the lease with three months’ notice. The result was not quite ideal, but at least it was satisfactory.

However, automatic renewal can be explicitly excluded in the contract. This is therefore the best way to go if you want to avoid such a situation. It means that when the contract expires, it will not be automatically renewed and you will no longer have to worry about the tenant unwittingly extending their stay. An available solicitor always recommends that you exclude pronlogation or its exclusion in the tenancy agreement so that you don’t have to stress about something going wrong at the end of the tenancy.

Do you want to avoid unnecessary mistakes when entering into a lease agreement for an apartment? We will be happy to prepare a tailor-made contract for you.

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We provide a complete package of services for both landlords and tenants. We will draft or review all lease/rental contracts, help with extension or termination of lease, and make sure everything takes place smoothly and without legal complications. You’re also welcome to pay after services are provided.

Tip: Looking for an apartment for rent? Do you own a rental house? How to rent an apartment in private ownership? Whether you are a tenant or a landlord looking to rent out your property, find out what all the details of a tenancy agreement should be. This will prevent potential disputes and misunderstandings that often end up in court. We will also touch on the topics of renting non-residential premises, cottages, land or garages and vehicles.

Does the landlord have to find compensation for the tenant if the lease is not renewed?

The law has not guaranteed a tenant’s housing “at any price” for several years. It is no longer paternalistic and does not include the possibility to grant housing compensation at the end of the tenancy at all – you will not find it anywhere in the new legislation.

The section in which housing compensation was defined by law has also been deleted, of course. This means that the law no longer even defines what constitutes a replacement flat and replacement accommodation. Enforcement of an order to vacate a dwelling is now done by eviction not to shelter, but the persons are simply reported and the items removed.

Thus, it will no longer be a matter of what type or form of housing compensation is due to the person in any given case, nor will it be a matter of whether there is any reason to change the housing compensation awarded at a later date. If the landlord does not grant the extension of the lease, he does not even have to deal with where the tenant will continue to live.

Are you wondering what pitfalls may be involved in entering into a tenancy agreement? You can read about it in this article. Difficulties can also arise when ending a tenancy. You can find out what this can look like in practice here.

Tip: Are you a tenant and need to end your lease? If you can’t reach an agreement with your landlord, you can terminate your lease. Do you have the option to terminate directly in your contract? What will be the length of the notice period? Do you need to give reasons for the notice? Or do you not know what to do as a landlord if the tenant does not pay and does not want to move out? What about an agreement to terminate the lease of non-residential premises? We will answer these and other questions in our separate article so that you can avoid the disputes that often accompany the termination of a lease.

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We provide a complete package of services for both landlords and tenants. We will draft or review all lease/rental contracts, help with extension or termination of lease, and make sure everything takes place smoothly and without legal complications. You’re also welcome to pay after services are provided.

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Author of the article

JUDr. Ondřej Preuss, Ph.D.

Ondřej is the attorney who came up with the idea of providing legal services online. He's been earning his living through legal services for more than 10 years. He especially likes to help clients who may have given up hope in solving their legal issues at work, for example with real estate transfers or copyright licenses.

Education
  • Law, Ph.D, Pf UK in Prague
  • Law, L’université Nancy-II, Nancy
  • Law, Master’s degree (Mgr.), Pf UK in Prague
  • International Territorial Studies (Bc.), FSV UK in Prague

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