What if the closing on the purchase of your home is delayed and you are now faced with staying at your current rental apartment one month beyond the expiration date of your lease? In this circumstance, you should not sign a renewal lease for a one year period. If you do, you would be liable for the balance of the 11 months if you vacate after the first month. If you are a rent-stabilized tenant, and you failed to sign a renewal lease, the landlord might commence proceedings to evict you from the apartment based upon expiration of the last lease. But as a practical matter, by the time the proceeding is brought , you will likely be out of the apartment. Even if you are not out, most Judges will allow tenants to stay if the tenant can show that they are purchasing a property. Thus, by producing a copy of the sales contract or letter from your attorney indicating an impending closing, you will most likely be allowed additional time.
For those tenants who are not rent-stabilized, if the landlord presents you with a renewal lease, explain that you will be leaving soon based on the purchase of a property. As stated above, it is not recommended that you sign a renewal lease.